Short Term Relationship Break Up: 5 Painful Truths And How To Overcome

Short term relationship break up can hurt more than any of our long-term relationships and sometimes we wonder why we spend so much of our energy pining for someone that doesn’t even matter much in our lives.

You probably would have met someone online and you both would have started talking to each other and things would have gotten intense and you find yourself falling for the person. Without giving it much thought, you both start to behave like lovers and probably would have confessed the feelings that you both have for each other.

Although something feels off but you brush it off thinking the “relationship moving fast but it feels right”. You might have feelings that you have not spent enough time getting to know this person but since things are moving at jet speed, you do not know how to pull the handbrake. 

One fine day, when all the little signs that it is not going to work out accumulate and now it feels like an elephant in the room, you both decide to part ways and it feels really sudden and your heart crashes so hard that you feel you’ve not come across a pain like this before.

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I’m Jasveena and I have been blogging since 2013, documenting my experience as well as helpful professional resources and tips I found online in seeking meaningful relationships and connections, and I am here to share them with you so that you are not alone in cruising through this journey called life that may seem like a lonely path.

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My Experience

Short term relationship break up can come in the form of situationships, one-sided love, or brief fleeting connections that two people experience.

I would define a short term relationship break up as a break-up that happens in a relationship that does not last for at least a year.

In my sophomore year, I experienced a short term relationship break up. In our 20s, we were all inexperienced and we would have jumped into relationships faster than ever. We do not really give it a thought and we just act upon our emotions without evaluating compatibility and long term goals.

As a walking adult, in my thirties, when I was actively dating, I have come across situations where I was invested in getting to know someone and somehow things didn’t work out and it took me a really long time to get over it. This mainly happens because we think that we will not be finding someone else like this person that we actually barely know. 

Later, I actually learned that it is our desperate need to get into a relationship that actually makes us fall for people who are not good for us and therefore short term relationship break up happen. On the other hand, we also do not have control over who we like and at one point we fall for someone. 

Given this unpredictable nature of love, what I learned is the fact that we cannot avoid falling in love and we cannot be very mechanical when it comes to love as a relationship can be successful even if two people decide to get into a relationship within days or weeks of getting to know each other.

However, what helps is actually to not beat ourselves up because we’re not supposed to be feeling sad about a short term relationship break up and we are not supposed to waste our time thinking about it. I’m sure your friends would have told you that it’s not worth thinking about this short term relationship, but that is not true because feelings are real regardless of the duration that you have been in touch with someone that you liked or loved.

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Short Term Relationship Break Up: 5 Painful Truths

1) The What Ifs Will Haunt You 

I like it or not, the what ifs will hunt you more than ever in a short term relationship break up because you have never explored enough in order to identify why it is not going to work out. Unlike a long-term relationship, where probably two people have worked hard enough to make things work they would have been convinced that it is not going to work out when they decide to part ways.

So, getting out of a long-term relationship can be easier because you probably would have had it enough and you just want to get over it.

However, in a short term relationship, you might have thoughts like “What if I give it some more time”, “What would have happened if I was patient enough to give him more chances?”, and “Does he even think about me?”.

2) You Keep Thinking About It

You might find yourself thinking about the short term relationship break up more than ever because that dopamine hit and the highs and lows of a new relationship made you think that this is going to be an exciting ride.

You keep thinking about it because things ended even before it actually started, and you think that you have not experienced it enough. Think about a child who was brought to a circus and right when he was getting excited about it, the parents brought him home. This is probably going to hunt him for the rest of his life because he was not able to experience it fully.

3) You Imagined Way Too Much About The Future

This is something all of us do when we get into a relationship especially when we are desperate to get into a relationship and we are desperate for a date. We start imagining things way too much about the future, things like sitting on the couch on a Sunday noon together watching TV and making out, having a few kids around, having your friends attend to your needs on your wedding day as our bridesmaids – you name it –  we start imagining about all these even before it happens.

This is the exact reason why a short term relationship break up can hurt so much because we actually feel that we have invested a lot in this person, that now it feels like you’ve been in a relationship for many years with this person and suddenly when you are breaking up it feels like your hope is being shattered.

4) It Hurts As Much As Any Relationship

This is the ultimate truth, whether or not you get into a relationship knowing that this person is not good for you, any short term relationship break up can hurt as much as a long-term relationship breakup.

Let’s hold some grace for yourself over here and not judge yourself for what has happened but have sympathy for your emotions. This is the first step towards healing and you have to understand that no matter what your friends and family tell you, your feelings are valid because it hurts.

5) Your Emotions Are Valid

We are often told that our emotions are not valid when we fall for someone and the short term relationship does not work out. How many of you have heard friends and family say “You actually do not know him well enough to fall in love with him”?

We are told that we’re not supposed to be feeling sad over someone that we barely know because it is foolishness. In fact, we are feeling sad because we think that we have lost someone that we thought we knew, but he or she turns out to be something else. 

What people forget is that although we might have had misconceptions about people and we might have fallen in love with the wrong people, our emotions are still valid and we are feeling the pain of it because we were genuine and they were not.

Acknowledging our pain will help to release it from our system and then we will be ready to analyze why it happened and take actions that are necessary in order to not repeat this bitter experience in the future.

Short Term Relationship Break Up: How To Overcome

  1. It Is Okay To Revisit Old Memories

I know that you will be thinking about it sometimes, probably like on a Sunday evening when you both had spent time together in the past and Sundays now remind you of this person.

Understand that it is normal for memories to visit you and just let it be. You do not have to act upon it and you do not have to suppress those emotions and memories from arising.

  1. It Is Normal To Feel Like Wanting To Try Once Again, But…

When those memories visit you, it is normal to feel like wanting to try once again, and you might stalk his profile, trying to text him and see if he is online. I’ve been there and I know so many of you reading this right now have been there, the desperate feeling to reach out to this person and talk to them again is real. 

However, what makes it worse is the effort to rekindle the old flame. If you initiate conversation, it is going to make your healing process longer and you will not be getting out of this toxic, vicious cycle sooner than you can.

Leaving memories and thoughts as they are and not acting upon it will help you to heal faster.

  1. Block Them and Go No Contact

You have to understand that when a memory arises in your thoughts, it’s going to be there for less than a minute. This is similar to emotions like anger and frustration that arises in your mind. That sensation is going to be there for a fleeting moment only.

However, if you act upon it, it is going to be longer in your system and you are reinforcing that experience over and over again by your actions. 

So, if you decide to add this person back to your social media, you will start thinking about them even more than you did before. Therefore you should be blocking them and going no contact because this will heal you faster.

  1. Become Aware of Your Thoughts

This is extremely crucial if you need to focus on yourself and your healing process. What you need to do is to become super aware of your thoughts.

If you find yourself thinking about this person too much and you are starting to feel pain and you are revisiting old memories, catch yourself by telling yourself that I am revisiting the old memories and this is not going to help my healing process. 

You can then add words of affirmation like “it is okay for my thoughts to think about the past but I am detaching myself from the past and I am no longer living in the past. I am excited about the future and whatever it holds for me.”

By doing it this way, you put your awareness on the forefront and you take responsibility for your thoughts. You also acknowledge that these thoughts are detrimental to your well-being. Sooner or later you will teach your mind that it is not healthy to think about this aspect of your past.

  1. Remember The Disrespect & Tell Yourself You Deserve Better

So, whatever happened in the past with this person that you have had a short term relationship break up with is because of incompatibility and something that had hurt you.

This person might have been disrespectful towards you and strung you along. You need to remember the disrespect and you have to tell yourself that you deserve better. 

But what if he was a nice person and he treated me well but things just didn’t fall in place? I know this is going to be harder than ever because finding someone who’s nice but not in the position to reciprocate your feelings or commit to you will disappoint you a lot. 

You may not have anything to remember about him being disrespectful towards you but what you need to tell yourself is the fact that you would not be compatible and he’s not able to meet your needs is already something that makes it a deal breaker.

It’s easier said than done, I know, but you will get there if you practice enough self-care. First, love yourself. You will soon find it easier to let go of things that do not serve you well.

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How to break up with a short-term relationship?

Depending on how long you both have been in a short-term relationship, and how good this person has been treating you, you might want to meet them in person to break up with them so that they feel they are important and you have given them enough thought to express your decisions in person.

However, if your relationship has not progressed much other than just a few dates, and if you have never met their family members, or if this person has been toxic towards you, you might want to break up with them through text messages or phone calls.

How to break up with someone you’ve been dating for a short time?

Be honest and direct about your decision. You could highlight the positive aspects of your experience dating them in this short period of time. You can say that you appreciate them and their time. And then, start highlighting the facts that make you think it is not going to work out and be clear about it.

If it is something about sensitive aspects of themselves like sexual incompatibility that you do not want to explain in detail, you can just simply say that you do not feel it with them. Because, essentially compatibility is not just about checking the list that one has but it is also more about how you feel about someone that cannot be explained logically.

Why do short-term breakups hurt?

Breakups hurt because we have an emotional investment in them. We might have caught feelings for the real fast and we would have thought that this is going to be the last time we are falling in love and this is going to be our forever person. Short term breakups hurt because it feels like we are not done with it yet. We have not experienced and explored the relationship enough for us to really come to terms with the breakup.

How long should a temporary breakup last?

A temporary breakup should not last longer than a couple of weeks. According to studies, people will start to move on after eight weeks of a breakup. Therefore, if you do not have a plan to reconcile with your partner within this period of time, it can be hard to patch back with them.

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