Seeing an old flame with somebody new can suck. Here are six tips for coping when your ex moves on
Oh no. Does this mean that it’s really over? If they moved on before me, does that mean that I cared more for them? How did this happen? These are just a few of the questions that might be running through your mind after seeing an unwelcome relationship update. Here are some tips and advice for coping when your ex moves on.
Remind Yourself Why You Broke Up
You broke up for a reason. Seeing their seemingly happy relationship may seem like a slap in the face, but remember each reason that they weren’t right for you.
Let go of all the blame, anger, and resentment
Stumbling across a candid picture of your ex with someone new can suck – but it doesn’t mean you lost the unofficial post-break-up race of who can move on faster. Who needs that petty unnecessary pressure? Seeing them move on so quickly, or at least quicker than you, can cause you to call into question the validity of your own relationship. Don’t. People move on. It’s inevitable. What do you gain from retaining all the hurt and pain from your breakup?
Don’t Try To ‘Fill The Gap’
Resist the urge to find someone else purely because they have found someone themselves. Sex is great, and there’s no harm in having it casually as long as you’re both happy, consenting adults. But before hooking up with anyone new, think about your motives. Are you looking to have a good time? Awesome. Are you only doing it to mess with your ex? Maybe not so much.
Remember that moving on is not a competition, and no one is keeping score – plus, there’s another human being attached to those genitals you’re fumbling with, and you should always be considerate of their thoughts and feelings too.
Let Yourself Be Sad
Let yourself feel everything. There’s not much point suppressing your feelings – especially as there’s every chance they could emerge inadvertently in some other way. You can process a break up in whatever way works best for you. Curl up in your bed and cry for a few days. Eat a whole box of Cookie Dough ice cream. Cut up one of their t-shirts. Wholeheartedly embracing the pain and sadness will make moving on a lot easier in the longer run.
Stop Looking At Their Social Media Profile
Delete their number, and unfollow them on social media. This is not a petty thing to do if it helps you to move on. As much as you can, resist the urge to obsess over their relationship. Trawling through the internet for details is just causing your brain to be filled with useless information that will slowly drive you crazy.
Take Some Time Out For Yourself
Take some time out for yourself. Breakups happen for a reason, and even if both of you want to return to the relationship at some point, you can’t change what happened between either of you. All you can do now is focus on yourself, whether that’s distracting yourself with a new hobby or spending time alone.
Nothing is permanent. There is no trick to moving on. But always remember that dull ache that you feel when you see your ex happy with someone else will eventually fade. As much as it hurts, often seeing your ex with someone is the painful case of reality which you need to move on – and one day, seeing them with someone else won’t hurt so much.
Page last reviewed: 3 July 2020