Advertising
Advertising

Seeing Your Ex Partner Getting into a New Relationship Is Often Devastating, Here’s What to Do

Seeing Your Ex Partner Getting into a New Relationship Is Often Devastating, Here’s What to Do

So you’re casually checking out what’s up on Instagram’s “Explore” section and suddenly a photo of your ex with a new flame shows up.

Yes, your relationship ended but it is still awkward and somewhat devastating to see your former partner moving on, especially if the breakup is still fresh. Then, you start seeing them all over the place, laughing, having fun, and posting photos on social media profiles.

Like adding salt to the wound, people start texting to inform you about your ex’s new relationship. This leads to self-doubt, low self-esteem and in worst scenario – depression. Is there any way to overcome this? YES Of course!

Why is it hard to accept ex’s new relationship?

How many times have you promised yourself you’ll move on and stop thinking about your ex and his/her new relationship? We do it quite often. Sometimes we can’t help it and jealousy kicks in. Getting over your ex and the idea of them finding someone else already can be easier said than done.

According to one study, 88% of 18- to 35-year-olds have stalked their ex’s social media profiles and 80% of them also stalked their ex’s new partners.

Advertising

The more stalking occurred, the more distress we experience , scientists say. We always feel this urge to check their profiles, but it only causes more pain. It is not uncommon to develop symptoms of depression [1] including social isolation, feelings of helpless and worthlessness, guilt, difficulty concentrating, and others.

Why is it so difficult to just stop and move on?

No, you are not the problem here. Scientists explain that we are always in competition with our own sex. Since the ancient men and women natural instinct was to breed and fight for the alpha dog status, the devastation caused by ex’s new relationship is instinctive too. Subconsciously you think “that’s mine” despite being aware you’re not even together.

At one point or another, you start thinking maybe he/she will dump the new flame and you’ll be together. Deep down you know this outlook is detrimental to your emotional health and overall being at the same time. If you don’t move on and continue to dwell over your ex finding a new love, you’ll deprive yourself of the opportunity to find a new boy/girlfriend as well.

For instance, you may stress out over the fact your ex has a new flame but you don’t. But, just because you’re single it doesn’t mean you are emotionally available. Other people pick up on that and know you wouldn’t be able to commit. You owe it to yourself to move on and find the love, happiness, and a relationship that you deserve. But how to do it; you probably wonder. These tips can help.

Always remember…

Newer doesn’t always equal better

Advertising

One of the most common reasons why we can’t let go of the fact our ex has a new love is that we automatically assume this new person is better than you in every way. In order to overcome this problem, you should ditch those thoughts that say your ex got an upgrade. This new person in their life isn’t necessarily more attractive, smarter, or prettier than you are.

Bear in mind that the relationship ended because things didn’t work out, it’s life and those things happen to everyone. Banishing negative thoughts isn’t always easy, but with regular practice, you can do it successfully. Every time you start thinking the other person is better and you’re worthless, think of a reason to debunk those thoughts.

New relationship doesn’t erase the old one

It’s easy to think that the new relationship, especially if the breakup is fresh, erases everything you two had. But, that is impossible! No, this new person is not your replacement. In fact, he/she doesn’t want to be a mere replacement as well. The new relationship doesn’t come with some magical option that deletes a person’s past. Both of you will still share the same memories, it’s entirely natural. Accepting this fact is a part of growing up and acknowledging it is time to move on.

No, he/she didn’t win

Advertising

Okay, you’ve probably thought about this already; your ex won because he/she found a new guy or girl before you did. This isn’t about winning, how quickly you get into the new relationship depends on your needs and preferences. Your ex’s new relationship doesn’t make you a loser. And who cares whether someone else would consider the other person a winner. Two people were in a relationship, so someone else’s opinion shouldn’t knock you down.

Look for a role model

Humans learn not only from their own experiences but from other people too. We can strengthen our willpower just by learning from people we consider good role models. A practical way to deal with your ex’s new relationship is to look for a role model from your own life or pop culture i.e. any person who’s been in the same situation and overcame it successfully. It won’t take long, we’ve all been there. Now, in the moments of weakness and despair, think of your role model and how he/she tackled this situation and came out of it as a bigger, better person.

Get a hobby to have some fun

When we have too much time on our hands, we tend to think all kinds of things and they’re usually negative. You get caught up with one thought and it grows inside, makes you feel worse. You just need to preoccupy yourself, find a hobby, do something you’re passionate about. In turn, you’ll boost your confidence, reduce stress, feel emotionally better and the best thing of all – you won’t spend too much time focusing on your ex and his/her new partner.

Advertising

Watch out for the white bear

Psychologists define a white bear as an occurrence when we try not to think about something or someone and we end up thinking even more . Don’t be alarmed if your ex and his girl pop up in your mind from time to time. Let’s face it, sometimes you think of people from your high school too. Is that a sign of concern? No! Forcing yourself to stop thinking about them could induce the counterproductive effect. You just need a good strategy to deal with those thoughts such as finding a positive characteristic about yourself each time you think the other person is better (1st point).

Be patient and take your time to recover

When it comes to dealing with the ex moving on, we tend to feel depressed and hurt because we don’t expect them to do it so soon. This happens regardless of how long it’s been since breakup or who induced it. Sometimes you are the one who broke up, but you still feel upset when the ex moved on. Don’t take his/her actions as a measure of your own worth and avoid considering them as some sort of a payback. Remember, people, heal at different times and at different rates. The best thing to do is to focus on yourself, your emotional and physical wellbeing, and get back into the game to find a new, healthy relationship when you feel the time is right.

Getting over an ex is not the easiest thing in the world, particularly if the other person moved on and found someone else. This is a major blow to our self-esteem and mental health, but only because we tend to compare ourselves with other people. The key is to develop a positive mindset and have a healthy lifestyle [2]. You’ll move on at your own pace and stay open to a new relationship.

Reference

More by this author

Seeing Your Ex Partner Getting into a New Relationship Is Often Devastating, Here’s What to Do A Vegan Diet Is Not Only About Giving Up On Meat, It’s More Than That! 5 Home Appliances That You Can’t Live Without 5 Pie Recipes That You’ll Definitely Wanna Try This Weekend 7 Craziest Things Fitness Instructors Want You to Do

Trending in Psychology

1Narcissistic Personality: What Is It and How to Deal with a Narcissist? 2What Makes a Relationship Boring and How to Avoid It 3How We Are Confusing Self-Love with Narcissism In This Generation 4A Negotiation Is Like a Game, You Can’t Get the Best Deal Without a Strategy 54 Simple Ways to Make Boring Work Become Interesting

Read Next

Advertising
Advertising

Last Updated on August 16, 2018

Narcissistic Personality: What Is It and How to Deal with a Narcissist?

Narcissistic Personality: What Is It and How to Deal with a Narcissist?

He asks you for your opinion, but only follows his own advice regardless of what you say.She loves to talk about herself, everything about her is just better than you.  When you try to share anything happy about yourself, she seriously doubts it.

If you know someone who acts like these examples, there’s a chance they might be a narcissist.

What is a narcissistic personality?

Narcissism is a spectrum personality disorder which most of us have.

In popular culture, narcissism is interpreted as a person who’s in love with themselves, more accurately, their idealized selves. Narcissists believe that they are too unique to be understood and that they are so good that they demand for admiration from others.

Psychologist Stephen Johnson writes that,[1]

the narcissist is someone who has buried his true self-expression in response to early injuries and replaced it with a highly developed, compensatory false self.

The Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM) describes narcissistic personality as a personality disorder. It is a spectrum disorder, which means it exists on a continuum ranging from some narcissistic traits to the full-blown personality disorder.[2]

Narcissistic Personality Disorder is not very common, but the truth is, we all have some of the narcissistic traits.

Advertising

Traits of a narcissist:

  • They have a deep need for admiration and validation. They think they’re special and too unique to be understood.
  • They feel they are superior to other. They achieve more and know a lot more than you.
  • They do not show their vulnerabilities. They fear what others think of them and they want to remain superior in all situations.
  • They are unwilling to recognize or identify with the feelings and needs of others. They want to be the centre of attention and believe that showing emotions is a sign of weakness.
  • They are skilled manipulators and are emotionally abusive. They know how to make use of their charm to take advantage of others to get what they want.

How are narcissists different from others?

Narcissism expert and the author of Narcissism in a Nutshell, Zari Ballard, tried to answer some common questions asked by non-narcissists about what a narcissist thinks and feels from a narcissist’s perspective.[3]

Do narcissists know they are narcissists and are they happy?

We could really care less about how others feel. We enjoy our so called cold existence. True narcissists don’t want to change. We feel in total control of our lives using this method.

Do narcissists know or understand right from wrong?

Narcissists know the difference between right and wrong because they understand cause and effect. There is no “guilty conscience” giving them a clue and they are displaying the symptom of being “indifferent to social norms” while most likely presenting as ‘cold-hearted.’

Narcissists have a very different thinking mechanism. They see things from a different perspective. Unlike non-narcissists and empaths, they don’t have much sympathy and are reluctant to show emotions to others.

Why do people become narcissists?

1. Narcissism is vulnerability taken to an extreme.

The root of a narcissistic personality is a strong resistance to feeling vulnerable with anyone.[4]

Narcissists refuse to put themselves in a position where they feel vulnerable. They fear that others will take advantage of their weaknesses, so they learn to camouflage their weaknesses by acting strong and powerful. The think showing emotions to others is a sign of weakness, so they learn to hide their emotions and act cold-hearted most of the times.

Narcissists live in a state of anxiety because they are highly aware of their emotions and how others think of them.

Advertising

Vulnerability aversion, is the root of a narcissistic personality.

2. A narcissistic personality could be a result of a wounded past.

Narcissists are desperate to seek validation constantly because they either didn’t feel worthwhile and valued in the past, or were being paid too much attention as the most precious and unique one in the world.

Faulty or inadequate parenting, for example a lack of limit setting, is believed to be a major cause, and both permissive and authoritarian styles of parenting have been found to promote narcissistic symptoms.[5]

Both parents who fail to see the worth in a child, and parents who spoil and give excessive praise to the child promote narcissism as the child grows. While the former ones make the child feel inferior of others and want to get more attention, the latter ones encourage an idealized-self in the child.

How to deal with a narcissist?

1. If someone close to you is a narcissist, embrace the differences.

There’re different personality types and not everyone will think and act the same as you do. Instead of trying to change others, learn to accept the differences and strike a balance when you really have to communicate with them.

2. Don’t try to change them, focus on your own needs.

Try to understand that narcissists are resistant to change, it’s more important for you to see who they really are, instead of who you want them to be. Focus on how you feel, and what you want yourself to be.

Embrace the fact that there’re different types of personality and the only thing you can control is your attitude and your own actions.

3. Recognize what they do only comes from their insecurity.

Narcissists are quite vulnerable deep inside, they question others because that’s how they can make themselves feel better.

Advertising

When you learn that what a narcissist does to you is nothing personal, but something that comes from their insecurity, you know that sometimes they just need a certain amount of reassurance.

This is especially important if the narcissist is someone you have to closely work with, or if they’re your family member. The right amount of reassurance can calm them down and get the tasks on hand completed.

4. Ask them what would others think instead of what’d others feel.[6]

Narcissists don’t feel guilty, but they care about how others think of them deep in their heart.

Clinical psychologist Al Bernstein explains:

There are just things, like other people’s feelings, that narcissists rarely consider. If you have their ear, don’t tell them how people might react; instead, ask probing questions. Narcissists are much more likely to act on ideas that they think they thought up themselves.

If you have to work with a narcissist closely, focus on the facts and ideas, not the emotions.

5. Let go of the need of getting a narcissist’s approval.

You’re not who a narcissist says you are. Don’t let their blame game undermine your self-esteem, and don’t argue with them just to defend what you believe is right.

There is no point arguing with a narcissist just to prove them wrong because they will not give in proving themselves right. It’s more likely that you’ll get more upset when they disagree with you in an unpleasant way.

Advertising

Know your own worth and detach from a narcissist’s opinion on you.

6. If a narcissist is hurting you, stay away from them.

Remember, a healthy relationship is two-sided. It’s about mutual respect and it’s based on give and take. But any kind of relationship with a narcissist is likely to be the contrary, it’s about making the narcissist happy and constantly supporting them. A relationship like this will only weigh you down and is unhealthy for your growth.

7. Set a boundary and always keep it.

If you’re setting a boundary, you have to be willing to keep it. When a narcissist sees that you’re trying to take back control of your life, they will try to test your limits, it’s just their instinct to do it.

Be prepared that your boundary will be challenged. Make your boundary clear, have all the actions needed to be taken in your mind.

For example, if you have decided to stop communicating with them, they will likely to show up in front of you just to talk to you. Be brave enough to keep your boundary, don’t back down and get close to them again; or else they will not take your boundary seriously any more.

8. Learn when to walk away.

When a narcissist starts to make you feel uncomfortable and doubt about yourself, it’s time to pick yourself up and give yourself enough respect to just walk away from them.

If you’re in love with a narcissist, you should seriously think about ending the relationship and move on for a better life. If the narcissist is your family member, you don’t have to be cruel to them, but it’s better to keep distance from them.

Reference

Read Next