So You Just Got Dumped Without Any Warning – Here's What To Do Next

Lately, things have been so good between you and your partner. The vibes are there, and you’re starting to feel that this relationship could become so much more. But suddenly, your phone vibrates, and their name pops up on screen. You swipe and unlock the message. Four little words pop up that make your heart sink. The text reads: “We need to talk.”

At first, the message takes you by surprise – but it can’t be anything bad, right? Maybe your SO wants to talk about your weekend plans and their wording is a bit dramatic. You try to smile, but you really can’t suppress the fluttering sensation in your stomach. You tell yourself to stop overreacting. You'll be fine!

“Sure! Should I call you?” You text back.

“Actually...” Your phone vibrates again and then the three dot bubble pops up. They're typing.

Another message comes in. Your world freezes. “I don’t think this is working out.”

The first thing that hits you is the shock, and then, the audacity of breaking up with you through a text message. You’re angry, confused, sad and annoyed. The blissful time you’ve spent together has gone down the drain. Skip ahead a few days, and then you’re sobbing over a half-eaten pint of Talenti and listening to the old breakup playlist you made in high school.

You really felt like you connected with your ex and are confused as to why they suddenly stopped feeling the same. How are you supposed to get closure and go on feeling totally content with life when you’ve been dumped out of the blue?

Breakups suck, regardless of how they go down. It can be over the phone, through text, in person, but the sting is still there. You’re definitely going to feel bad; it’s the end of a relationship that meant something to you! But know tour feelings are totally justified and valid, even if you were only dating for a few months. This person was supposed to be your person, and instead, you’ve got an empty pint of ice cream.

However, there are ways to deal with your feelings of being blindsided in a way that moves to closure.

Let’s talk about the breakup.

When the breakup is happening, you’re going to be caught off-guard, and you might get defensive. Though I completely understand the impulse of wanting to curse out your now ex-partner or tell them off, wouldn’t it be better to get some input from them? I don’t mean what you could be doing better. Instead, ask them why the relationship isn’t working out. Is it communication? Is the spark gone? Are you two just not as compatible as you thought?

Answers probably won’t make you feel better, but they might help you to not spiral out of control. If I were going through a spontaneous breakup, I would want to know why. If I didn’t know the reasoning behind the breakup, I would overthink the whole relationship to no end, and it would take up too much of my headspace.

I suggest that you be as respectful as possible, even while it's happening. You can feel angry, but you can also be the bigger person. Let your ex explain their situation and listen. Open yourself up and be receptive to what they are saying. Another thing you shouldn’t do is try to force anything from them. Why would you want to be with someone who doesn’t want to be with you? You’ll just end up hurting more.

Don’t text your ex, for obvious reasons.

After the initial separation process, you need to prioritize your space, both emotionally and physically. The split was such a shock to your system, and probably nothing makes sense right now. So, take the time to sort out your feelings independently.

Bombarding your ex with texts that keep the wound fresh will only make you feel worse – especially if they’re not responding to you. It’s natural to expect some sort of closure after being dumped, especially if you have questions about what caused them to leave you. Know that in time you might get answers – or you may not.

You have to learn to be okay with where you are right now, so keeping the lines of communication open with your ex may plunge you deeper in the dumps or keep you from moving on.

Breathe, and let yourself feel all of it.

You probably feel like your whole world is crumbling around you. This breakup might not have been a surprise for your ex, but for you, it really is. Let yourself sit with all the emotions that come with your first reaction. It’s alright to cry, and you definitely don’t want to suppress what you’re feeling. But on the same subject, don’t spiral out of control, and make sure you have a support system around to help with this.

“Take some deep breaths,” advises Audrey Lent, a senior at Cal Poly San Luis Obispo. “Being dumped unexpectedly is an overwhelming situation, and you need some time to collect yourself and come to an understanding about what has happened."

After you’ve managed to pick yourself up, it’s time to process the events of your breakup. Whatever level of commitment you were at with your SO, it’s important to reflect on why this particular breakup is hurting you. The reason underlying your heartbreak is important, because it helps you to understand where the feelings come from. Articulating what you feel, how you feel, and why you feel the way you do, will help you start acknowledging the acute points of your pain and moving on.

Related: Should You Stay Friends After the Relationship Ends? College Women Weigh In

Submerge yourself in what makes you feel good.

Breakups are usually accompanied by plenty of negative emotions, which means Wednesday Adams level of doom and gloom. I’m not saying that you should drown your feelings in food and Netflix, but I also strongly believe that self-care, in whatever form it takes for you, is a huge factor in mending a broken heart.

After going through a traumatic emotional experience, especially a breakup that might make you feel down on yourself, a nurturing way to recover is just by being kind to yourself and doing what you love. Invest your energy in something meaningful to keeps your thoughts from festering.

And if you get a call from your ex...

So, you’re in your zen space. You’re totally chill, and suddenly you get a call or text from your ex. Your peace of mind is shattered. There are two things you can do. If you’re over the breakup (and if the breakup was amicable and they aren't a toxic person!), then talk to your ex. Or you can chuck your phone out the window.

If you’re not ready to be friends or to talk with them, don’t answer. You can let them know you're not ready to reconnect. Just say: “I’m not ready to have a conversation with you.” You are allowed to voice and be honest about your feelings. If your ex continues to message you even after letting them know that you just don’t want to talk, go right ahead and press that block button.

Breakups are a healing process, but they’re never easy – especially if they happen with no warning. You may think things are going great when they suddenly come to a halt. But just breathe and give yourself some time to heal, I promise that soon you’ll think of this chapter in your life as a blessing in disguise.