The five stages of breaking up



By Alison Carson

The proverbial break up message. You get it in person out of the blue, a text, an e-mail … and instantly you’ve just gotten the wind knocked out of you. If you’re the person who finally got the courage to break the news, all you can hear is Martin Luther King’s epic “free at last.” It’s enough to put a smile on your face.

Upon receiving the shattering news that you are no longer even qualified as satisfactory in someone’s life, it can feel a lot like a death sentence.

Psychologists say those who are dying go through five main stages before they finally come to terms with the reality at hand. If you have gone through a break up anytime soon — you know it all too well.

It starts with denial and isolation. Grim, I know. You find yourself locked in your “man cave” listening to somber music like Coldplay, throwing yourself a pathetic pity party. Your friends try to coax you out of the black hole of isolation you’ve thrown yourself in, but its basically impossible. Unless Megan Fox knocks on you’re door, you’re not getting over the ex.

In fact, you may even find yourself in disbelief that the other person actually dumped you. If you are clinging on to pictures and staring at your phone in hopes they’ve changed their mind, you’re in denial. It’s best you put the scrapbook of your cutest moments down.

Next is anger. Suddenly you find yourself in enraged. Who are they to break up with you? They aren’t even that cute anyways. The sheer adrenaline brought on by the thought of what he did is enough to make you that creepy “Carrie” girl from the horror movie. Instead of going all bananas on the guy, what you should really be doing is channeling your inner “Carrie Bradshaw.” Even if red is your color, your girlfriends, shoes, and Cosmos always trump going psycho on your loser ex.

The next stage is where things can get a little embarrassing — bargaining. After a couple of weeks being very single you begin to panic. You end up making over-analyzed, borderline-desperate attempts at convincing the other person you need them back. However, desperate attempts are usually subject of jokes with all of their friends immediately after.

Once you’ve realized, you’re definitely not getting her back, depression sets in. The realization that she is now seeing a ripped guy on the football team is as much as you can bear.

Not even funny movies and hanging out with friends works. Next thing you know, you look in the mirror and you realize you haven’t shaved in nine days, giving you a slightly homeless look. This would be rock bottom.

There is hope. The final stage is acceptance. After two boxes of Kleenex and six weekends of meltdowns at the sight of cute couples, you find yourself being okay. Slowly but surely you find yourself feeling like the old you and are even back to eating solid foods again.

No matter what stage you are in the process of a break up, it’s not always easy. You can take time to lick your wounds. Or crash the boards as hard as Demarcus Cousins on the rebound.

Alison Carson is a journalism sophomore. E-mail [email protected].