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Breaking up

A girl looking sad with a boy in the background.Breakups can be so hard! We can help you get through them.

How do I get over a breakup?

You may feel awful after a breakup. In fact, scientists say breaking up may have the same effects in a person's brain as getting off a drug like cocaine! But time really does help heal wounds.

Sometimes, people blame themselves too much for a breakup. Just because this relationship didn't work out doesn't mean there's something wrong with you. It just means this wasn't a good fit. Try to remember what's great about you.

Keep doing things you love. This might include hanging out with friends or writing in a journal. Learn ways to cope when you're feeling sad.

Give yourself a break. If the relationship is over, try to move on. Don't check your ex's social media accounts or find excuses to be in touch a lot.

How do I break up with someone?

Ending an abusive relationship

If you are ending an abusive relationship, you need to take special steps to stay safe. Learn more about leaving an abuser.

Here are some tips to help make a breakup easier — and kinder.

  • Remember your rights. You deserve to have the kind of relationship you want. It's OK to break up if this one isn't working for you.
  • Remember the other's person's feelings. Say what's true for you, but gently. Avoid blaming, complaining, or yelling. If you're feeling angry, try to calm down before talking.
  • Plan ahead. Think about what to say so you're not on the spot. You might practice with a trusted adult.
  • Face the person. Breaking up online or by text may seem easier, but think about how that must feel. Plus, when a person can't see your face or hear your voice, there's a greater chance of misunderstandings.
  • Leave others out. Don't spread nasty gossip or blab on social media. Meanness likely will lower other people's respect for you — and your respect for yourself!
  • Think back. Was there anything good about this relationship? Tell your partner what worked.
  • Think ahead. What can you learn from this about the kind of relationship you'd like to have in the future?


Content last reviewed September 16, 2015
Page last updated November 03, 2015