“Pain makes you stronger. Fear makes you braver. Heartbreak makes you wiser.” ~Unknown
You wake up and check your phone expecting a “good morning” text, but there’s nothing there. Going through your day, everything feels quieter and there’s a gaping hole inside of you that nothing seems to fill. No matter what you do, you can’t seem to shake that relentless ache for the one person who consumes your mind.
It’s an emptiness that makes you feel lost and scared.
There’s nothing quite like a breakup to spark fears of being alone. It’s like a wave of dread that hits you once the breakup dust settles and you realize you no longer have a partner by your side. Anxiety hits and you start to wonder if you’ll ever find anyone to love you again.
It’s a fear that I became very familiar with while dating in my early twenties.
I was a late bloomer when it came to relationships. I never had a high school sweetheart, or even a college one for that matter, and spent half of my twenties in frustratingly casual relationships.
Those relationships would fizzle out almost as quickly as they began and, every time, I was left heartbroken, wondering if I’d be alone forever.
What made it worse is that I would see my friends in happy, committed relationships and doubt that I would ever have that for myself. Spending most of my life single felt like a curse.
Then, after countless short flings, I met someone who would eventually become my boyfriend. It was a moment I had been waiting for all those years, yet it wasn’t what I expected.
I thought being in a relationship would bring me happiness and peace, but once I had the serious, committed relationship I had been yearning for, I realized I was only masking my loneliness under a false sense of security. Because being with someone who was not right for me felt equally lonely.
So now that I’m single again after ending that five-year relationship, I have a new perspective on my feelings of loneliness and fear.
While I don’t have all of the answers and everyone has different ways of coping, here are some things that helped me overcome my fear of being alone after a breakup.
Lean on others for support.
A breakup can feel a lot like losing your balance. The person you once relied on for support has been pulled out from under you, and it can be difficult to find your footing.
Those feelings of loss only exacerbate the feelings of loneliness.
However, if you look around, you’ll most likely find that…