Holiday Break-Ups – The Man’s Survival Guide

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Great, the break-up sucks in and of itself. The extra kick in the nuts is that it is during the holidays. Holidays are times where people (even men) are usually more emotionally engaged. This is not welcome at a time where a guy is already emotionally and psychologically beat up. The media and society put forth the image that everyone else is having a good time and enjoying the season. This then makes your current situation seem all the more painful in comparison. It is normal to miss an ex-girlfriend and feel a void by not having a partner during this time. But there are tools to cope with it. Check em out.

Why during the holidays?

You may have heard about a somewhat recent study providing evidence that there is a huge spike in break-ups during the holidays. Why is that? Well there are a variety of possible reasons.

Festive gatherings are a staple of the holiday season. Some women have a fear of bringing their partner around family, friends, and co-workers. The option that they choose is to break-up instead of face that situation.

Financial reasons? Yes it’s true. Some women break-up before a holiday in order to avoid having to spend money on a gift and/or a trip to see a significant other.

Fear of sharing the holidays and moving into deeper waters. Some women are not ready to take a stand on moving forward with the relationship so instead they choose to jump ship. Holidays with a partner inherently infer a statement of furthered commitment. It can be awkward if a girl is not “there” yet and she is asked to make that symbolic statement. If in fact her feelings are decreasing, then the urge to break-up may be intensified.

Holidays cause reflection. Women re-asses themselves, their situation in life, their finances, their goals, and their partners. Depending on her conclusions and influences, she may decide on a break-up.

Some women just want to relieve the stress of a pending break-up before the holiday so she can get it over with and not have it hanging it over her head.

Holidays are linked to stress. Every relationship has problems, and the additional stress of the holidays may be that straw that breaks the camel’s back and causes a break-up.

Related to the reason above, the holidays commonly create conflicting demands between work, school, and families that may serve to set the stage for a break-up.

One HUGE reason stems from unrealistic expectations by women. There is nothing that you can do to meet the expectations created by the fictitious “happily ever after” of Christmas & New Year or the B.S. romanticism of Valentines Day. So inevitably when life is not like the movies, the woman blames you and it is all your fault. This ridiculous perspective can cause a girl to overreact and break-up with her boyfriend.
Tips to survive a holiday break-up

So clearly there are a whole bunch of reasons for holiday break-ups. To counter the distress of this situation, there are a number of things to keep in mind. Understanding these perspectives and employing these strategies can save you a whole lot of grief.

With all of the drama and stress that the holidays bring, there is an upside. There is a whole lot to do to keep you busy. It is hard to not run into a holiday party… even a one sponsored by your employer or school. It doesn’t matter if people are going to ask about your ex-girlfriend when you get there, at least there are other immediate environmental distractions that can keep your mind off of that topic (we will discuss tricks for this scenario below). And let’s be honest. It ain’t like you won’t be thinking of her when you are home alone, so fearing talking about her is no excuse to miss the party. Take advantage of the distractions presented during the holidays.

Not enough holiday parties to crash? Then create some distractions of your own. It is easy to impose on people during the holidays. Make up reasons. Go out for drinks for the holiday. Is there a football game on that day? Catch it with friends. Invite folks over to kick it to celebrate the season. You have a lot to work with.

Earlier I acknowledged that people may ask about your ex girlfriend when you are out and about. I also advised that this is no excuse to avoid social events. I also advise that you prepare answers ahead of time so that when nosey people ask questions, you will know just what to say. Rehearse the explanations out loud beforehand into the mirror and in the car while driving on the way there. Then consciously do not think about your ex-girlfriend and enjoy the event. When asked you can say a number of things: “Actually things did not work out with NAME, so I am starting the new year on the prowl… as 2012′s most eligible bachelor.” Or simply say, “oh, me and NAME have gone separate ways.” Or maybe, “Oh, that ran its course. I’m single again. Got any hot friends?” whatever suits you. What you do not want to do is look like a sad puppy and get into a conversation about it. If pressed, you can say “c’mon, this ain’t the time and place for that conversation. Instead why not explain why Jeff is wearing your mother’s sweater… [point out environmental observation conversation starter].”

What if an ex-girlfriend breaks up with you on the actual holiday? Yes, that friggin sucks. You may be concerned that the mental scar will ruin the holiday from here on out for the rest of your life. That is not true. You had holidays before her. You will have many more after her. Your untainted holiday memories will bury this one horrible experience. Next year you should reflect on the positive holiday experiences. This year you should get busy creating new memories as described above.

Maybe you are the type of guy who believes that the best way to get over a girl is to get on top of a new ones. If that is the case, then the holiday break-up statistic has a flipside with a silver lining. If there are more break-ups during the holidays, then that means that there are more new fish in the sea who may relate to where you are coming from. Thus more new prospects for you if you want to hurry up and get back into the game. Just don’t get caught up with a girl who is a head case about her own break up. You have enough going on. You do not need her baggage as well.

Money is not the cure to all problems. And I strongly disagree with going into debt to deal with stress. But I do understand the value of retail therapy when used sparingly and reasonably. Relationships during the holidays are expensive. Now you do not have that financial burden, so go buy yourself a gift with the money you are saving by not being in a relationship. Do not blow the money but instead get something that you have been wanting for a while. Here is your excuse. The money was going to be spent on a gift anyways. Now the recipient just happens to be someone more deserving. You.

Different people work in different ways so I will mention the following method also. Having someone break up with you before the holidays #%^ing sucks. It is rather easy to use that fact to fuel anger to overcome the hurt (if that is the strategy you choose). What type of wench breaks up with a guy during a holiday? You are better off being rid of that scum. NOTE: Just remember it is not all women. It is this woman. Also remember to tread lightly when diving into negativity. It is an available tool when the hurt is just too much and you need anything… anything to get you through. However, sustained anger is not the solution. It is just a Band-Aid. And an occasionally helpful one at that. The final caveat is do NOT act in anger if you use this technique. The purpose is to shield you from pain, not cause pain onto anyone else.

Sometimes some good old fashioned family support is just what the doctor ordered. Many men spend time with their families during the holidays. It can be a brother, parents, cousins, whatever. Family bonds can do wonders to fill the void after a break-up.

Next is a coping tactic that is more popular than one might initially expect. Even though it may seem that you do not have anything left in you, you can still give. And it may feel good. There are many worthy causes out there that could use your help. Volunteer at a homeless shelter, a non-profit that helps kids, Habitat for Humanity, veterans association, assist the elderly, you name it. Giving to those in need is rewarding in and of itself and can also help to push the pain of a break-up to the background a little bit.
When it comes down to it, a break-up during the holidays is just a breed of break-up. Some unique characteristics may be present, but basically the standard rules apply. The above philosophies and strategies are effective whether it is the holiday season or not. But to be effective they must be employed. The sooner a man begins taking action, the sooner he recovers. The time to start is now.