I don’t see how breaking things off with someone you care about could ever not hurt. Logically, the questioner is right: it shouldn’t hurt. You are ending something that obviously wasn’t working and giving yourself a chance at happiness. It’s time to rejoice! For me, however, it’s never that simple. Breaking up has always hurt for the following reasons:
*You lose a friend and partner; someone who knows and understands you like nobody else. Breaking up means that a person you love and care about, usually deeply, won’t be in your life in the same way again. You don’t have access to his/her thoughts/opinions/experiences like you used to. It doesn’t matter why you broke up, it’ll always suck to not have him/her there when something happens that only he/she would understand or care about.
*Not knowing when the next time you’ll love again. It also hurts because usually at the moment it feels like you might never find someone who will make you happy like that person did (at least at some point). Even if the reason you broke up was because they weren’t making you happy. Until you fall in love again, you will wonder if you lost the one person who will make you happiest in life.
*No one else compares. At least for a while. It’s always taken me a very long time to get over a break up with someone I love. It never gets easier, it always hurts. Some people deal with it by jumping right back into dating which works perfectly for me.
*Feeling of loss mixed with anger. If you’re ending on bad terms, you might feel like the other person wronged you; yet you still miss him/her. Experiencing conflicting feelings is confusing and frustrating. It could also hurt because you think they never loved you. That can be pretty devastating.
*It sucks being alone. Good or bad, your boyfriend or girlfriend was once the person you shared a big part of your life with. You thought in terms of “us’ and “we,” the future was not just yours but “ours.” When you break up, suddenly it’s just “me.” It can be tough re-learning to experience things on your own.
I’m sure there are plenty more. These are just a few that come to mind right now. All this said: while breaking up hurts, it can also be a great opportunity for self evaluation and growth. Think about what worked, what didn’t, and how next time it could be better. There will be other relationships; focus on things you can do to make the next one last.
Good luck and chin up, my friend. None of us knows what the future holds and maybe there’s something to the saying “what is meant to be will always find its way.” Thinking about it this way has given me at least momentary relief even at the height of my pain.
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