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Jehovah’s Witnesses

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YOUNG PEOPLE ASK

How Can I Deal With a Breakup?

“After my girlfriend and I broke up,” says Steven, “I had what I can only describe as a meltdown. It was the most intense emotional pain I’ve felt in my life.”

Have you had a similar experience? If so, this article can help you.

 How it feels

A breakup is bound to cause pain for both parties involved.

  • If you initiated the breakup, perhaps you can relate to Jasmine, who says, “Knowing that I hurt someone I cared about was a burden on my conscience that I hope never to carry again.”

  • If you did not initiate the breakup, you probably understand why some have called the experience a mini-death. “I actually went through the stages of grieving,” says a young woman named Janet, “including denial, anger, bargaining, depression, and finally—nearly a year later—acceptance.”

The bottom line: A breakup can leave you feeling downhearted and despondent. As one Bible writer put it: “A crushed spirit saps one’s strength.”Proverbs 17:22.

 What you can do

  • Talk to a mature confidant. The Bible says: “A true friend shows love at all times, and is a brother who is born for times of distress.” (Proverbs 17:17) Pouring out your feelings to a parent or a mature friend can help you gain perspective.

    “For months I isolated myself and didn’t talk to anyone about my feelings. But friends can help the healing process. It wasn’t until I opened up to them that I found a measure of relief.”—Janet.

  • Learn from what happened. Another Bible proverb says: “Acquire wisdom, acquire understanding.” (Proverbs 4:5) Unpleasant experiences can teach us a lot about ourselves and how we handle disappointment.

    “After the breakup, a friend asked me, ‘What did you learn from the relationship, and how can you use what you learned when you date someone in the future?’”—Steven.

  • Pray. The Bible says: “Throw your burden on Jehovah, and he will sustain you.” (Psalm 55:22) Prayer can help you work through your grief and view the breakup from a different perspective.

    “Pray constantly. Jehovah understands your pain and knows the situation better than you do.”—Marcia.

  • Help other people. The Bible says: “Look out not only for your own interests, but also for the interests of others.” (Philippians 2:4) The more you get involved with helping others, the sooner you will be able to see the breakup in perspective.

    “A breakup feels like the end of the world, and it hurts worse than physical pain. But I found that it does get better. I just had to give it time and let myself heal.”—Evelyn.

Learn More

AWAKE!

When a Courtship Ends

How can you move on with your life after a painful breakup?

AWAKE!

What Can I Expect From Marriage?—Part 1

What kinds of benefits and challenges can you realistically expect from marriage?

AWAKE!

What Can I Expect From Marriage?—Part 2

Learn how you can prepare for the unexpected challenges of married life.