menu/ RECOVERING FROM A BREAKUP

By Andre Cross

"Baby, stay with me tonight, please!"

"I'm sorry, I don't love you anymore."

Sound familiar? So what next?

You're sweating, shaking, and feeling as if the world will soon come to an end. Everything you believed in - love, respect, loyalty - has all vanished at lightning speed. You told yourself that if you treated her right, she'd be with you forever.

Wrong! Nothing lasts forever. This is a lesson we all learn the hard way. She'll hurt you, and you'll probably hurt someone else. It's a vicious cycle that one must learn about, in order to survive the crazy game of "love".

Let's face it, we have all been through the dreaded breakup. If you haven't, believe me, you soon will. So here is an eight-stage timeline you may experience that can help you recuperate after a breakup.

eight-stage timeline

STAGE 1 - Time heals everything: It's normal to have low self-esteem when someone you love leaves you. But remember, you're still the same person that she once fell in love with. The only difference is that you are no longer together. Believe me, you'll find someone else in time. As for your broken heart, the old saying time heals everything cannot be more true.

STAGE 2 - You are vulnerable: Anyone can take advantage of you when you are feeling vulnerable. You must therefore be extra careful not to look to quick fixes, such as dating old flings.

STAGE 3 - Feelings of denial: At this stage, you will probably call your ex many times to question whether the relationship is truly over, or whether there is still a chance that your relationship can be salvaged.

STAGE 4 - Feelings of bitterness: Remember, the relationship is over, so don't express feelings of sadness and bitterness to your ex. If you do, you'll be letting her know that you are unable to handle her decision, which makes you look immature. Instead, channel those feelings into positive energy by improving the skills at the activities you love.

STAGE 5 - Take time off: A lot of men try to rebuild their new broken fragile ego, by dating again too soon after a breakup. Stop! You'll only end up damaging yourself even more, as well as the person you are dating. If you date someone just to fill a gap, that's the way you'll end up treating that person. Stay away from women who'll prey on your fragile emotional state, and take advantage of your vulnerability. This will only give you a false sense of trust. Take time off and get involved in things you never had the time to do before.

STAGE 6 - Socialize: Meet a lot of new people. Use this time to improve relations with old friends, network, and make new friends. A well-balanced life will lessen the impact of a breakup, because you will still have the other aspects of your life intact, and improved.

STAGE 7 - Fall in love: Eventually, as time passes, you will fall in love again. Make sure to let yourself fall in love, and take the time to really let your partner in your life. There is nothing better than a new flame to make you forget an old one (once you have had the time to heal, of course).

STAGE 8 - Don't set yourself up: Don't get carried away with this new found flame, remember nothing lasts forever. Don't make this person the sole focus of your life, because if it doesn't workout, you'll find yourself right back at Stage 1.

2003 AskMen.com

Gabriel smiled without feeling at this performance and returned his attention to the road. The ocean, he mused through an exhalation. And then, with a tenderness that was abstracted but still touching, he said: in water there are no mistakes, only directions. Do you understand? To our right, the sea - the moonlight carves a canyon through its heart. Truly, look: a canyon of reflected opalescence. I never lie. Why? Because there is no point. Lies complicate existence. Despite this, no-one has ever wanted me for my own truth. My whole life has been one long unwitting lie and it is seen to be desirable.

I am, to put it bluntly, an example to my fellow men. There are myths in which we are all taught to believe, and imperviousness is one of them. There are myths to which we all subscribe - money, success, power over peers. If a man is dead within those myths, nobody cares. Mythology is no place for a human being. And yet we are conditioned to desire that which cannot be attained. And why?

Because it creates an environment of struggle and when struggling, man is too busy to grieve for that which he has lost.

- from The Pure Weight of the Heart, by Antonella Gambotto-Burke

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