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This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at BU chapter.

Breakups are the worst. Whether you’re going through your first one or have been through it several times, it always hurts the same.

Unfortunately, it’s something that most of us will experience within our lifetimes. Nothing can prepare you for your first breakup, but there are some pieces of advice I wish I had known before I experienced my first heartbreak.

Healing is not linear

The first few days after my breakup, I was a complete mess.

I had no will to do anything. I lost my appetite, I lost interest in all of my hobbies, and I shut myself away from everybody.

Plain and simply put, I was depressed.

Once I got back into my regular routine, I started healing. I reinvolved myself in my schoolwork, clubs, and social life.

But I would be lying if I said I don’t still think about him or our relationship. I will see something that reminds me of him or do something we used to do together, and it’s like I’m transported back to the night we broke up. But all of that is normal.

Healing is a rollercoaster full of ups and downs. Eventually, you can step off that ride and leave it as a changed person.

People heal at different paces

About three days after my breakup, I asked all my friends who went through the same thing, “How long did it take you to get over them?”

While I knew that not everyone was going to say the same thing, I had a false hope that they would all tell me they got over it quickly. I wanted assurance that I wouldn’t feel like this for months.

In truth, it depends entirely on your individual situation. It took some of my friends a few weeks to get over their breakup, while others took months.

It’s a scary thought to think you could be feeling so down for such a long time, but a breakup at its core is grief. You are grieving the loss of a relationship and a period of your life.

It’s not easy to process grief, and although it’s an uncomfortable emotion, you have to give yourself time to go through all of its stages.

Let yourself feel

The most important thing to remember when going through a breakup is that your emotions are valid.

Your friends and family don’t expect you to conceal how you feel. They want to be there for you. Call your friends and cry it out. Hug someone you’re close to and tell them how you feel.

One of the things I did that I swear by was making a locked note on my phone. I wrote down every emotion I felt towards him, everything I wanted to text him but couldn’t. I wrote it all down in my Notes app. Now I can reflect on it and see what I felt and still feel.

No matter how you choose to go about it, it’s essential that you get all of your feelings out. If you bottle them all up, healing will be much more difficult.

No contact is the only way to go

I understand. Your ex was your best friend. How do you lose your significant other AND your best friend all at once?

As unfortunate as it is, you have to.

If you try to maintain a friendship right after the breakup, you will never get over it. You need the space away from them to heal yourself and move past them.

At the end of the day, you broke up for a reason. As tempting as it is to maintain the friendship aspect of the relationship, that will lead you to continue thinking about the romantic relationship and wonder why you can’t have it anymore.

Distance from this person will be brutal initially, but you will grow accustomed to it.

Tuck away all tangible memories

It’s impossible to heal with constant reminders of the person everywhere.

I know it’s hard to let go, but you don’t have to completely, at least not yet.

After my breakup, I first put all of his stuff that I had in a box and put it under my bed. I could not look at it without feeling overwhelmed with emotions.

The pictures on my phone took a while for me to let go of. I didn’t want to delete them because I was hoping that we might get back together. So I kept them, and every night, I would go back and look at all of the photos and remember all the best parts of our relationship while conveniently neglecting the parts that caused our breakup.

Ultimately, I moved all our pictures to a hidden album on my phone. The photos are memories that I’m not ready to let go of, but I don’t need to look at them constantly. 

If you’re going through a breakup and feel hopeless about recovery, I hope these tips lift your spirits and guide your healing process in some way, shape, or form.

You’re going to get through this!

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My name is Sophia and I'm a sophomore studying advertising at Boston University. I'm originally from Cleveland, Ohio, but I love the city of Boston! I'm on the marketing and PR team at the Boston University Her Campus chapter. My favorite pieces to write cover topics such as entertainment and profiles. At Boston University, I am also involved in AdClub, where I'm a copywriter, and the International Peer Mentor Program, where I mentor incoming international freshmen. I'm very passionate about getting involved in activities on and off campus! My passions in life include from music, reading, sports, and movies. I read at least 100 pages of a book everyday; you will never see me without a book in my bag. I also am an avid Letterboxd user; there's nothing better than reviewing a movie after I finish it! Additionally, music is a huge part of my life. I'm constantly listening to new music and I love going to concerts. If I'm not doing any of these things, I'm probably watching a Cleveland sports game.