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Psychological Reasons Why Sometimes It’s Difficult To Heal After A Breakup

Breakups are unpleasant, emotionally draining and a risk factor for depression. According to a study, stressful life events such as the breakup of a romantic relationship with your partner can lead to a depression-like state in individuals, without any history of psychiatric disorders. [1]

Some people take less time to heal after a breakup or quickly learn how to deal with their post-breakup stress. However, some individuals find it difficult to heal even after months or years.

According to psychology, this is why it's difficult for some to heal after a breakup.

1. Decline in life satisfaction

Life satisfaction is more about having a positive attitude toward one's life. It is usually calculated in connection to a variety of factors like financial status, level of education, place of living, professional experience, and a satisfactory emotional relationship. According to a study, relationship break up, especially in unmarried relationships, can cause a decline in life satisfaction and increase psychological distress, making it difficult to heal after a breakup. [2]

2. Cuts our social networks

After a breakup, people usually prefer to stay alone as it helps them process the loss, to mourn or to use it positively to heal and embrace their new individuality. However, some people in the process, get used to living alone and lose their social networks. Social isolation tends to lower the quality of life and increase the risk of all-cause mortality, along with triggering chronic diseases like depression. This makes healing difficult. [3]

3. Loss of emotional support

Partners in a healthy relationship often help support each other emotionally. When there's a breakup in a relationship, people tend to enter a challenging phase in their lives due to the unavailability of their partner to support them, who was once the primary source of comfort, love and security. This makes them vulnerable to acute emotional stress, causing symptoms like chest pain, loss of consciousness, shortness of breath and vomiting. Though there may be other people to support them emotionally, they find it difficult to break out of the habit of seeking their ex-partner's emotional support. [4]

4. Reinforcement of childhood emotions

Sometimes, when a person has avoidant parents or superficial attachment with their parents, they develop a defense mechanism to protect their fragile sense of self and, in the process, often develop arrogant behaviours and tend to have the same type of relationship (superficial) with others. Though they are not much invested in a relation, a breakup does affect them in certain ways and evokes in them childhood traumas related to abandonment by parents, making it difficult to heal.

5. Challenge to identity

Your self-perception often changes in a relationship. Transitioning from being a lone person to someone who is actively making plans for a life with someone else is an important life change. Being in a relationship allows us to share a part of our life with someone, such as experiencing new things together, developing similar hobbies, inside jokes and similar opinions about people. Breakups can end this new identity of yours and can even make you start hating activities or hobbies that you have liked before.

To Conclude

Relationships are never simple; people heal and move on even though the experience is difficult and painful. Breakups give us time to discover new things about ourselves, go through significant personal growth, and give us a deeper understanding of the kind of relationship we really want. So, when you break up with a partner, understand it's not the end of your life. Seek professional help if you find it difficult to cope with your breakup.

Read more about: breakup depression trauma
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