The holidays can dredge up a lot of feelings. Sure, it’s all Christmas cookies and Chanukah gelt, but with all those holiday songs about lost loves, Aunt Denise asking you if you’re still single, and couples posting ice skating Instagrams, it can also be a really lonely time.
Most everybody comes home for the holidays, even your ex. It can feel especially sting-y to think about, or even worse–to see. People get drunk on eggnog and send regrettable 2.am. texts. Luckily, you’re not alone. Unfortunately (and fortunately) heartbreak is the most common thing, like ever. That’s why we talked to women about having broken hearts.
Some told us stories, some gave advice, some even shared their fears. We would like to think that this would make anyone with a broken heart or anyone “going through it” feel like someone can relate. Somebody has been there or is where you are right now. You’re not alone.
Think of this as your team Lately sleepover. It’s that weird part of the night right before everyone falls asleep and you’re all talking about deep stuff. There are still bowls of Chex Mix and M&M’s on the table. Your dad has come downstairs and said “SHHHHHH” three different times. There will be pancakes and french toast in the morning. But for now you’re talking about what it’s like to have a broken heart.
“It took almost two years for me to stop being angry. It took me less time to come to terms with the fact that we wouldn’t ever get back together. None of that mattered because I was hurt and alone and he had someone who loved him and who he loved too and why does he get to feel that way again? Why don’t I have that? Sometimes I feel silly that my only meaningful romantic relationship was in high school.
As an adult it’s hard to justify that what I was feeling at 16, 17, 18 was real. Sometimes I don’t care, and I know that I’m lucky to have experienced love when I did. At 25, I am happy for him. My hurt has healed. I’m still alone but it doesn’t feel as lonely. I’m just scared I’ve already had my one great love.”
“Heartbreak is a necessary evil. We need it in order to love, live, make art, and subtweet. Heartbreak allows you to uncover and decipher Dorothy Parker’s rhyming couplets, ruminate and relate to Billlie Holiday’s recording of “Good Morning Heartache” (on repeat, of course), and eat a bag of Skinny Pop popcorn for each meal. Kidding, kidding, you can always eat a bag of Skinny Pop — it also works as a celebratory meal.”
“Girls, I’ve never been heartbroken. I had one boyfriend for 2 weeks in high school, but other than that I’ve never dealt with anything like this. I was completely shattered. In my mind I had this, admittedly not rational, fantasy that I could have a husband and a girlfriend, and I was on cloud nine. I was in love with two people and it was going to work out. But it didn’t. I went in to a very deep depression that I can only summarize as pure heartache induced. I was dumb as fuck, y’all. We didn’t talk for 2 straight months.
We only occasionally talk now, and we’re chummy, sure, but it will never be the same. I feel like my heart was divided in three even parts, and the part that had her name on it will always have her name on it, but the candle was blown out by a tornado of emotion. I won’t say I feel like I lost my other half, but I won’t not say that I feel like I lost my other half. I will always be in love with her, I think. And on the off chance that she ever reads this and knows it’s about her, I hope she knows that.”
“It’s not that I felt relief ending things with my last relationship– if you can call it that. I don’t know if going over to someone’s house a few days a week to watch Westworld, eat pasta, and hookup is a relationship–but it was something. We had a routine, he met my friends. I went to a couple of his shows. We talked about being exclusive once and I got scared and ended the conversation. I couldn’t confide in him. But it felt like a loss. I still can’t drive past this one part of the 134 without getting teary, or listen to certain songs, or talk to him at all.”
“You know what’s heartbreaking? Being in love with someone you can’t trust. In between hot flashes of having the best time ever and being beside yourself with grief over every new betrayal that comes light, you have these moments of complete clarity where you’re like ‘what the fuck am I doing??’ But you can’t get yourself out of there. You don’t want to. You’re too sick and he’s too strong. It’s comfortable and you love him, so you stay.”
“Here’s what heartbreak feels like for me. Three years out, I’m still waiting for you to realize that you miss me. At this point, I don’t think you will. I don’t miss you, and you’re the one that dumped me, so it makes sense that you’ve totally moved on a few times over. But it still just doesn’t make sense to me that you don’t miss me at all. It makes me feel like my part of your life was insignificant — and that just can’t be right after we spent seven years together.
When we broke up, though, I found at least one other person for every inside joke or reference that we had. That way, when I see something that reminds me of you, I still have someone that I can share it with. Because if you don’t miss me, I don’t want to open any lines of communication again. But it sure would be nice to know that you miss me. Just so that I could know that it all mattered to you. It mattered to me.”
“What’s secretly awesome about heartbreak is the way you get to get over it. You have an excuse to act insane, cut off all your hair, dye it a different color, stay out late, eat like crap, do whatever you want all because you have a broken heart. Your friends can’t judge you because you’re crying in the middle of dinner. You can be a hoe. You get to be the person you weren’t when you were dating someone.“