How to Survive a Marriage Breakup

by Shannon Philpott

The breakup of a marriage can spark a range of emotions. You may feel emotionally exhausted, angry, bitter, sad or resentful. These feelings can cause many to lose hope or give up on love. However, you can survive a marriage breakup with the help of loved ones, support groups and some self-serving TLC. Learn to give yourself some time to heal and grieve the loss of your relationship.

Recognize Your Feelings

Following the breakup of a marriage, it’s perfectly normal to feel confused, exhausted, frustrated, sad and angry, according to Jeanne Segal, Ph.D., Gina Kemp, M.A., and Melinda Smith, M.A., mental health experts at In fact, many of these feelings may be intense and cause anxiety about your future. Let the tears flow so you can work through these feelings. Allow yourself to experience a range of emotions and know that over time, the intensity of these feelings will lessen.

Take Care of Yourself

Many people have unrealistic expectations of themselves following the breakup of a marriage. Try not to be so hard on yourself. Accept that you may not be as productive or may not function at an optimal level while you are grieving the loss of your relationship, suggests Jeanne Segal, Ph.D., Gina Kemp, M.A., and Melinda Smith, M.A. of Instead of beating yourself up over what you cannot do, take care of yourself with some pampering and TLC. Join a fitness group and get your body moving. Treat yourself to a night on the town with friends or reserve time to relax both your mind and your body.

Give Yourself Time

When struggling with a major life change, many people are eager to move on quickly. Resist the urge to rush out and make a major purchase, move to a new area or jump into another relationship, says Los Angeles-based psychotherapist Barton Goldsmith, in a Psychology Today article. Rushing to move on too quickly can be a sign of avoidance. Give yourself some time to work out your feelings and cope with your marriage breakup.

Enlist Support

There is no doubt that this is a difficult time for you. It’s important that you find support from family members, friends, therapists or divorcees who understand and can empathize with what you are feeling, according to Goldsmith. Consider joining a community support group or faith-based group at your local church. While surviving a marriage breakup, avoid feeling as if you need to cope alone. Isolating yourself can make coping much more difficult, says Goldsmith. Increase your concentration, reduce your stress level and improve your overall health by reaching out for help.

About the Author

Shannon Philpott has been a writer since 1999. She has experience as a newspaper reporter, magazine writer and online copywriter. Philpott has published articles in St. Louis metro newspapers, "Woman's World" magazine, "CollegeBound Teen" magazine and on e-commerce websites, and also teaches college journalism and English. She holds a Master of Arts in English from Southern Illinois University.

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