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How to get over a breakup

Three rules for moving on

Splitting up sucks. You got dumped, you cut them loose, sometimes it doesn’t even matter. The fact is, there’s pain, sadness and anger, and that’s not going to change quickly. These days, getting over a split may be tougher than ever. The old method of getting over an old flame involved nothing more complicated than a tub of ice cream. These days, your tactics have to be tech-savvy.

Facebook and Twitter make it incredibly difficult to move on because you’re bombarded with reminders of the guy/girl on a daily, even hourly basis. Plus, texting means keeping contact is easy and impersonal, causing a lot of confusion and mixed emotions. Unless you take specific actions to address these issues, you’re in for a rough time.

RULE 1: Block them on Facebook pronto
Seeing a tagged photo of your former partner with their arms around someone else is pretty much the last thing you need to add to your freaked-out state of mind during this mourning time. Even if there’s nothing as blatantly agony inducing as that, little news-feed updates or minor profile tweaks serve as constant reminders of him that will start to eat away at you. Remember the phrase, “out of sight, out of mind?” It’s a cliche because it’s true. You need a clean break to get your head straight. Later, once you’ve healed, you can always unblock the person, but right now, don’t torture yourself.

RULE 2: Watch What You Post Online
Once you’re kind of done with crying, you usually enter that pissed-off phase. You are angry that it didn’t work out and want to show them you can do better or, at least, you’ve moved on. Technology facilitates doing that, but don’t go there. Putting a G-chat message that says something like “Can’t wait for my date tonight!” or tagging a picture of yourself hugging some random cutie at a bar can backfire. It’s easy to fool yourself into thinking that you’re getting over it because you’re seeing other people and publicizing how fun your life is now, but if you’re posting your every move with the hope that your ex sees it, you’re really just keeping yourself wrapped up in your old relationship, and your ex will probably be smart enough to see your real motives. Besides, do you really want to publicize your rebounding online for all to see? No.

RULE 3: Whatever You Do, Don’t Text Them
Eventually, you’ll get to the post-split emotion of missing them, which usually happens when you’ve been broken up for a while. You may start to forget why you went your separate ways or think the reasons you did so no longer seem like a big deal. Those feelings can cause you to make a major mistake.

Calling the person is tough because you have to put yourself through the pain of hearing their voice, or because you’re worried you’ll look dumb if they don’t answer, and then you might leave an equally dumb voicemail. Texting removes those emotions, right? Wrong. By texting, you’re backing down, and this is no time to be weak. Plus, you’ll probably end up reading and re-reading “hey, what’s up?” a dozen times trying to analyze the words. And if they text you? The key is to keep it short and sweet. Write something nice, but don’t invite more.

If your own well-being isn’t a good enough reason for you to take our advice, think of it this way: No matter how witty your texts, how hot you look in your photos or how busy and awesome you make your life appear through status updates and wall posts, nothing will drive your ex crazier than knowing nothing about you at all. Want to make them ache as bad as you do? Drop off the planet. Not only does it make their minds run a million miles an hour, but it gives you the peace you need to move on and find a better match.

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