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My partner and I just broke up, and I’m just really sad. What can I do?

It’s tough when a relationship ends, whether or not you are the person who ended it. And it’s even harder when you didn’t want it to end or it was unexpected. Sometimes relationships end even if strong feelings exist between two people. A couple might discover they have different values or needs in their lives that just don’t fit with the relationship anymore. Sometimes, like when one partner goes to college, couples have to live far apart, and the relationship can’t survive the distance or the differences between high school and college. Other times, two people have differences that make the relationship unhealthy for one or both. And sometimes, the connection and feelings fade.

Give yourself time to grieve and feel whatever emotions come with the change in your life. It’s hard to say how much time you’ll need before you feel better. Some people need a long time, while others bounce back pretty quickly. While it may not seem like it now, the feelings will become less intense with time.

For now, take care of yourself. Spend time with family and friends; talk to people who you know care about you. It can be helpful to find new things to do, like clubs, sports or other activities where you can meet new people and take your mind off of the change in your life. Being with friends and exploring new interests can help you focus on you and what’s important to you. You can use this experience to make decisions about a possible relationship in the future.

For now, you may want to read “Ten Ways to Know You’re Over Your Ex” by staff writer Jen Levy.

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