How to Handle Depression After a Breakup

Break-ups are never easy, no matter how amicable they may be. Dealing with a broken heart isn’t just some old tale. The fact is, going through a hurtful break-up can have real psychological effects, including depression. It can also be a trigger into deeper anxieties and depressive actions, if you’re prone to the condition.

While curling up with your favorite movie and a pizza might be the stereotypical remedy for getting over a bad break-up, there are better coping mechanisms to help pull you from the depression it might cause. Follow the tips below to help you get through this rough time, and know that what you’re feeling right now doesn’t have to be permanent.

Give Yourself Time

Many people might tell you to jump right back into the dating scene after a break-up, to take your mind off things and find someone new. Unfortunately, that’s likely to do more harm than good, and you won’t be giving yourself the time needed to fully get over what happened. It’s important to understand that you don’t need to get over a relationship overnight. Work through things at your own pace, and don’t expect to feel better right away.

Additionally, give yourself the chance to be emotional. It’s okay to cry, or feel angry, or even feel sad for a week or two. Suppressing your real feelings will make it harder to truly get over the split. These feelings won’t last forever, so don’t be ashamed to give yourself a release.

Keep Up With Your Routine

Sometimes, a split from your significant other can throw a huge wrench into your life – including something as simple as your daily routine. Sometimes, even having meals regularly and getting enough sleep can become chores after a break-up.

Try as best as you can to follow your regular routine after your relationship ends. This will be harder to do at first, but if you keep putting in the effort, the familiarity of that routine can provide comfort and help to reduce stress.

Spend More Time With People You Love

After a relationship ends, It’s easy to feel as though you’re all alone, or that no one cares about you. In reality, that’s likely very far from the truth. Don’t be afraid to tell the people closest to you what happened, and how you’re feeling. A strong support system is crucial after a break-up. Let them be there for you. They’ll help to take your mind off of things, and give you reassurance that you have some incredible people in your life.

Accepting the Truth

Accepting any hard truth is never easy. But, it’s important to think about what the end of this relationship means for you, and to realize that it wasn’t a waste. Being bitter about the end is only going to make it easier for depression to creep in. Instead, try to focus on things you may have learned, and what you can take with you into future relationships throughout your life. Moving on and moving forward, after giving yourself enough time to do so, is the best way to get through a break-up and fight back against depression that may want to linger because of it.

Dr. Jeffrey Ditzell is a Psychiatrist in New York City and specializes in issues involving Anxiety & Depression.