The feeling of being in love is like no other. You’re on top of the world. Everything seems perfect. We all want our happily ever afters. We put our time and effort into making the relationship work. Break rules, do things we never thought we could — all for love. Yet, some relationships end no matter how hard we try. And it leaves you wondering how to cope with breaking up with someone you love.
Breaking up is never easy. But as painful as a breakup might be, it’s better than dragging out a relationship past its expiry date. Holding on to a relationship that’s not working out harms both you and your partner. If one of you is not happy, then neither one of you can be happy. Sometimes it’s just better to let go.
How To Know It’s Time To Break Up With Someone You Love
We’ve all been fed the ‘love overcomes all obstacles’ story. Right from Shakespeare’s sonnets to Friends, we’re forever being told to hold on to love. But here’s the thing. Some things don’t last forever. And that’s okay.
While there is no such thing as a perfect relationship, all couples think of ending things at one point in their lives. More often than not, they can address the issue and stay together. But there are times when it’s just impossible to make things work.
When a relationship stops being something that comforts and supports you and turns into a toxic relationship, it is time to break up with someone you love. Love should not feel like a burden. If it does, it’s not love anymore. Here are a few red flags to look out for.
Why Would You Break Up With Someone You Love?
Relationships are a two-way street where both partners have to put in the effort to make it work. This needs more than romance and starry eyes – it takes dedication and practice. That doesn’t sound very romantic, in fact, we sound like your gym teacher, but it’s true!
1. Unmet needs
For Melanie and Michael, while everything seemed smooth on the surface, there were little, niggling doubts underneath. Melanie was someone who needed plenty of emotional validation. She wanted the hearts and flowers and mushy text messages. Michael, though he loved her, wasn’t demonstrative and it bothered her more than she admitted. But, was it a valid reason to break up?
Again, why would you break up with someone you love, especially when mostly, it seems to be working. But your needs, no matter how small, are important. You deserve to be fulfilled in your relationship. Maybe you’ve tried to talk to your partner, but they just don’t get it, or their personality is such that they cannot change. Well then, it’s time to let go.
2. When love begins to feel like an obligation
If your wishes and dreams tend to take a backseat in love, and your lover’s needs are a top priority, you may want to re-think this relationship. It makes you happy to do the smallest of things for your loved one. You can’t stand being away for long. You want to talk to them, meet them, be with them as much as possible. But when these things begin to feel like a responsibility, your relationship is in jeopardy.
Worse, if your partner starts expecting you to put their needs above yours at all times, that’s definitely a red flag you should not ignore.
A lot of people are in love with the idea of being in love. But the giddy feeling that love gives in the first few months tends to fade over time. And the person is made to face the stark realities of a relationship. This is where companionship comes into play. And when even the company of a person feels like a chore, then your love story is coming to an end.
3. Abuse is a sign that it’s time to break up with someone you love
It is challenging for a person to break out of an abusive relationship. By the time the actual abuse begins, the abuser has already gained control of the victim’s mind. The victim firmly believes that they deserve this treatment, that this is love.
Even after a person gets out of an abusive relationship, they have difficulty coming to terms with what happened. They might struggle in regards to how to cope with breaking up with someone you love. Seek professional counseling. And give yourself time to heal.
There’s no beating about the bush here. If you happen to be in an abusive relationship, it’s in your best interest to end the relationship. Abuse doesn’t just affect you physically but mentally as well. It eats away at your person until nothing but a shadow of your original self remains. Walk away, you deserve better.
Related Reading: 5 Signs Of Emotional Abuse You Should Watch Out For Warns Therapist
4. You’ve started to drift apart
You might be living together under the same roof, but could still be miles away from each other. Often a few years later, when the honeymoon period has passed, there is a steep drop in the communication and efforts required to keep the spark alive. This causes an emotional distance in the relationship and before you know it, you have drifted apart.
Frequently, a couple who are in a long-distance relationship can grow apart while being in love with each other. Breaking up when you’re still in love but on different paths can get quite problematic.
A lot of times, these situations can be fixed. But maybe you have tried to work on the issue and there is no reciprocation from your partner. Or you might be working on it, but you see no difference, and you can’t close the distance between you two. It’s time to break up with someone you love. Sad, but true.
5. You’ve changed too much for them
Change is inevitable. As you grow older, you evolve as a person. Relationships contribute a lot to our personal growth. Love makes us want to be a better person for our partners. After all, they deserve the best.
However, when you change to the point that you don’t recognize yourself anymore, it feels off. As much as it’s good to grow, it is essential to be loved for who you are. Your quirks and traits make your essence. And that’s what makes you beautiful.
Human beings are like elastic bands. They can only stretch to a point, after which they break or snapback. If you feel that you have changed drastically and the change doesn’t make you happy, it’s time to change your relationship status.
6. You’re just two very different people
If you believe in science and your partner believes in witch doctors, chances are the relationship won’t survive long term. Differences make our relationships spicier, but there has to be some common ground. If your core values are not the same or even similar, it will give rise to many conflicts in the future.
Our values are things we grow up with. They have made you the person that you are today. Breaking up when you’re still in love but on different paths is complicated, no doubt, but it is also unfair to ask someone to give up their core values for you. You must accept each other for who you are.
9 Ways To Cope With Breaking Up With Someone You Love
We’ll say it again, breakups are hard no matter the reason. It could be because your partner cheated on you or because the distance created a rift in the relationship. Or it could be that you still love each other but realized you are not meant to be. No matter the reason, breakups are the worst.
A breakup can often leave you feeling devastated, grasping at straws and wondering how you can possibly survive the excruciating pain of heartbreak. Insecurities creep in and the never-ending loop of memories, dreams, and possibilities becomes overwhelming.
We’ve put together a little care package of 9 things that you can do to ease the pain and heal.
1. Deal with your feelings
In a bid to get over a breakup when you still love each other, you might try to suppress your feelings. It does not help. Suppressed feelings don’t disappear. They might burst forth at the most inopportune moment. You do not want to have a meltdown at an ice cream parlor because they ran out of sprinkles.
Instead, take time to process what you are feeling. Identify each emotion one by one, acknowledge them, and work towards getting through them. Slow and steady.
Related Reading: How to Move On Without Closure? 8 Ways To Help You Heal
2. Mutual breakup but still love each other? It’s not your fault
Breakups happen. While sometimes it’s circumstantial, sometimes it’s downright necessary. Often, in this case, we end up blaming ourselves. Were we too demanding? Should we have compromised more?
Under such circumstances, if you have decided to go in for a mutual breakup but still love each other immensely? Don’t blame yourself. Sometimes it’s impossible to save a relationship.
How to cope with breaking up with someone you love? Talk to each other and figure out how to manage the breakup and heartache. Discuss what will be better, a complete severance of the relationship, or to be friends and help each other get over a breakup when you still love each other. And remember, sometimes it really is nobody’s fault.
3. Out of sight. Out of mind
It’s virtually impossible breaking up with the love of your life. It’s twice as difficult to forget them. You thought you had something beautiful and you tried to capture all the lovely memories. There are songs you listened to together, and the way he always saved extra chili flakes for your slice of pizza.
All these beautiful reminders remind you of what you had and what you lost. It’s better to avoid all the things that might trigger a memory of the person you have broken up with. Put them in a box. Put the box in the basement and lock up the basement. (Hopefully, the basement floods.) Having constant reminders of the relationship will make the process of moving on longer.
4. Get a support system to help you to move on
After Cathy and Alex broke up, Cathy found that being alone in the apartment they had shared was just too much. Determined to move on, she reached out to close friends and asked if she could stay with them for a few days. She also started going out more and even planned a trip with her parents.
Having a support system during such a time helps immensely. Stay with your parents for a few days. Get in touch with your friends and spend time with them. Not only can you vent freely in their presence, but they will console you, comfort you and help you get back to normal. Or at least to a functional place.
Your friends and family understand you and know exactly how to penetrate the fog of sadness that you feel. Let them wrap you up in a big, cozy blanket of love.
Related Reading :How To Get Through A Breakup Alone?
5. Self-love to get over a breakup when you still love each other
There’s nothing like focusing on yourself to help get over a breakup. Take yourself on dates. Treat yourself to that new pair of shoes or new bubble bath.
Work on something you always wanted to do. Maybe you want to brush up on your photography skills. Or learn to jet-ski!
This will work as a distraction and stop you from obsessing over the breakup. You tend to sacrifice a lot in a relationship. Now is the time for a little self-love.
6. Breaking up with the love of your life? Make a list
Make a list of all the things you loved about your relationship and then make a list of all the things that were wrong with it. It will be difficult in the beginning. But as you write and relive the memories, it will help you see the beauty of what you had, but also why you needed it to end.
By the time you come to the end of the list. It will be apparent to you why you broke up in the first place. This trick will help you process your feelings better.
7. Don’t wallow in it
Shed as many tears as you need to feel better. Vent and storm about if you want to. Do whatever you have to get it out of your system. Take your time to heal, but don’t wallow in your grief. Feeling sorry for yourself for long durations is self-destructive. If you think it’s going on too long, seek professional help.
Watching videos of the two of you, looking at the pictures, again and again, will only delay the healing process and undo all the progress you have made so far. Learn when to let go.
8. Don’t get in touch with them
We know, we know, this goes for all breakups and should be obvious. But since we’re human and since love makes fools of us all, we’re telling you again: Do not call or send that ‘innocent’ text’.
It’s normal to miss someone after a breakup, especially if it’s someone you still love. But it’s also important to remember the real reason why you broke up.
Even though you might want to get back together, remember you already did all you could to save the relationship. And there is nothing more you can do about it. Being in touch immediately after a breakup only makes it more painful and confusing. Spare yourself.
9. This too shall pass…
Breaking up with the love of your life can be very depressing. And as hard as it might be to believe, time heals all wounds. This pain of heartbreak that you feel right now will eventually fade with time. And soon, you will begin to feel like yourself.
Remember, there is a life beyond the pain and uncertainty of this breakup. Hang in there. Give yourself time to heal. No matter how bad it gets, persevere through. Initially, you will constantly be thinking about it. But after a while, you will notice the frequency of the thoughts has reduced drastically.
When you are able to recollect the memories of your relationship and your partner without pain, and maybe even a smile, you will realize you have moved on. It will always be bittersweet, but you finally did it.