Breaking Up



Some felt they were a modern day Romeo and Juliet. The reality,

however, is that they were a heartbreaking example of what can go wrong with

adolescents.

Christian Dalvia, 14 and Maryling Flores, 13 were sweethearts who

were forbidden by Flores? mother to see each other. In early November, 1995,

the young couple met one last time. Standing at the edge of a Florida canal,

they joined hands and jumped 15 feet into the cold, murky water to their

deaths.

Their deaths may sound romantic to some love struck teenagers when,

in actuality, it?s just plain stupid. There were probably many other reasons for

their deaths, but ultimately, the thought of not being together tortured to the

point of wanting to take their own lives. This is a very extreme example of

what can go wrong with teenage heartbreak. One minute they?re inseperable -

sharing their most intimate thoughts and details - the next minute they are

faces across a crowded room or polite acquaintances at best. These are the

consequences that come along with a breakup.

We teens hear about love all around us, in music and movies, on TV,

in stories. If you look in the dictionary, they define love as a tender, warm

feeling; warm liking; affection; attachment. Love is simply a choice we make

when we find someone who makes us happy, and who we trust with our

innermost thoughts and feelings. We hear that love will make us happy. We

hear that single people are lonely. We are told that if we are not part of a

couple, we are not complete. We all want to be part of this thing called ?love?.

Okay, we get a boyfriend or girlfriend, now everything should be

perfect. But, it?s not perfect, because life never is. It is easy to become

disappointed. Feelings can change. One person may decide to say good-bye.

When that happens, the one left behind will feel rejected.

Rejection means someone choosing between one thing and another.

The one who doesn?t get chosen is rejected. This person who feels rejected

thinks as if they are not good enough. It hurts. When the person you love

decides to leave you, it is even more painful. Does rejection mean failure?

No. The end of a relationship means that the boyfriend or girlfriend decided

that s/he wanted a change in the path of their lives. The reasons for this are

within the ex - not within the rejected person. No one is a less valuable

person because their boyfriend or girlfriend?s feelings have changed.

What To Expect

According to the book, ?The Complete Idiots Guide To Dating?, there

are nine stages of rejection that almost all ?dumpees? must go through. The

pain may be awful, but each stage is part of the healing process. The stages

may not follow in an exact order, but they will all be experienced.

The Denial Phase: ?This can?t be happening.? During this stage, people may

find themselves waiting for the phone to ring and not believing that the

relationship is over. Some people may go through feelings of worthlessness

and obsession. These people are ones who lack coping skills.

Solution: Acknowledge your feelings about what has happened. Accept, but

do not dwell on shame and embarrassment, and all the

?shouldal/woulda/coulda?s?.

The Bargaining Phase: Driving yourself crazy, thinking that, ?If I get my hair

cut,? or ?If I don?t call her for a week,? s/he will change his/her mind.

Solution: Accept that it?s over.

The Loneliness Phase: Feeling as if no one understands or cares. Some people

will jump at the first person who shows the slightest interest in them, just for

the fact of proving that they can still get someone to want them.

Solution: Surround yourself with people who do care, and those who openly

say so. Remind yourself often that you are loved.

The Heartbreak Phase: Feeling like your heart is really breaking. You may even

feel pain in your chest, or want to throw up when you think of the person or

see the person with someone else.

Solution: You can go on. If you?re feeling really bad, snap your fingers to

interrupt the thought.

The Blame Phase: Pointing the finger at you or at your ex for what each of you

did wrong.

Solution: Decide that neither of you are at fault and both of you are

responsible for the breakup.

The Depression Phase: Feeling sad, worthless, and foolish. You have trouble

eating and sleeping and you may imagine you?ll never love again.

Solution: Allow yourself to feel pain but don?t wallow in self-pity. Keep busy

with exercise or projects.

The Anger Phase: Feeling furious for being rejected.

Solution: Experience the anger, but don?t exaggerate it. Don?t let yourself

become