Tuesday, July 31, 2012

[Guest Post] Calee: Survive a Nasty Breakup Like a Boss

I would just like to state for the record that, no, the BF ("beef") and I did NOT break up nor is that anywhere on the horizon - I mean, not to be all sappy and cheesy, but I'm probably the happiest I've been since I can remember. Even if His Royal Abs-iness Ryan Reynolds were to inexplicably show up on my doorstep, I'd probably take a pass. I'm THAT smitten.

But let's face it, we've all gone through breakups and they've all sucked and they could have all possibly gone a bit better than they did. If we're lucky, we learned from our mistakes. If we're not lucky, we maybe repeat a few. 

Today, my dear friend Calee (@chimes) shares some hard-won wisdom and some rock solid advice on how to get through one of the most sucktastic experiences of being a human being.


Survive a Nasty Breakup Like a Boss

I’m Kelly’s friend Calee, blogging genius and fitness guru behind life + running. We met in college. Design school in fact. She’s been there for me through some rough times, not the least of which was my shit breakup nearly 3 years ago.

No matter if you’re the dumpee, the dumper, or part of a so-called “mutual breakup” — breakups suck. Some are more nasty than others, but if you can muster the courage to crawl out from beneath the safety of your covers to read this, then you have the power to put your life back together and come out of your shitty breakup a stronger, more desirable you.

Ready to quit thinking about your ex and start living again? Let’s do this, champ.

1.      Cut off ALL lines of communication. The less you think about your ex, the faster you will feel better. It takes 60+ days to kick a habit, so try cutting off communication for 10 days, then 20, and get a countdown to 60 going. Treat yourself for each milestone reached. Each day will be a little easier.

Temporarily delete your ex from social media outlets, delete his or her phone number (from your memory too), set your e-mail so anything from your ex goes directly to the trash, and avoid all places you might “accidentally” run into your ex.

Not gonna lie. This is the HARDEST step. I refused to delete his number, and soon I was calling him at 5 AM daily. I blocked him from social media one outlet at a time until eventually all I could do was sit and cry while stalking his Last.fm playlist and only wonder what existential meaning, “Dead Skin Mask” by Slayer had. Oh my god we saw Slayer together once. HE STILL LOVES ME.  

2.      Put everything that reminds you of your ex in a box and get rid of it. You’re gonna need a big box — anything is sacred at this delicate time. Give the box to a friend for safekeeping. You might want it back later, but hopefully you’ll both have a laugh while traipsing through your treasure chest in six months. Your friend’s job is to keep you from looking at it until you are completely over it. For realsies.

Kelly kept my box for over a year. I saved his toothbrush. A freaking toothbrush. Used.

3.      Enlist a breakup buddy. Or two. I needed two. I was a bigger wreck than one person could handle. A breakup buddy is a friend who can agree to help you by listening to all your woes (within reason — don’t call your buddy at 3 AM), making sure you aren’t trying to contact your ex, and basically being there so you don’t fall flat on your face.

Kelly was one of my breakup buddies. My other buddy was a fail. I’ve been dating him for the past 3 years. Try not to do that. Unless your breakup buddy is really, really hot.

4.      Write it out. It sounds lame, but every time you want to shoot off an e-mail, or tweet to or about your ex, put it in an e-mail and send it to your breakup buddy. Make a list of all the reasons your relationship was awesome and all the reasons it sucked. Keep going until the reasons it sucked far outweigh the good things. When you’re done, burn it. That doesn’t really help anything, but it’s fun to burn things.

I started a password-protected blogspot.com blog that I can write to by sending an e-mail to a secret e-mail address, and I gave my closest friends the password. I still use this outlet, and it’s such a stress reliever. Even now once a month I fire off 10-12 posts of PMS-fueled rambles. Entertainment at its best.

5.      Whatever you do, don’t do stupid shit. What do I mean by stupid shit? I mean doing things that make you temporarily feel good, but then when you wake up the next day in a puddle of shame (and sometimes bodily fluids), you feel even worse than you did the day before.

I decided early on to avoid drinking, drugs, random sex, making the ex jealous, fantasizing about getting back together, and other activities related to a stereotypical breakup. Though fun, I guarantee none of these things will help you get over this, unless you drink enough to erase your memory, but that will likely land you a large hospital bill.

6.      Speaking of hospitals — get professional help if needed. Your friends and family won’t want to hear one more word about your stupid freaking ex after a month or two of this. After 30 days, they will need a rest (and rightfully so). Seek out counseling in to help you through this hard time.

The best advice I ever got was from my breakup buddies: Get professional help. Your friends and family love you but they can only help you so much. I bounced back so much faster with the aid of a trained professional.

7.      Stage a comeback. Take sexy photos. Throw a party. Do something completely badass and awesome you never could have done before your shitty breakup. Go out and own it.

In addition my list, I strongly recommend buying or downloading It's Called a Breakup Because It's BrokenIt may sound silly, but it was the best purchase I made at that time (the second best required batteries). In fact, I think most of these things were ideas I got from that book, which I came to call my breakup bible.