I Can't Move On After the Breakup
Ask Demetria: It's important to take the necessary steps to heal your broken heart.
I'm at the point of desperation just trying to jolt myself into moving on after my last relationship. I have to get my head into some place other than in his space. I've given myself time to get over him and I just can't. I've been giving my number to whoever asks and I'm on every dating site. I don't know what else to do. Any advice? --L.C.
Stop dating immediately. Once upon a time, some bad adviser told women, "The best way to get over one man is to get another man." It's disastrous advice that's been screwing up relationships ever since. You won't get over your ex by dating someone new. You will just distract yourself from dealing with the pain and loneliness of your current breakup. As tempting as that might sound right now, understand that you're setting yourself up for a cycle of drama and disappointment.
You've described yourself as being at the "point of desperation" and handing out your number like it's a flyer for a new club or frantically trolling the dating sites. I imagine you're looking for the type of man who shows up in Tyler Perry movies to save emotionally troubled black women from themselves -- Idris Elba in Daddy's Little Girls, Rick Fox in Meet the Browns, Adam Rodriguez in I Can Do Bad All by Myself, etc. That's the kind of guy my friend Lauryn was looking for the same day she ended things with her then-boyfriend of four years. The new guy was a family friend who'd always has a crush on her, and he, by her account, was "the nicest, sweetest guy ever! He was right there when I needed him," she says. "We didn't part for three months."
But when they did? The first time she was left to her own devices with no distractions, she had a meltdown in the shower. The grieving period she'd been trying to avoid all those months caught up with her. And she had a new problem now, too: She was in a relationship with a guy she didn't really want to be with. "I got what I needed from him and it was time to go. He felt as though the rug was taken from underneath him," Lauryn recalls. "I would never do something like that again as I know it was painful for him, and I wasn't honest with him or myself about how I really hadn't gotten over my ex."