Warning, this is done with a sense of NSFW whimsy and humor. The idea is to make you laugh about a really crappy, painful situation AND help you prepare for what will happen if you decide to breakup with someone. Don’t freak out. Click here to look at puppies and kittens instead.
Okay, on to what we’re talking about today. People experience heartbreak in vastly different ways. They also work through breakup pain very differently. It’s really a tossup how your freshly minted ex will act when you break the bad news. So here are the 7 most common breakup reactions and how to get through it.
1. Emotionally Devastated.
These are the guys who you have delayed breaking up with for months because you KNOW that you’re both going to be emotionally devastated out but you know deep down that it’s time to rip that bandaid off.
Because they are heartbroken, you are heartbroken. This is by far the most heart-wrenching type of breakup. Get the snot rags, the tears are coming. This is usually the result of great love for one another but total inability to be happy together. It’s sad and the worst. Most likely sufferers are young lovers and divorcees. Almost everyone can cycle through it however.
The angry breakup reaction usually comes from some type of betrayal, or they believed that you both had more of a future than you really did. Sometimes the angry breakup reaction comes from how you word your breakup spiel, so be mindful of that. If you haven’t broken the bad news yet, take a look at this.
Ready yourself for table pounding and livid accusations. Anger is often the appetizer in a breakup main course filled with deep hurt. Anger can segway into emotional devastation territory lightning fast.
When your freshly minted ex doesn’t care that you are leaving him, it can lead to all sorts of ill-fated self questioning. I had one of these exes once and couldn’t figure out if he had in fact broken up with me, I had done the breaking or it was mutual. It was a head scratcher for months. I arrogantly thought he would care. I thought he would fight. It insulted my sense of vanity when he didn’t do anything or seem upset in any way. He just left. Months later I finally broke down and called him because I just couldn’t handle not knowing what had actually happened.
If you’re really set on hitting the road and homeboy acts like it’s no big deal, it can make you question the whole thing. Which makes you want to revisit it. You’ll find yourself asking questions like:
“Does he really love me?”
“Did he EVER LOVE ME?”
“WHY DOESN’T HE CARE????”
Acting like you don’t care during a breakup is a powerful weapon. If you can do it successfully and avoid any hint of anger, they’re going to circle back around to see what’s up. Curiosity is human nature and we’ve all heard that “the opposite of love is indifference.”
Note: as the person being broken up with, ambivalence and distance is the easiest way to get your ex back in the long run, should you want them.
Usually relief follows a long hard period of fighting. Both of you are so exhausted from screaming at each other that it’s just great that it’s a welcome reprieve when it’s finally over.
Another reason for relief is that you both knew you were wrong for each other but are still haplessly dating anyway and both of you want out.
This is the kind of breakup where you both want to go out with your friends afterward to celebrate. Do it. It’s cathartic. Just don’t drunk dial the ex at 2am. This will lead to painful setbacks.
The amicable breakup is ideal. Both people know it doesn’t work and are sad but know that it’s time to move on. Amicable breakups are the kind most likely to lead to getting your whole DVD collection back in one piece and mutual bank accounts closed without anyone trying to take everything.
Amicable breakups are rare! They are wonderful if there are children involved and are what everyone should strive for, even if their ex is not cooperating. It’s easy to say, harder to do. The more fairly that you complete the breakup, and the more certain you are that you want the other person to thrive separate from you, the more likely to achieve this delicate balance.
Denial is hard to cope with because just as you’re breaking the bad news, they are trying to talk you out of it. It was hard enough to muster up the breakup speech, but now you’ve got to pull out charts and diagrams to explain why it doesn’t work.
Meeting a breakup speech with denial is tough because the other person will often try and convince you that you should be friends. If the relationship was built on a friendship from the start, it can be tempting to agree. The problem with being friends with an ex is that it’s like trying to nail jello to a wall. Impossible AND frustrating. However, if you agree to an ill-fated friendship in the moment, you can be encouraged to follow through. This will lead to more awkwardness. Strive for a clean break.
7. Revenge Seeking Motherfuckers.
These scary men are from the “oh? you don’t want me!?! I HATE YOU” tribe. They are scary to behold in the midst of a breakup. They are also unpredictable and often involve restraining orders. If you think you might have one of these, I suggest going to great lengths to protect your personal safety.