But at the same time, we have a tendency to hold to that pain like a squirrel hoarding anger nuts for winter.Holding on to the frustration, the hurt, even the vague hope that you can get back together…Because quite frankly, the anger and the bitterness that comes from a break-up? All it’s doing is burning a pit in your gut and making you take time away from your recovery period when you could be doing more productive things like actually working on your life instead of plotting elaborate revenge fantasies.I’m not saying you have to pretend that it doesn’t hurt or that you’re not angry and upset, far from it.You’re simply too close to the pain; no matter how much you may convince yourself that you’re behaving perfectly rationally and maturely, you’re are too; it’s damn near impossible to move on when somebody keeps insisting on dredging up the past and inflicting it on the present.Just as important as distance is to the healing process, it’s also a critical part of salvaging a friendship – or at least a non-awkward relationship – out of the ruins of your breakup.Taking some enforced time away allows your relationship to change into what it will become in the future instead of being mired in the past.It’s the Heisenberg’s Uncertainty Principle of relationships.
Being able to have any sort of successful relationship with your ex means that you need to have processed your breakup and taken ownership of your part in it…Someone who has nothing but “crazy psycho bitches” in his past is telling his future partners that either his picker is profoundly broken or he’s very bad at relationships.Someone who keeps getting his heart broken by remorseless harpies over and over again is likewise someone who is bitter and needs to spend some time examining his attachment patterns and why he keeps making the same mistake over and over again.Which means that there are going to be all those awkward “accidental” encounters at the places you used to frequent together, the painful “oh shit, who is she talking to?” moments at parties and other occasions when your ex seemingly conspires with the universe to remind you of her existence. But just because the two of you broke up doesn’t automatically mean that everything is going to be awkward and painful between the two of you forever.
People are often surprised when I tell them that I’m friends with a large number of my exes.