Breakup purgatory is a subject that I have never seen discussed, nor defined (or even attempted to be named) when it comes to a breakup. I guess it’s hard to put in to words.
So, what exactly is “breakup purgatory” when it comes to a breakup? Let’s just assume that it’s a few weeks/months down the line and you’re carrying out the suggestions in this guide. You’ve improved your confidence tenfold, you’re psyched to go to your next karate lesson/wine tasting tour/train spotting session/Sky Diving (or whatever), your fitness has improved and you’ve redefined your goals for a better life and are putting things in to practice…
Things have never been better and things are certainly looking up, but there’s something niggling at you and you can’t seem to shake it. You’re thinking about your ex girlfriend a lot less than you did, but you’re still thinking about her every now and then. Somewhere inside you, a little part of you still wants her. Not in the way that you once obsessed over, but you do want her to contact you, just to say that she still wants you.
I call this “breakup purgatory” or even “no man’s land” because you’re not really pigeon-holed in any of the stages of emotions that we discussed. You’re leaving the depression stage and slowly, but surely moving in your own pace towards the acceptance stage. Also, men have huge egos that we need caressing on a constant basis. Do yourself a favour and keep on doing what you’re doing, because you are without any doubt – going in the right direction.
Signs you are wandering in no man’s land:
. You see couples walking together outside; you feel a little sad but not intensely despondent and it makes you reminisce about your ex. (Remember you can choose your thoughts).
. You feel a little pissed off/embarrassed for still wanting her considering you’ve been doing so well lately. (Don’t be, you should be proud that you’ve moved on so much to this point, you’re at touching distance of your goal – don’t go backwards).
. You keep checking your phone and emails in the off chance she’s got in touch with you. (All healing takes some length of time, don’t beat yourself up about it).
. You no longer mind frequenting the places she hangs out but you keep an eye open especially for her when there. You also keep your ears open to how she might be or what she might be doing. (It might be a good idea to stay away until you’re fully recovered. Setbacks are normal in this game but there’s no point in inducing one).
The key thing you must understand here is that you must not beat yourself up over this. It’s not a setback, it’s a mere common thing that happens to all men/women who are aiming to get over their ex and on with their life. Celebrate that you’ve been strong enough to take big action at such a difficult period in your life.
No summaries or exercises are left for the remaining few chapters. Keep on keeping on and you’ll get there. Stay strong. Get that chin up!