How do you accept a breakup you didn’t want and didn’t see coming? Acceptance doesn’t happen overnight, but you can ease the pain of an unwanted and unexpected breakup. These tips will help you accept that your relationship ended and move into a fresh new season of life.
Surrendering to what you can’t change is simple in theory, but so difficult in practice! Accepting a breakup and letting go of the relationship doesn’t mean you’re helpless or powerless. On the contrary, there is strength and healing in acceptance. Surrendering to reality gives you power and hope. The most important thing is not to lose heart, and to stay connected to the only eternal source of peace and joy.
On How to Let Go of Someone You Love, over 100 readers asked for help accepting a breakup. Here is one of the most common comments: “I am struggling on how to accept, understand and let go of the greatest relationship and person I have ever met and been with. He was not in the right emotional place to give me the future that I wanted. He said he loved me but didn’t love me as much as I loved him. He felt like something was missing and he couldn’t string me along if he isn’t 100% sure about me. How do I accept this and move on?”
One of the best tips for accepting a breakup is to keep reminding yourself that you won’t always feel this bad. Give yourself time to grieve your loss; you have, after all, lost someone you love. Be gentle with yourself as you move through the pain of breaking up with someone you care for. And, most importantly, use this time to reconnect with God. Your spiritual self has been neglected lately, hasn’t it? Renewing your relationship with Jesus will help you accept even the most painful breakup.
5 Tips for Easing the Pain and Accepting a Breakup
Here’s another comment from a reader:
“We were known as the sweet happy loving couple with a beautiful family at work, school, community, everywhere,” says Gloria on How to Cope When Your Husband Leaves You for Her. “Why do I love someone so much that did me so wrong? Ten years he cheated on me, and I believed all those lies. I am so mad at myself. I was just too comfortable and thought he loved me completely. I need advice please.”
The more you fight the fact that your relationship ended, the worse you will feel. The more you resist the breakup, the harder it will be to heal and move on.
On the other hand, if you learn how to accept a breakup you will heal faster. You will gain emotional strength and health, and you will be happy. Living in a state of acceptance and surrender will fill you with the power you need to create the life of your dreams.
1. Learn to live with the shadows of loss
In When You Don’t Feel Good Enough to Be Loved, I share the somewhat disheartening – but true – insight that some losses will never leave us. Accepting the fact that life brings suffering, especially when we allow ourselves the gift of love, will make accepting a breakup and letting go easier.
“There are certain events that we may never accept fully,” writes Melody Beattie in More Language of Letting Go: 366 New Daily Meditations. “What can be accepted, though, is that we are required to live with these losses and find a way to go on.” Melody’s book is a daily “devotional” that I read every morning. It takes less than five minutes to read her daily meditations, and they help me accept everything about my life. The good, the bad, the ugly. Accepting a breakup is a daily process – it may even take years for you to feel like you’re truly healed and ready for a new relationship.
2. Grieve slowly and be gentle with yourself
“It’s a sad day when you find out that it’s not accident or time or fortune, but just yourself that kept things from you.” – Lillian Hellman.
One of the worst things you can do to yourself is not grieve your loss. There’s a difference between obsessing about your ex and grieving the end of your relationship. Obsession is about hanging on to the past; grief is about processing what happened and moving into your future.
It is a huge blow to be have to accept a breakup you didn’t want. You may feel rejected, crushed, and disappointed. It’s awful to discover your partner didn’t love you the way you loved him. Rejection is painful, and betrayal is devastating. It’s important to go through the grieving process as part of accepting a breakup you didn’t want – but it’s also important to help yourself move forward.
3. Look for the moon
“Barn’s burnt down,” said Mizuta Masahide. “Now I can see the moon.”
The barn was your relationship: it was a safe place (even though it may also have been shabby, dirty, old or even unhealthy) for a season of your life. The fire was your breakup, which perhaps you even started. The moon is…what? You name it! Maybe it’s a chance to start a fresh life. Maybe you’ll challenge yourself in new ways – perhaps by getting a new job, learning new parenting skills, traveling to Italy, dreaming about becoming a writer, looking up old friends.
The breakup wasn’t your choice…but maybe it wasn’t a mistake. Maybe you wish you could turn back time and do things differently. Maybe you also know deep down that maybe your relationship wasn’t as good as you wanted, wished, or hoped for.
The hardest – and best – advice for accepting a breakup you didn’t want is to allow the idea that maybe your life could actually become better than it was before.
4. Start thinking about how you will reinvent yourself
For me, this is an easy tip on how to accept a breakup because I love change! I love new haircuts, new jobs, new experiences, new foods, new training programs for work, new trips to places I’ve never been. I even love Mondays because I never know what the week will bring.
But even for me, accepting a breakup or loss is painful. It hurts, and it’s not easy.
If you’ve been married for the past 25 years, the idea of suddenly reinventing yourself may not be easy or fun to think about. But just because it isn’t easy doesn’t mean it’s not right. Just because it’s difficult and painful doesn’t mean it’s not good. You won’t always feel this bad. You can accept this breakup, hold on to the best parts of yourself, and strengthen your weaknesses. You can be happy again…and you will eventually overcome the pain of breaking up.
5. Choose to let go and move on
In How to Let of Someone You Love: 3 Powerful Secrets (and 75 Tips!) for Healing Your Heart, I share valuable insights and help for women who need help letting go of someone they love after a breakup.
Learn how to emotionally detach and become free, healthy, and whole. Don’t let the weight of grief and suffering drag you under or make you bitter!
How to Let of Someone You Love is an ebook – which means it’s immediately available. You’ll learn how to pick up the pieces of your broken heart and move forward into a fresh new season of life.
Your thoughts — big and little — are welcome in the comments section below. Writing is a great way to untangle your thoughts and emotions, which will help you start healing your hurts.
May you find and accept the blessings and gifts in this breakup you didn’t want.