What a statement, eh?! Imagine never feeling heartbroken. I don’t think there’s a person alive right now who hasn’t felt this feeling at least once.
My first true heartbreak was probably when the pop-sensation band Steps split up in the early noughties, and this pain continued as every band I loved through my childhood took the same fate.
(Little did I know, years later that most of them would reunite in some way. Doesn’t that feel like a brilliant metaphor for all heartbreaks? Everything that is meant to be, will come back again)
But if you’ve ever watched a movie, read a book, binged a TV show or even just listened to those around you, you might be under the impression that heartbreak can only be experienced by those in love. Like romantic love. Like, like like, you know?
Which is so far from reality! I feel like most of the heartbreak we experience comes from everything else outside of a romantic relationship – yet that’s the only thing we see.
Heartbreak comes in so many different forms and I think the more we talk about it, the easier it’ll be to get through it.
Some examples of the way I personally have experienced heartbreak, that are not involving a romantic relationship:
(truth corner: I am currently still in my first relationship, and so far so good. I am hoping that I will not have to experience this kind of heartbreak anytime soon!)
- Family grief
Not to get too deep, but my family has experienced a lot of loss through my lifetime. Loss can sometimes not even be death, but rather illness or something extreme that changes a person you love so that they will never be the same.
And let’s not even get into the loss of pets!
- Rejection from work/school
This is my main source of heartbreak at the minute. Getting rejected from a dream job, when you’ve worked so hard and put every bit of effort in is the worst feeling ever. And I’ve faced that a canny bit recently – the joys of post-uni life!
- Friendship breakups
To be honest, I think a friendship breakup must be as painful as a romantic breakup. When you’re so used to seeing someone every day for however many years, it’s really hard to just walk away. I’m quite a sentimental person and find it hard to just let go of shit even when I know that it’ll be so beneficial in the long run (see my post on toxic friendships here for more).
- Getting the wrong idea
This one is just a generic one, but sometimes just being in the wrong or getting caught up in the wrong idea is heartbreaking too. When you genuinely thought you were going to get something (it could be a job, a friend, a partner or even a trivial material thing) it can be so awful to find out you’ve been wrong. Especially in this world where we’re told we can get everything we want if we work hard enough.
Heartbreak happens when we have passion and expectations. Whether that’s passion for someone else or passion for a project; expectations for ourselves or of others, when there’s a lot of big emotions involved we’re probably going to get hurt.
One of the most dangerous reactions to heartbreak though is shutting yourself down. If I don’t feel it, then I can’t get hurt right? WRONG.
Being vulnerable, feeling things deeply and honestly is the way you’re supposed to be. Sure you might get hurt but you only get hurt if you cared in the first place and that’s a wonderful thing to experience.
I think that anything bad that may happen, including heartbreak, brings it’s own lessons that you needed (but might not have wanted) to face. And that overall is a wonderful thing, and what we’re all about.
HOW TO DEAL WITH [UNROMANTIC] HEARTBREAK
This may also work for romantic scenarios.
- Allow yourself to be hurt for a while
I think there’s a lot of shame around feeling sad and it’s so ridiculous. If you’re feeling sad, or rejected, or upset, allow yourself to experience that! For a little while at least.
The more you try to push it away and hide it, the harder it’ll be to move on.
- Talk about it
Or write about it, or vlog about it. Do whatever you feel like you need to do to get these thoughts and feelings off your chest. I do recommend talking to an actual human being about it at some point though, but if at first you don’t feel like it; document it for yourself.
It’ll allow you to reflect and grow and ultimately result in you becoming better.
- Up your self care
When you’re feeling down, there’s nothing better to do than indulge in self-care. You should definitely do the essentials, but you can also use this time to pamper and really treat yourself. After all, everything needs to come from within so you might as well take care of yourself.
- Get back out there
This is the final step. Once you’ve allowed yourself to feel everything; you’ve documented it and reflected on it; you’re all preened and pampered now is the time to get back out that. Start dating again, apply for more jobs or courses, continue creating.
Don’t let heartbreak get in the way of living your life.
You got this.