Making it work

‘I Don’t Love You’ Shouldn’t Mean It’s Over


The end of a relationship is always traumatic and can unhinge even the most stable people. I still remember the first time I heard those life changing words. I knew things hadn’t been great between us but I had hoped that we would limp through as we always did.  One evening I came from work and found him seated in the living room staring at a blacked out TV.  That should have been a warning sign. He cleared his voice and asked me to take the furthest seat. As soon as I sat down he dropped the bomb. He had met someone and wanted to move in with her immediately. I was tongue tied and when I forced my mouth open I threw up violently.  I developed a running stomach instantly and ran off to the toilet where I spent the whole night glued on the seat. Luckily the physical pain was too much for me to feel the emotions that usually go with breakups.

How you handle the initial declaration of ‘I don’t love you anymore’ will make a difference to whether you can salvage the relationship or you just let it die without trying. Here is a simple guide on how to react to the most shocking love declaration.

Don’t. . .

Talk about love

It is admirable that you still love someone who hasn’t loved you in a long while. As great as this is for you, bringing it up at this moment will make you look at best pathetic and at worst desperate.

Beg for a second chance

I was lucky that when I opened my mouth, all that came out was vomit. Otherwise I would have begged and groveled for a second chance. This lack of pride makes you look unattractive and strengthens your partner’s belief that you are not worth their time.

Go for a quick fix

Don’t run off to a bar to drown your sorrows in alcohol.  Getting stupid drunk will instead force you to do things that will make you hate yourself even more.

Blame your partner

While the biggest problems might have been caused by your partner, you also contributed to the mess. Placing the blame entirely on the person makes you helpless to make any changes and puts the power squarely in your partner’s hands.

Do. . .

Show empathy

Phrases like ‘I can see you are unhappy’ and ‘tell me more’ show that you acknowledge your partner’s  decision and are willing to listen to them without judgment.

Believe every word they say

It doesn’t mind how ridiculous the claims are just believe that whatever word comes out of your partner’s mouth is absolutely true because they do.

Be kind to yourself

This is the time to think about you and treat yourself with kindness. Eat well, sleep enough, nourish and pamper your body and soul.

Make a plan

Unless you find out what you did wrong and make changes, you are going to keep getting heartbroken. Start a recovery diary detailing your thoughts and emotions. This will help you make SMART (Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Realistic, and Timed) changes.

Get help

Emotional upheavals can leave lasting mental and physical damage. However strong you are, you will need support to survive with all your marbles intact. Get a friend in whom to confide or join counseling. Read and research extensively about the subject to you equip yourself with the knowledge necessary for your survival.