How to Recover from Relationship Withdrawal

The familiar cliché that “love is a drug” has a basis in physical reality. Romantic love produces dopamine which stimulates the mesolimbic reward system in the brain. People in love become dependent on their lovers much as addicts become addicted to drugs. When one person in a relationship decides to break-up with the other, the rejected partner goes through a period resembling withdrawal. They may suffer from depression, anxiety, sleeplessness, obsessive thoughts and cravings for the love they have lost. If you’ve recently been spurned, there are several things you can do to help ease the withdrawal symptoms and accelerate the recovery process.

Avoid Any Attempt at Contact

Once you have tied up loose ends in the relationship and recovered any of your possessions, cease all contact with your ex. Do not phone, text, email or drop by their house. People who have been rejected often go through a period of denial, even when their ex has left them for someone else. They convince themselves that if they say the right thing in a phone call or email, their lost love will come rushing back to them. In their desperation, they interpret a distantly polite, mildly annoyed response as a cause for hope. This only sets them up for further disappointments. The sooner you cut off channels of communication, the sooner you can begin to heal a broken heart.

Get Rid of Reminders

Gather together all the gifts given to you by your former lover and give them away to charity. Burn or shred any Valentines or love letters. Do not play albums or songs that you used to enjoy together. Avoid places you went together on dates. Surrounding yourself with bittersweet reminders of what you have lost will only prolong your agony. Letting go of love tokens will help you to convince yourself that the relationship is really over.