Skip to content
Catholic Online Logo

By Jessica Yadegaran

1/15/2009 (5 years ago)

McClatchy Newspapers (www.mctdirect.com)

Contra Costa Times (MCT) - Your relationship survived the holidays _ barely. And, while others resolve this month to cut their sugar intake or up their cardio, you know what change the new year brings for you: calling it quits with your boyfriend or girlfriend.

Highlights

By Jessica Yadegaran

McClatchy Newspapers (www.mctdirect.com)

1/15/2009 (5 years ago)

Published in Marriage & Family


"The new year brings about a cleaning house mentality, out with the old and in with the new," says Debra Mandel, a Los Angeles-based psychologist and author of "Don't Call Me a Drama Queen" (Alyson Books). "This helps many people believe they can make necessary changes with a fresh start. Motivation and inspiration run high during January."

While no breakup is pleasant, it's how you behave after you crush his heart _ or vice versa _ that can have a significant impact on your mood and outlook on future relationships. Sure, feel guilty. Cry your eyes out. Then, toss the tissues, turn off the bad TV, and vow to be a cool ex when and if you see him or her again. Because you know you will. You have mutual friends and swear by the barista at the same Starbucks.

"You can't control the other person, but you can try to leave with integrity," Mandel says. "I don't know too many people who enjoy going through breakups. But I think the more you can reframe it as a learning experience or growing opportunity, the better you'll feel."

And the more gracefully you'll handle dealing with your ex in 2009. We presented Mandel, a relationship expert, with five post-breakup scenarios and asked her to tell us how a cool, drama-free ex would handle it compared with a self-pitying, irrational ex. Enjoy.

Scenario 1

A mutual friend has invited both of you to a party. It's been two months since he broke it off with you. Save for a few late-night text messages, you haven't talked or seen each other since. Suddenly, you spot him with a girl you don't recognize.

Cool ex: Hold your head high, walk over to them, introduce yourself and wish them well, Mandel says. "If you feel you've just been kicked in the gut, leave the party early," she adds.

Bad ex: You play games and try to make him jealous. "He doesn't need to be punished," Mandel says. "He's moved on and so should you." Walking over and throwing a drink on his face won't go over well, either, she adds.

Scenario 2

It's a Saturday morning. You're chilling at the park with Baxter, the Shih Tzu you share with your ex. The park has special meaning for both of you, as you spent many a weekend there as a couple. You see your ex walking toward you, and she is alone.

Cool ex: Be polite and make small talk. "Focus on Baxter and how he's been doing," Mandel says.

Bad ex: Use Baxter as an emotional weapon, as in, "The dog enjoys my company better than yours," Mandel says. This ex may also try to create unnecessary conflict, such as trying to change the agreement over pet custody again.

Scenario 3

As a couple, you enjoyed a close relationship with your family. Now that you've broken up, however, your mom is still in touch with your ex-girlfriend. At times, it feels as if she's even aligning herself with your ex, so you have to hear updates about her life. You are finding it difficult to move on.

Cool ex: This is a common post-breakup issue, Mandel says. She suggests you tell your family that you don't mind them having a friendship with your ex, but that you're asking that they take a temporary hiatus from it. "That way, you can process your feelings and hopefully get more support from your own family," she adds.

Bad ex: A dramatic ex would use this situation to either stir up trouble with the ex's family or alienate his own. Or worse, Mandel says: "He or she would give the family (member) an ultimatum. "Me or her."

Scenario 4

It's time to exchange belongings. You've collected all the expensive suits, books and gadgets he left at your house. And he's got some of your best dresses and the special china your mom gave you. You agree to meet up and make the exchange.

Cool ex: Meet in a neutral place, chitchat for a bit, exchange belongings and be on your way. "If it was a rough breakup, I think it's better to leave the stuff on the doorstep," Mandel says. "Unless you guys are friends or see each other frequently."

Bad ex: Use the exchange as a fantasy to see the person one last time or to try to get back together. Also, get caught up in the petty ownership of insignificant items. "Pick battles over the things that might be sentimental or meaningful to you, but don't fight over the blender," she says.

Scenario 5

You and your ex broke up a month ago. You had been trying to end it for months, but every time you did, he accused you of cheating. Now, he is spreading rumors about you to friends.

Cool ex: Address the issue with your ex. Says Mandel: "Go in with the best intentions and tell him or her, 'If you have something to say, I'd appreciate if you'd say it to me.'" Then, call the friends and clear the air.

Bad ex: Lower yourself to his standards by calling the friends and talking trash about him. "Revengeful fantasies are fine, but going into the world and trying to be vengeful usually kicks you in the butt," Mandel says. "Drama breeds more drama."

___

2009, Contra Costa Times (Walnut Creek, Calif.).



Comments


More Marriage & Family

Catholic teacher sues diocese after she was fired for... Watch

Image of In vitro fertilization requires the conception of several children in a test-tube to maximize the outcome of success, but then the unwanted children are destroyed before being implanted into their mother's womb.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

A Roman Catholic schoolteacher who says she was fired for trying to become pregnant through in vitro fertilization (IVF) will have her case heard in court following a favorable ruling by a U.S. District Court judge. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - Former Roman ... continue reading


REPORT: One in 10 girls worldwide sexually abused Watch

Image of The study revealed that about six out of 10 children aged between two and 14 were subjected to physical punishment from their parents or guardians on a regular basis.

By Catholic Online - (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

The world has a long way to go in regards to respecting its female inhabitants, according to a new United Nations reports. The grim statistics compiled by officials have found that 120 million girls, or slightly more than one in 10 are raped or sexually abused ... continue reading


STUDY: For children, there is NO 'amicable divorce' Watch

Image of Parents who remain amicable during a divorce do their children no favors, according to a new study.

By Catholic Online - (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

"Amicable divorce," which usually refers to the dissolution of a marriage without bad feelings or upheavals on the part of the parents still do the children no favors. That's the findings of a major study conducted across the United States. LOS ANGELES, CA ... continue reading


LARGELY FATHERLESS: 36 percent of those turning 21 this year grew up without dads Watch

Image of It must be noted that there are a lot of individuals, through courage, perseverance and hard work, overcome the disadvantage of being born into a single-parent household.

By Catholic Online - (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Approximately 36 percent of the American generation, more than a third, born from 1993 through 2012, due to turn 21 this year, were born to unmarried mothers. According to the Centers for Disease Control, at least 40 percent of the babies born in each of the ... continue reading


Remember the Alamo - Texas' abortion law now challenged in court Watch

Image of Abortion rights activists protest on August 4, 2014, outside a U.S. federal court in Austin, Texas, where a hearing started for a case by the Center for Reproductive Rights against a new set of restrictions on abortion clinics in the state that go into effect in September

By Lisa Anderson, Thomson Reuters Foundation

Abortion rights groups challenged Texas' sweeping anti-abortion law in federal court on Monday, as a federal judge in Alabama ruled that the state's similar restrictions on abortion were unconstitutional. NEW YORK (Thomson Reuters Foundation) - In its second challenge ... continue reading


Indian toddler with severe water on the brain survives surgery Watch

Image of Surgeons carried out a series of operations to reduce the size of Roona's head. Sent home after surgery, her parents were warned she had little chance of survival.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

With a freakish head 37 inches in circumference, a three-year-old Indian girl has underwent surgery to reduce her deformity. Arduous hours of surgery later, she's smiling for the first time with a more normal-sized head. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - ... continue reading


European Court of Human Rights: Europe CAN NOT be forced to recognize same-sex 'marriages'

Image of Marriage IS between a Man and a Woman ONLY.

By Adelaide Mena

Is the disordered homosexual lifestyle destroying our great American culture? Strasbourg, France, (CNA/EWTN News) - The European Court of Human Rights ruled that the refusal to recognize same-sex "marriages" does not violate the European Convention on Human ... continue reading


Are You a Ready or an Unready Catholic?

Image of

By Andrew M. Greenwell, Esq.

There are many Catholics who are "unready" Catholics, that is, operating under ill advice or bad counsel.  They have adopted the counsel of sophists, satanists, or doubt-sowers, and have departed as a result from the teachings of the Church.  Their ... continue reading


Andrew M. Greenwell on Same-Sex 'Marriage': Framing the Issue Right Watch

Image of

By Andrew M. Greenwell, Esq.

The first step for a Catholic to recognize his obligation to oppose same-sex "marriage," if he does not see it or comprehend it, is to rid himself of the flawed moral heuristic (a moral rule of thumb or short cut) some ideologue has chosen and which may be blinding him ... continue reading


Pacing a New Online Relationship

Image of Pacing an online relationship is different for each couple.

By Catholic Match

Every couple that meets on CatholicMatch moves at their own pace. For some, it's important to move from online connection to a face-to-face date as soon as realistically possible. For others, it's important to let things grow gradually. Matt and Katie fell into the ... continue reading


All Marriage & Family News

Newsletters

Newsletter Sign Up icon

Stay up to date with the latest news, information, and special offers

Daily Readings

Reading 1, Job 9:1-12, 14-16
1 Job spoke next. He said:2 Indeed, I know ... Read More

Psalm, Psalms 88:10-11, 12-13, 14-15
10 Do you work wonders for the dead, can shadows rise ... Read More

Gospel, Luke 9:57-62
57 As they travelled along they met a man on the road ... Read More

Saint of the Day

Saint of the Day for October 1st, 2014 Image

St. Therese of Lisieux
October 1: Generations of Catholics have admired this young saint, called ... Read More

Inform, Inspire & Ignite Logo

Find Catholic Online on Facebook and get updates right in your live feed.

Become a fan of Catholic Online on Facebook


Follow Catholic Online on Twitter and get News and Product updates.

Follow us on Twitter