How Long Does it Take to Get Over a Breakup?

Are you feeling the pain of a breakup right now? It’s tough. Even if you only dated for a short time, there is an intense feeling of loss that comes when a relationship ends.

The question is, how long is it okay to feel bad? Should you be worried if you still aren’t over your break-up weeks later?

Today, we are going to look at the grieving process that comes with breaking up to learn how long it takes to get over it. You may be surprised to learn therapists have even discovered a common timeline for healing after a breakup.

If you are trying to get over your last relationship, this article is for you!

woman eating out of a bucket of ice cream depressed and sad

Tips for Breaking Up with Your Partner

If you have come to that painful realization that the relationship isn’t working out, it is better to break up. Drawing out an inevitable split just causes you and your partner to suffer longer. You will waste time that could be spent healing and finding the right partner for you.

But, breaking up is hard. It can feel like a cruel thing to do to someone you care about. So, if you need some thorough advice on how to start the conversation, check out our guide to breaking up here.

Does The Length of a Relationship Correlate to The Length of Healing After a Breakup?

There hasn’t been nearly enough research into the healing process of breaking up, but from the data we have, a few things are clear.

  1. Healing from a breakup equates to healing from the grief of loss.
  2. Everyone handles grief differently.
  3. There is no timeline for healing that is set in stone.
  4. Recovery is very different between breaking up and divorce.

Recovering from a Breakup

Recovering from a breakup is tough and the grief comes in waves. Looking through polls and discussions around the internet, it seems that the majority of people dealing with a breakup feel better after 10 weeks.

Obviously, this varies from person to person, but even therapists recommend taking a few months to heal after a breakup.

During this time it isn’t recommended to jump into another relationship because it will be difficult to see new partners for who they really are.

Recovering from a Divorce

Recovering from a divorce or separation after a long-term partnership is far more devastating than a typical breakup. Many therapists state that the healing process afterward can take up to 18 months on average. 

This is because there is a lot more to unpack in a divorce. You can’t just walk away and never think about your ex again. There are court dates, papers to sign, discussion of assets, child support, alimony, and so much more. 

It can take months to even finalize the divorce and think about beginning the healing process. 

The long recovery and the overwhelming grief that comes with divorce are the reasons therapists recommend the use of counseling services. 

The Details of Your Relationship Can Change Everything

The rules around healing from a breakup aren’t set in stone. There are people who divorce and are over it in a day and people who grieve their break-ups longer than the relationship lasted. 

The details of your personality and your relationship greatly affect these numbers. 

For instance, if you are leaving a relationship that was riddled with codependence, emotional abuse, or manipulation, you will need longer to heal. These types of breakups may even require professional therapy to get over. 

Partnerships that resulted in children can make the healing process even harder. Parents tend to avoid properly grieving to save face in front of their kids. That results in them still feeling the pain of heartache years later. 

If you are struggling with a breakup, consider seeking a counselor or support group to help work through your loss.

Is it Okay to Get Back Together After a Breakup?

It’s a question that millions have asked and nobody has a perfect answer to the question; “should I get back with my ex?”

Here’s the deal; the majority of relationships that have an element of breaking up and getting back together are not sustainable. While studies show that churning relationships (on-again-off-again) do often result in marriages, the people in those relationships report being very unhappy. 

If you and your partner have core differences that cause you to break up once, getting back together won’t solve those problems. 

However; if the issues in the relationship are thoroughly addressed and overcome, getting back together may not be a big deal. For instance, studies show that couples who deal with infidelity are more successful at maintaining their relationship if they complete a couple’s therapy program. 

This implies that taking the time to work through the issues is the only way that getting back together after a breakup can truly work. 

What If I am Still Healing From My Breakup Years Later?

There is no true timeline to healing. Some people take a little longer to get over a breakup than others. Especially if there was a betrayal or breach of trust in the relationship. 

However, there is a time when a person has to consider that they need professional help in healing from their trauma. Here are some signs that it may be time to talk to a therapist about your struggles:

  • You feel compelled to keep tabs on your ex (digitally or in real life)
  • You get uncontrollable feelings of rage
  • You have panic attacks or feel too anxious to leave the house
  • You can’t spend time around other people
  • You feel intense jealousy when looking at other couples
  • You have had or are having thoughts about self-harm or suicide

If that sounds like you, a doctor can help you get back on track to healing from your breakup.