How to Fall Out of Love

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In a way, falling in love is easy. You just let yourself free-fall from a cliff and let gravity do its job. It’s like a magnet drawing you in, and you can’t fight it or force it.

Falling out of love is harder.

You have to pull yourself up from something that’s sucking you in. You have to move against the current.

Sometimes I wonder if I would be better at this cycle of in-and-out-of-love had I gotten an earlier start at it. I was twenty years old the first time I fell in love, a young age by all means. But most people, as far as I know, learn the repertoire of love and heartbreak at a much more tender age.

I never had that high school sweetheart, or even those silly school hallway crushes. I went to an all-girls high school, and as a straight female, there weren't many prospects there. Sure, I went on a few dates with guys and had someone ask me to prom, but it wasn't the same as falling in reckless puppy love with that cute guy who sat in front of you in biology class.

I wish I could have gone through these growing pains during high school, and have them contained to that one period of my life. How to text guys, how to fall in love, how to be a girlfriend, how to break-up, how to fall out of love...I wish I learned all these things during a time when it didn't matter, when mistakes were to be expected.

I get that nobody ever becomes an expert at these things and that there isn’t a timeline for life lessons like these. Heartbreak hurts every time, no matter how old you are. And falling in love is always a shock to the system – that's why it's so magical. But I can’t help but think how much easier it would be if I was at the same pace as everyone else, that I made my initial fatal mistakes when everyone else did. Would I have been more prepared?

So while I’ve discovered how to fall in love, I’ve yet to conquer how to fall out of love.

The most obvious answer is to rebound.

Go to parties, swipe through Tinder, flirt with strangers, make small talk… After connecting so deeply with someone, I’ve floated back up to the shallow surface and now, I have to start all over again. Am I just lazy or does not that sound utterly exhausting? Once again, I have to filter out the duds and finally open up to another person. Maybe I should have a list of my insecurities, hopes, and dreams on hand to make the process go by easier.

More that that, it scares me that I could love again, love another. Because that would mean he could do it too. I’m not so insecure to believe that I was just a notch on his bedpost, but maybe I am tacked onto a list of people loved and lost. And maybe he will be on a list of my very own one day.

Rebounding would mean to accept that something has been lost, that I have fallen, and now I am trying to get back up. But I don’t want to get back up just quite yet.

In a way, I don’t even want to move on, to fall out of love. Or perhaps it would be more accurate to say that I don’t want to find someone new right now. Are my friends right? Is the best way to finding another person the best way to deal with a break-up?

I am trying to convince myself that the thought of loneliness doesn’t scare me. Should loneliness be the reason for throwing myself into the arms of some guy? I don’t want to find validation through others, but am I strong enough to be content with myself? Simply finding some guy would just be a Band-Aid on top of a wound; it won’t help with the void I feel in my life.

As a young teen I wished for “boy drama”, for the kind of heart-wrenching romance you find on the pages of young adult books. I wanted to fall deeply for someone, and then to go through the agony of heartbreak. I wanted to sing to break-up songs and actually know what the hell the lyrics really mean. A little masochistic, yes, but I just wanted something to happen to me, to feel something. I cringe at that thought now – certainly, the defining moments of my life shouldn’t necessarily be tied to some romance or some boy. I should be able to find value in my life, in myself without someone else’s reassurance and validation. And I don’t want to just jump into another relationship just for the sake forgetting the last one.

So I probably shouldn’t have titled this post as “How to Fall Out of Love,” as if I have a clue how to do so. With that, here is my classified ad: advice wanted on how to fall out of love, how to be alone and not lonely. Hmu.







2 comments

  1. Have a true closure killing every residual possibility of getting back together.

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    1. Hello Anonymous. Thanks for your comment; I've thought about it quite a bit over these past few months. I'm not sure if you're right or if I just don't want you to be.

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