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Breakup Stages

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I am wondering what stage of breakup I am in. Breakup occurred three weeks ago, had been five years with him. I’m starting to accept the reality, but I’m wondering if I’m still in denial and have the other four stages of grief to go through. He (former boyfriend) blindsided me with the breakup, it was sudden. I have spent many days being extremely upset and wanting him to contact me and tell me he regrets that decision. While I still hope he eventually regrets it, I feel like I’m starting to accept he is gone and let go. This would mean I skipped the anger, bargaining, and depression stages of grief and I can’t imagine I’d be in acceptance this early. However, I don’t feel like I’m in shock as much, and I am consciously telling myself the relationship is over and I need to move on. Does this mean I’m still in denial? Or does it seem like I am transitioning to a different stage?

Breakup Stages

Answered by on -


Not everyone experiences grief in the same way. I’m sure that you have heard that many times. Thus, I cannot offer any opinion about what “stage” you may be in.

You stated that you were “blindsided” by the breakup. That you were oblivious to his unhappiness is unusual. Perhaps you were ignoring signs that it was ending. I’m wondering if he explained why he decided to leave? No matter the reason, it still hurts.

Breakups are difficult. That’s because usually they are not mutual. Usually, one person doesn’t want the relationship to end and they are the ones who suffer the most. Most people can relate because they too have experienced a similar loss. Psychologically, it’s difficult to endure the pain of a breakup but it will get better with time. It sounds as if you are handling it quite fine. You seem to be moving on, as all of us must after a break up.

Counseling may help to examine your situation. It’s worthwhile to examine the situation in general and specifically why you were blindsided by the breakup. It might also assist you in moving on. The best antidote to a breakup is a new relationship. Good luck and please take care.

Dr. Kristina Randle

Breakup Stages

Therapists live, online right now, from BetterHelp:

Kristina Randle, Ph.D., LCSW

Kristina Randle, Ph.D., LCSW is a licensed psychotherapist and Assistant Professor of Social Work and Forensics with extensive experience in the field of mental health. She works in private practice with adults, adolescents and families. Kristina has worked in a large array of settings including community mental health, college counseling and university research centers.

APA Reference
Randle, K. (2018). Breakup Stages. Psych Central. Retrieved on October 1, 2020, from
Scientifically Reviewed
Last updated: 28 Nov 2018 (Originally: 29 Nov 2018)
Last reviewed: By a member of our scientific advisory board on 28 Nov 2018
Published on Psych All rights reserved.