The pain you suffer following the breakdown of a relationship is like the pain of bereavement. Losing the person you love, whether the reason is death or through the failure of a relationship, is agonisingly painful. The emotional stages of a relationship breakup are similar to the stages of recovery from death of a loved one.
Knowing what these emotional stages are and understanding that your confused emotional feelings are normal can help you deal with the experience of coping with your emotions following a relationship breakup.
Here are the stages:
When you are faced with the loss of the person who was your partner in life, the pain can seem unbearable at times. Some days will be unrelentingly bad and others will be less painful. There is no cure for this pain but you will get through it and the pain will recede as time passes.
When your lover tells you the relationship is over it seems incredible and you can’t believe they have really walked away from everything you shared. In this stage, your mind simply refuses to accept what has happened and you believe there has been some awful mistake.
When the initial shock has passed, anger will take over. You will wonder why fate picked on you. You will be angry with the whole world, and with your lost love in particular. The feelings of anger are natural and unavoidable. However, you should take care not to lash out at friends or family who are trying to support you. You might be tempted to pour your anger out on your ex and this can lead to bitterness that will poison even your memories of the good times you had.
Depression is a natural feeling when you are missing the love and companionship you once enjoyed. Depression goes deeper than ordinary feelings of sadness, and some people will not be able to understand how you are feeling.
The Upward Turn
As you start to adjust to living your life without your partner, your emotions become more stable. If you had physical symptoms such as insomnia or lack of appetite, they lessen and your bouts of depression become less frequent and less profound.
As you get over the feelings of shock and depression, your body and mind will start to function more normally. This is the time when you will be able to concentrate more on reconstructing yourself as an individual and building a future for yourself.
When you reach this stage, you will have moved on. Being happy again actually seems possible and you will find you can look forward to the future.
The “seven stages of grief” is a well known phenomenon; there are distinct emotional stages you will experience but they won’t happen in a prescribed order and you might find yourself in a cycle where you keep repeating two or three of the stages. Sometimes you might feel you are experiencing several stages at once.
Experiencing the emotional stages of a relationship breakup is inevitable; we all have to go through them when we lose a loved one. There are no set time limits, and no strict order, to these feelings but they are all normal and living through these emotions is what will heal you and make you stronger when your partner has left you.