How Long Does it Take to Get Over a Breakup?

January 2, 2022

Breakups are the worst and can feel like it takes an eternity to heal from your previous relationship. Knowing what to expect and about how long it will take to heal can make the process a little easier for you. Here are three ways to help you heal after a breakup, according to relationship experts. 

  1. Use the 6 Month Rule

We know each relationship and person is different, that is why it is generally useful to use the 6 month rule. This rule states that it typically takes 6 months for every 1 year that you were with someone to heal. For example, if you were dating someone for 2 years, it would take 1 year to fully heal from that relationship. 

Every situation is different. When you have a long term relationship with someone extending the course of many years, it may take longer and more space to fully heal from that relationship than it would for a shorter-term relationship.

  1. Measure How Much “Work” you Have Done

According to divorce lawyer Susan J. Elliot, the amount of time it takes to get over a breakup depends on the amount of “work” you do post-breakup, including grief work, going through the relationship as objectively as possible, and doing affirmative steps to get over the relationship. 

The first (and one of the most difficult) steps to healing is to cut off all contact with your ex. If you must interact, keep interactions limited, brief, and business-like, only interacting when necessary. This emotional work is what helps you to heal and move on, and by limiting contact, you are allowing your body and mind to heal emotionally without reopening those wounds.

This “work” determines how long it takes to get over a breakup because it depends on how much and how often you do it. You could get over a relationship in a short period of time if you do the work, whereas if you do not put in the work, it could take forever to heal from that relationship.

  1. Test Your Feelings

Knowing about how long it may take to get over a relationship is also all about knowing your feelings. Take time to examine what happened in the relationship, why it ended, and also appreciate what you learned from the partnership, positive and negative. 

You might not even realize you are over a relationship until you test your feelings. Sometimes the only way to tell if you are over your ex is to start dating and getting to know new people. If, however, you begin dating again and realize that you cannot stop thinking about your ex or if you are simply feeling completely unmotivated to date, take it as a sign you need more time for healing and allow yourself that space to heal.

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