A romantic relationship with another person can be an extremely beautiful experience. One’s first relationship, however, proves to be a one-of-a-kind experience unlike no other. One that will always be unmatched to any other relationship. Dopamine levels are at an all time high as the pair are in the midst of joining together to create something new and exciting. But what happens when all of the happiness that came from that relationship goes away? What happens when it is suddenly over and you are newly single again?
I am currently “going through” my first breakup. When people told me that they were “going through” a breakup, I always wondered what that meant; and now I am finally on the other side of the playing field as I myself am learning what that phrase means. First of all, a breakup is not easy. At least for me it is not. If one is coming out of a toxic relationship, then perhaps it may be easy, but even so, it is not my place to say as everyone feels differently and rightfully so. My first relationship, though, was not toxic. I shared some of the best times of my life with my ex-boyfriend and we shared many wonderful memories and dates with each other. There will be many stories to share with select friends and family as I continue to process my feelings and try to heal the wound that rests upon my heart at the moment.
Providing my ex-boyfriend with exuberant amounts of attention and affection for the months leading up to our breakup (and before we started dating) brought me nothing but joy. I loved making someone feel appreciated. I loved to listen to his daily rants and I loved laughing at his silly jokes. I loved to see his smile, which then transferred to my face. I loved that he was my boyfriend. The key word here is “loved,” with emphasis on the “-ed.” Those two letters at the end of a word signal the past tense, meaning no more; and that right there is an extremely hard pill to swallow. I have been trying my absolute best to wrap my head around this newfound reality. However, no matter how much effort I put into trying, my mind still veers toward all of the “what-ifs” and the present becomes a distant memory. This is something that I need to improve upon. Mind you, this process of healing will not become perfected overnight. It will take time and is something that must not be rushed.
One of the many things on the long list that I am feeling at this moment is sadness. Sadness is such a broad term for a mixture of sub-emotions one can feel when they say they are “sad.” For me, one way to express what I am feeling is through tears. Crying helps me to release what is making me feel pain and what is causing me to ache. Crying needs to continue to be normalized, especially as a coping mechanism. If you ever feel wrong for crying or if you identify as a male and are told, “Real boys don’t cry,” please try to understand that that is far from the truth. If you want to cry, you have every right to. Usually I feel better after a good cry. It can even be therapeutic as it forces me to take a moment out of my day to reflect on the good and the bad and to organize all of my thoughts. Think of it as this: tears represent rain coming down from the sky, washing onto grass and plants in order for them to become nourished.
Aside from crying, I have also taken up coloring, which has proven to become extremely relaxing. I also love to watch ASMR videos. If you have never heard of ASMR, I highly recommend searching it on YouTube. These videos vary but what I have been loving so much lately are the videos that include personal attention. In these types of videos, the YouTuber performs various activities with you, such as doing your makeup, doing your eyebrows, or giving you a haircut. There are even certain videos where the person will help you with your sadness by acting as a friend by giving you advice, words of encouragement, or even hugging you. They have helped me immensely when I am feeling alone and when I feel like I have no one with which to talk.
Through all of my coping mechanisms, I have to realize at the end of each day that I need to focus on myself. That is my #1 priority right now and what is most important. I have to love myself and provide myself with attention in order to grow. My needs have to be met in order for me to meet someone else’s. With that being said, in order to safely recover and heal from relationships, one must realize that it is harder to let go than to hold on. One must do their best to not think too much about the past. Of course it is perfectly healthy to reminisce about all of the amazing times you had with that person but that cannot stop you from eventually moving on and thinking about the fact that one day you will be able to create new memories with someone else.
It is very important to take all the time you need to heal. While it may not seem like it right now, if you are going through a breakup, whether from your first relationship or not, I promise you that you will find love again. You will find someone else to create more beautiful memories with. If no one has told you recently, you are strong and I believe in you.