How to Accept a Breakup You Didn’t Want

You didn’t want to break up, but it happened. These tips on how to accept a breakup when you want to stay together will help you surrender, heal, and move on.

Surrender to what is. Accept your life as it is unfolding right now. Those two concepts are simple in theory, but o so difficult in practice! Surrendering to what is doesn’t mean you have no power in your life. Learning how to accept a breakup you didn’t want doesn’t mean you have to resign yourself to being single or unhappy the rest of your life. On the contrary, surrender and acceptance has the power to awaken hope and life in your soul. The most important thing is not to lose heart, and to stay connected to a 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?”

Here’s another sentiment many readers express when they’re struggling to accept a breakup…

“We were known as the sweet happy loving couple with a beautiful family at work, school, community, everywhere. 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.”

Accepting a Breakup You Didn’t Want

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.

If you learn how to accept a breakup with serenity and grace, 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.

Below are my tips on how to accept a breakup. But, it’s important to remember that what helped me accept breakups I didn’t want may not work for you. Your job is to find the beliefs, thoughts and activities that helped you accept difficult situations in the past, put those things into practice.

Learn to live with the wispy shadows of loss

In Accepting a Breakup – 5 Tips From Pandora’s Box, I share the sad insight that some losses will never leave us.

“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.” I read Beattie’s book every morning – it takes less than five minutes to read a daily meditation, 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.

Grieve, and give yourself what you need to move forward

“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.

Look for the moon

“Barn’s burnt down,” said Mizuta Masahide. “Now I can see the moon.”

How to Accept a Breakup
How to Accept a Breakup You Didn’t Want

The barn was your relationship: it was a safe place (stinky? dirty? old? shabby?) 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.

So the breakup wasn’t your choice…but is it 100% true that it was a mistake?

So you wish you could turn back time and do things differently…but do you also know somewhere deep inside that maybe your relationship wasn’t as good as you knew it could be?

The hardest – and best – advice for accepting a breakup you didn’t want is to make room for the idea that maybe your life could actually get better than it was before.

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.

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 can do this. You can accept this breakup, hold on to the best parts of yourself, and strengthen your weak bits. You can be happy again…and you will eventually read overcome the pain of a bad breakup.

Accept. Surrender. Take a deep breath. Hold on to the good, and let go of the past.

My prayer for you is that you see the blessings in this breakup. May you find your way to accepting the end of your relationship – even though you wanted to stay together – and may you embrace a new stage of your life. Above all, may you connect with God. You are so very, very loved. You need only reach out and experience that love.

I welcome your thoughts on how to accept a breakup you didn’t want…I can’t give advice, but you may find it refreshing to share how you will see the moon now that your barn is burnt down.


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