What To Do When Your Ex Gets Engaged
By: Almie Rose |
There comes a time in all our lives in which we’re met with a harsh reality that we’ve grown up. For some people, this means seeing their friends have kids. For others, it’s getting their first real job. For me, it was discovering that my ex-boyfriend got engaged. Never have I felt so old or so confused. Now, I have an amazing boyfriend whom I am truly grateful for, so this isn’t a piece about “the one who got away.” He got away, and I’m fine. You know how they say “everything works out for a reason” and it seems like a crazy, impossible thing to comprehend? But then later you realize, yeah, everything does work out? If he hadn’t left me, I wouldn’t be with the man I’m with now.
I won’t pretend though, that hearing news of my ex’s engagement wasn’t a shock. Because it was. And that’s okay! You’re allowed to be shocked. You can do that. What you shouldn’t do, though, is agonize and lose your sanity over the news. Here’s what you should do when your ex gets engaged.
Wait up though — like an iTunes update, this one comes with some terms and conditions. If, and only if, you guys are on speaking terms and had a great breakup, then, and only then, should you congratulate him. If you check in with each other every so often, and are friendly, it wouldn’t be weird to send him a congratulatory email or text. It’s okay if despite this, deep down you still feel a little weird about it — that’s totally normal.
But if you guys haven’t spoken in months, and/or your break-up was a rough one, then you probably shouldn’t contact him. It’s going to be weird, and might open a can of worms you won’t want to deal with. You’re not obligated to congratulate him.
Give yourself a moment to mourn.
If you’re still hung-up on your ex, don’t beat yourself up over it — that’s not going to accomplish anything good. And it doesn’t make you a failure, either. It makes you human. Someone you once loved very much is now marrying someone else, and that can be a hard thing to accept. So give yourself a moment to mourn your relationship. I promise that’s okay. You don’t have to be automatically peppy and happy about the news. Notice the word “moment” though. I mean it. You don’t want to spend hours, days, or weeks mourning this. Not worth it!
After you’re done mourning and being sad, make yourself happy and awesome again. Basically, treat yourself. Get yourself a bottle of champagne and toast to your health and your wonderful future. Go out with some friends and hit the town — may I suggest some karaoke? The idea is to have fun, and not to wallow. Buy yourself that handbag you’ve been eyeing. Make yourself a priority.
Look towards your future.
Use this moment to stop, take a deep breath, and make plans for your future. This can be a learning moment and a growing moment for you. Instead of hearing this news and then spiraling, you can use it to propel you towards goals that you’d like to achieve in your life. What is it you want out of life? Do you want to build a career? Get married? Have kids? Think about how you can get there. Write down your dreams and the steps it will take to reach them, and then make it happen.
And remember: it’s going to be okay. I promise.