5 Stages of Grieving a Breakup | Relationship

Stages of Grieving a Breakup

Stages of Grieving a Breakup: When a special relationship ends, it can be an overwhelming experience that rocks us to our core. The emotional impact of relationship loss cannot be understated. It cuts deep, leaving us with a profound sense of emptiness and depression. You can learn how to cope with depression after breakup.

The void left behind can feel insurmountable, as if a part of our being has been ripped away. The pain may manifest as an ache in our hearts, heaviness in our chests, or an indescribable emptiness that permeates our entire being. Acknowledging and honoring the emotional weight of losing a relationship is crucial.

Grief is a natural response to loss, and the end of a meaningful relationship is no exception. Recognizing and allowing ourselves to grieve is essential, as suppressing or denying our emotions can hinder healing. Grief is a complex and multifaceted experience that encompasses a range of emotions, including sadness, anger, confusion, and even relief. 

Each person’s grief journey is unique, and it is essential to give ourselves permission to feel and express our emotions in a way that feels authentic and healing.

In this post, we will go into the various stages of grieving a relationship and provide helpful insights, practical recommendations, and answers to frequently asked concerns to assist you through this painful path.

What exactly is Breakup Grief?

A breakup, sadness, and loss might emerge after a romantic relationship’s termination. It will be unique to each individual. 

The pain you feel after a split, separation, or divorce will be more substantial regarding your impression of closeness/intimacy with your partner. 

Other circumstances, including the length of the relationship and whether relatives or friends stigmatized your connection, may exacerbate your sadness.

It is crucial to understand that not everyone experiences grief after a breakup. Following a breakup, some people may experience relief, decreased worry, and more fantastic emotions of independence than mourning.

Alternatively, it is common for some people to have a more complicated reaction involving relief and grief over the separation. If you are grieving after a breakup, you may suffer emotional, bodily, and cognitive reactions. When you are grieving over a breakup, you can have swings in mood, low self-esteem, or feel rejected.

Physical manifestations of grief include:

  • Numbness or emptiness
  • Trembling
  • Nausea
  • Breathing problems
  • Insomnia
  • Appetite loss
  • Weight reduction

Read Also: How to Cope with Depression After Breakup

Is There a Grief Stage After a Breakup?

Despite the numerous websites and books that claim there are five (or even seven) stages of grief, the most well-known of which are: denial, anger, bargaining, depression, and acceptance,

If your experience differs from these hypothesized stages, misinformation about mourning can create harm, unnecessary anguish, and even a lack of support from others.

This pain is typical since some people experience these mourning “stages” intermittently or repeat them even after moving past acceptance. 

Dr. Elisabeth Kubler-Ross is credited with suggesting the five phases of mourning for persons diagnosed with a terminal disease.

While her work has been credited with bringing the experiences of those dying to light, the notion that people must go through five distinct stages of mourning after any loss is no longer universally acknowledged. 

How Therapy Can Assist in Breakup Grief

Some people will seek a therapist for help immediately following a breakup, but others may opt to deal with the breakup independently. 

If you haven’t seen any change in your mourning symptoms after six months, it’s time to contact a therapist, especially one who specializes in grief therapy and relationships. 

Finding a therapist should be simple, with many therapists experienced with your situation available in an online therapist directory.

Therapy can help with breakup sadness by offering a secure and compassionate environment in which to:

  • Investigate, disentangle, express, and affirm your feelings about the breakup.
  • Find and use appropriate coping methods and social supports.
  • Consider what the relationship taught you about yourself and what you want and do not want in a future relationship and partner.
  • Recognize relationship red flags and discover how to create trust in a healthy relationship.

What are the Options for Breakup Therapy?

Among the counseling alternatives for breakup sadness are:

Individual Psychiatry

This is one-on-one psychotherapy with a counselor to discuss the breakup and how it has affected you positively or adversely. It can help you understand yourself and the relationship that has ended, comfort that your grief reactions are expected, and help you cope and move on.

Counseling for Loss

Sorrow counseling is therapy with a counselor specializing in sorrow to support you through your breakup and loss. 

If you haven’t experienced an improvement in your grief reactions or are having difficulty functioning in one or more areas of your life, this therapy may be beneficial. If these symptoms persist six months or longer after the breakup, you may be suffering from complicated grief.

Group Counseling

A therapist and up to 8-10 other people who have gone through a breakup will be present. While the therapist facilitates the session, group participants can support and learn from one another.

Online counseling

Therapists can also efficiently provide individual therapy, bereavement counseling, or group therapy via online therapy using a secure video platform. 

Because you can access it from home or any private location, this format provides additional flexibility. 

Online therapy can save time because there is no travel time. It also increases the number of therapists accessible to work with you because it allows you to work with any practicing therapist licensed in your state. Note these therapies can help you fix a broken marriage as well.

What are the Stages of Grieving a Breakup | Stages of Grief Relationship?

Going through the breakup of a relationship may be challenging and emotional. It’s a time of conflicting emotions, perplexity, and emotional ups and downs. 

The phases of grieving a relationship are similar to the stages of grief experienced after the death of a loved one. 

The phases of grieving a relationship include a variety of emotional experiences that people may have during the healing process. 

While everyone’s path is different, these stages might help you comprehend and cope with the emotional storm you’re going through.

First Stage: Shock and Denial

In the stages of Grieving a Breakup, the first stage is Denial. Accepting the truth of the split can be difficult, and you may find yourself clinging to the possibility of reconciliation. It’s usual to feel denial, numbness, and emotional detachment during this time.

Second Stage: Anger

Among the stages of grieving a Breakup is Anger. As the shock wears off, it is normal to feel a surge of rage and hatred against your ex-partner. You may be plagued with resentment and injustice, wondering why the relationship had to stop. It’s critical to allow yourself to feel these feelings and find healthy outlets.

Third Stage: Bargaining

You may find yourself bargaining or negotiating with your ex-partner during this period to save the relationship. Thoughts such as “What if we had done things differently?” or “Maybe if I change, they will come back” may enter your head. 

While it is natural to desire to find a solution, it is critical to understand that this period is a necessary part of the healing process.

When the bargaining attempts prove futile, individuals may experience deep sadness and depression. They may feel a profound loss, experience changes in appetite or sleep patterns, withdraw from social activities and have difficulty finding pleasure in things they once enjoyed. Feelings of loneliness, emptiness, and hopelessness characterize this stage.


Fourth Stage: Sadness and Depression

Depression and melancholy are frequent during the stages of relationship grief. At times, feelings of loss, loneliness, and emptiness can be overwhelming. 

Allow yourself to grieve and seek assistance from friends, family, or experts who can lend a listening ear and offer guidance during this difficult time.

Fifth Stage: Acceptance and Progress

Acceptance is the final on the stages of grief relationship. It entails accepting the termination of the relationship and accepting that life must move on. 

During this stage, you may have a renewed feeling of hope, personal progress, and the ability to picture a future without your ex-partner.

As time passes, individuals come to terms with the reality of the relationship’s end. They start accepting the loss and adjusting to the new circumstances. While they may still feel moments of sadness and longing, they gain a sense of closure and begin to rebuild their lives.

As time passes, individuals come to terms with the reality of the relationship’s end. They start accepting the loss and adjusting to the new circumstances. While they may still feel moments of sadness and longing, they gain a sense of closure and begin to rebuild their lives.

How Long Does It Take To Get Over A Breakup:

When grieving after a breakup, a person can feel the loss until they decide to get up and travel the path of recovery. Furthermore, once individuals find solace in a companion, their hearts gradually heal, and the breakup mourning period passes. 

If you’ve recently ended a relationship, you’re in a period of mourning. Having said that, the sadness of someone who divorced a year ago is not any less intense.

The grieving period may be shorter if someone has recently ended a toxic relationship. All the stored resentment and hatred tends to spill forth during the breakup moments, and one feels relieved when the relationship ends.

When a breakup occurs due to the loss of a loved one, the grief comes and goes depending on the individual’s situation. While most people mourn for 6 months to a year or two after death, the period can last longer if the mind finds it difficult to reconcile with the shock of loss at the death itself.

Different Stages of Grief Breakup for Guys

Here are the stages of grievance breakup for Men:

The Ego Reawakens

Men have enormous egos, typically restrained in relationships, especially when one partner is domineering. It’s their way of preventing the ego from overpowering the relationship, but once it is over, it conceals everything.

To most people, men going through a breakup may appear perfectly content and loving every minute of life, but they’re typically profoundly broken inside. Therefore, the ego stage is necessary and significant, and it aids a man in discreetly retreating into his shell to move past the breakup. This is one of the stages of grief breakup for guys.

The Social Animalization of Man

Men initially do not internalize the trauma as women do. They attempt to live as if nothing happened by letting it seep in, brushing it off, or sweeping it under the rug. And that can be demoralizing for the lady they are dating. They’re not attempting to forget their sorrow or act like they’re over it; instead, they’re just trying to regain their egos and socialize as much as they can.

Slowly, the realization sets in

According to a study by the University of Texas, the fundamental understanding of a breakup is that you are genuinely alone. Once a man going through a breakup realizes this, he starts acting in ways that fundamentally modify and transform his mind. He starts looking for joy once more. But for that to occur, it’s critical to understand that he is emotionally fragile and alone.

Angry and Sad

A feeling of anger is among the stages of grief breakup for guys. Everything is being questioned now that stage 3 is over, and some realization has occurred. Everything is questioned, including the root of the breakup and what caused it, which can bring intense rage and despair because you’re facing a problem you’ve probably been avoiding for far too long. 

Initial Acceptance

This is a declaration that you finally recognize the relationship is ended and that you have nothing to gain from the other party. The realization that it’s over comes to you much later, in the latter stages, even though you may have tried to get in touch with her, met her, or even had a sexual encounter with her. 

Gaining the Trust and Refocusing Hope

You can regain all your lost trust in yourself and other people at this point. It assists you in conducting a new analysis of your needs and wants as you strive to navigate the competitive landscape. Gaining the confidence to start over again takes time. Therefore, this stage is crucial. Therefore, it’s crucial to exercise patience throughout this period.

Prepared to Leap Once More

This stage may follow the initial stage in months or even years. This is the stage of total completion, and it aids in determining when you’re prepared to start dating someone new. 

Unless they find what they’re looking for, some guys prefer being alone, while others prefer being with another woman. Whatever it is, this stage removes all inhibitions and anything else preventing you from moving past the breakup. 

Read Also: 13 Killer Signs of Disrespectful Behavior in Marriage that Breaks a Home Faster


Going through a breakup is never easy. The stages of grieving can be overwhelming and confusing, but it’s important to remember that healing takes time. It’s okay to feel a range of emotions and to seek support from friends or a mental health professional.

Remember to take care of yourself during this difficult time and try to find healthy ways to cope with your feelings. Lastly, know that you will overcome this and become more assertive on the other side.

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