We’ve all been there – Heartbreak City. There are a thousand ways we visit, and to varying degrees of heartache. Sometimes it’s a slight funk that takes a few weeks to get over. Sometimes it is a life destroying, soul sucking, flaming roller-coaster ride through Hell. I have the dubious and unfortunate honor to have lived through the latter, which as fate would have it, makes me a bit of an expert on the subject. Due to the betrayal of those I loved most, I went through a bankruptcy/divorce and lost literally everything I knew and those I loved – family, friends, home, businesses, properties, money, reputation, dogs (that was the hardest, btw), and relocated to a town where I knew 4 people. On the plus side, I did lose 30 pounds and looked pretty damn good. I call it the “Despair-a-trim” diet. Though I do not recommend it, it certainly is effective.
Rather than let my visit to “The City” drop me into a pit of despair and ruin my life, I focused on the situation, gleaned everything I could, so that I would not only survive my worst fear, but thrive in the aftermath. Instead of wallowing, I have been traveling the world signing autographs, speaking in front of thousands, and now have an amazing new fiancé (who is a Pilates instructor, fitness product company President, and ex Miss California contestant, btw). I lost a cheating wife, and gained a massive upgrade. You too can upgrade your life in the midst of personal tragedy and come out the other side much better off.
At this point, you have to, as Neil says, “Become a scientist of your own lows.” This is precisely what did. You have to face the choices you made. Why did you choose her? What did you do to cause or contribute to the break up? This is no time for repression, rationalization, or denial. This is where you will become stronger than you ever believed you could be. You are going to assess where your issues truly stem from, by facing them head on. Your journey is just beginning, and by being open to the true reasons for what happened, your fault, or hers, you can and will heal yourself and come out the other side far stronger than you ever imagined you could be. And here are some tips from the battlefield to help you.
***For all of this, I am assuming that you are the one who has been dumped, assumably in an unceremonious fashion and need to survive.
Acknowledge the Pain.
Heartbreak hurts! No doubt about it. And for men it is physically worse. There are many reasons for this. We don’t talk to others about our pain, we withdraw to lick our wounds. We are protectors, it’s in our DNA, if we fail the relationship, we fail our prime duty. We also take longer to commit, but when we do, it is wholeheartedly and sincere. Women fall in (and out of) love quicker than men. We ramp up slowly like a freight train. If that train is derailed, it takes a long time to slow down, re-track, and correct course. All this, of course, after a fairly ugly explosion – screaming, fire, pandemonium; the usual.
This pain is very real and has immense physical consequences to your health. You want to minimize the amount of time you are hurting, as it can truly injure you, physically and mentally. Realize that you are in mourning. A life has been lost – yours. A love that you relied on has been taken away from you. It is just like a death, only worse, they chose to leave you alone and stranded after they promised they would not. In these cases there is no funeral to act as a transition. You don’t get to say goodbye. So take some time to allow yourself to feel the grief. Beat a punching bag, scream at God, cry like a little bitch (only when alone); whatever works for you. But let it out. If you keep it in, it will screw you up, and women will feel it. So, mourn, until you can move on, and only then attempt to date again. Otherwise, you may only succeed in driving yourself further into despair.
Knowing the pain exists and facing it is one thing. Prolonging it is another. You MUST NOT have anything to do with your ex if you can help it. NOTHING. Do not search her Facebook or any social media whatsoever. No emails, calls, or skywriting. You must move past. If you keep tabs on her, it will only hurt you more and prolong your recovery. As far as you are concerned, she is dead. Period.
Talk It Out.
This is no time to let your ego get in your way. As men, we always want to fix things. Well, here is a prime chance to do just that! And the project that needs fixing is you. It’s a great place to take a cue from our female counterparts. Talking will help you figure out what went wrong and help you heal. You are hurting, whether you want to admit it or not. Seeking help is not a sign of weakness. You can join a mens group for self-improvement, get some therapy, or talk to a friend who understands. Friends are the best. They are cheaper and they bring wine.
Once you have that friend who will support you and listen, only talk to them about your problems. Sharing openly with any and everyone can backfire. You don’t want to be the downer at every party, so just stick to talking to that one friend who agrees to act as your sounding board. I recommend a woman friend for this, but no one you would date. Any time you feel drawn to contact your ex, DON’T. Call your friend instead and talk to them.
My sounding board told me that I would have to talk about it until I was done. And true to her word, she always listened. Eventually, the purging sessions became fewer and fewer, until they basically went away. Had I not talked it out, who knows how long it would have taken me to move on. I wanted to get over it, and FAST! So, get over yourself, so you can get over your break up.
Do Things You Enjoy.
Get out there and spend time doing things you really enjoy doing, especially if it is something she was not interested in. You will open up a whole new side to your life that has absolutely nothing to do with your old one. I discovered sailing, something I never thought of before. And I love it. Enjoying the sun, sea, and chatting with a dolphin or two, is not only relaxing and invigorating, but it’s sexy as hell. I have wooed many a lovely on the deck of a boat.
Find something you enjoy ASAP. Get your mind off the past and onto your future. This will not only make you happy, but you just might find a lady with similar interests to help you along in the next step.
Meet Other Women
After your mourning period, it’s time to get back into the mix, my friend. This point is tricky though. You must be careful. You can hurt someone else here, by not being aware. You are in a state that is volatile and you could transfer your anger/frustration/despair onto other women over the slightest disappointment. So your best bet at this point is to NOT be interested in dating. I’m not saying that you won’t date, but that should be your mindset. This takes away the expectation that can lead to disappointment. Just enjoy the company of women. They are awesome.
All you want to do is get out there and meet people. Maybe a little bit at a time, but get out there. Take lots of pics with hot ladies and make sure you post ‘em online everywhere! Let people see that you are out there and awesome. When you find a lady that is interested in you, be honest with her. You don’t have to tell her everything, just that you are not ready for a relationship/commitment. Some women are totally cool with that and more than happy to enjoy a nice no strings attached sexcapade or two. But you must be honest, to her and yourself.
Now is the time to learn from the mistakes of the past and to prepare for your new brighter future. Own up to what you may or may not have contributed to the situation, then promise to never do it again. For example, I realize that I gave away a lot of my power as a man and therefore was not perceived to be strong to my wife. That led to her not respecting me and losing attraction. Which opened the door for her to stray. The fact that she and my closest pal were bereft of any hint of moral fiber didn’t help. You may have already discovered this, but some people just suck, and you never know until they are tested. Watch your back, always. The more you know about women, and yourself, the easier it will be to know when things are going awry.
Now is when you need to start studying the masters, like Neil, and how they changed their dating lives. The more you learn, the more you see the mistakes of the past; things you had no idea you were doing to sabotage your own life. Your life was shattered into a million pieces. The good news is that you have the power to rearrange the pieces to form a brand new life of your choosing.
Terrible things may have happened to you. And those who tell you to just “get over it,” have more than likely never gone through it. I have been there and I would never tell anyone to just get over it. I sincerely want to do my best to help you move forward confidently toward true success, so that your path to recovery and happiness is a short one. And if you have not gone through this, maybe I can help you avoid it altogether. Either way, we win. It is not easy, but in the end, you can have a much brighter future, with women of a much higher caliber, truer friends, and an amazing life full of real enduring love. Oh, and lots of hot steamy crazy monkey sex.
On the flip side, if you need to learn how to breakup, go here.