Breakups suck, but a holiday breakup is even worse. It's supposed to be a happy time, but you don't exactly feel at your perkiest. Plus, friends and family are full of questions. While it might not be easy, the holidays don't have to be ruined. Brace yourself and learn how to best handle a holiday breakup and still be at least a little cheerful.
1. Focus on the Holiday
One of the best ways to deal with a holiday breakup is to put all your focus on the holiday itself. Go to a party, volunteer, go to a holiday event, decorate or do anything else holiday related. The idea is to take advantage of the holiday activity and immerse yourself so deeply you don't have time to feel sorry for yourself. By the time it's all over, you'll feel a little better.
2. Prepare a Simple Answer
If family and friends know about the other person, they will ask questions. The key is to plan ahead and prepare a simple answer to the “why did you breakup?” They don't need to know all the details. They don't need an in-depth description of how you feel. Tell them you broke up, you feel a little down and you'd prefer to talk about something else. If they can't respect that, talk to someone else or leave for some alone time.
3. Remember It's No Different
In all honesty, holiday breakups aren't really any different to any other breakup. The timing might not be the best, but the breakup itself is the same. Instead of focusing on how the holidays are ruined, enjoy the holidays and deal with the breakup the same as you would any other time of year. Listen to some sad music or cry on a friend's shoulder. The next day, decorate your house and go to a fun party.
4. Avoid Any Shared Social Activities
If you have mutual friends, you're probably both invited to the same events. Ask your ex to skip half the events so neither one of you has to deal with the pain of seeing the other. If they're not accommodating, talk to your friends about it. Trust me, some will be on your side. They'll be happy to help you host your own party without your ex involved.
5. Give Yourself Time to Deal
You don't have to force yourself to be immediately happy just because it's the holidays. Breakups hurt. It's okay to spend some time feeling sorry for yourself and dealing with the pain. Everyone will understand if you need some time alone. Taking a few days to yourself will help you cope and feel a little better when it's time to face everyone again. Plus, it gives you time to relax some before jumping into holiday activities.
6. Get Support
Though it might feel like you're alone, you're not. It's okay to ask for support. Talk to a family member or friend. Get out all the anger, frustration and sadness. Cry your eyes out or beat on a pillow. Grab someone who cares about you and let them help make you feel better. It's also good if you can have a supportive friend by your side at gatherings to help deflect some of the questions.
7. Think about the New Year
The holidays mean a new year is about to arrive. So what if you just broke up? It's a new year and a new you. All the breakup means is you have a chance to start over. You can change whatever you want without worrying about what your partner might think. Make a list of fun resolutions to make you feel stronger and more confident. Suddenly, the breakup won't seem so bad.
8. Skip the Sad Stuff
I know we're all guilty of listening to sad music or watching a sappy movie after a difficult breakup. The holidays are full of happy music and inspiring holiday movies. Why make your sadness worse? Take advantage of the holiday cheer and skip all the usual sad stuff. The more happiness around you, the more likely you are to feel happy too.
9. Buy Yourself Something Special
If you haven't already exchanged gifts, take the money you would've spent on your ex and buy yourself something special. While it won't make the breakup pain magically go away, it does make you feel a little happier. Plus, it shows life goes on. If you're able to shop and find joy in a small gift, you're able to heal and move on.
I hate the thought of breaking up around the holidays, but it does happen. It hurts, but remember your heart will heal and you can still enjoy the cheery season. It won't always be easy, but you will be okay. Have you ever had to deal with a holiday breakup?