Addictive relationships are like drugs – you have to work hard to kick the habit. These tips for getting over love addiction are practical and effective, and they’ll help you stay away from someone who’s not good for you.
Is It Love or Is It Addiction: The Book That Changed the Way We Think About Romance and Intimacy will help you understand love addiction. It was written by psychotherapist Brenda Schaeffer, and includes many stories of real people struggling to overcome addiction to love.
Sometimes it’s difficult to get over even the worst relationship – but when you’re obsessed about your ex, it feels like you’ll never move on. I know the feeling – there were certain people I thought I’d die without. But I’ve learned that I can actually be very happy without them!
Breaking up with an addictive person can make you stronger and healthier in the long run…if you can just get past the pain and heartache of letting go of someone you love. And, here are seven tips for moving on after getting out of an addictive relationship…
How to Get Over an Addictive Relationship
My first tip should be about building a life outside your relationship – but that’s not just a single tip. It’s a whole article! Read 10 Tips for Building a Life Outside Your Relationship.
1. Enlist a strong support system. Ask your friend, sister, or someone you trust to be your “go to” person. Then, when you feel compelled to call or visit your ex, call your “go to person” instead. She or he will help you remember why you broke up, why you need to let go of this addictive relationship, and how happy and healthy you will be once the worst heartache has passed.
2. Make a list of reasons for breaking up. When you’ve lost someone you love, you may be tempted to obsess about the best parts of your relationship. You may magnifiy your ex-boyfriend or ex-girlfriend’s strengths — and forget about their weaknesses and flaws. Instead of obsessing about your ex, make a list of the reasons your life is better now that you’re single. Pull this list out when you feel lonely or sad.
3. Do something different — make a change in your life! Take a scuba diving class, go on a singles cruise, or join a hiking club in your city. Do something unexpected, something you’ve always wanted to do but were too busy or scared to try. This tip for getting over an addictive relationship has all sorts of additional benefits: you’ll enjoy meeting new people and expanding your horizons – which can translate to increased self-confidence.
4. Cleanse your life: out with the old, in with the new. To get over an addictive relationship, you need to cleanse your life. This means putting, throwing, or giving away everything that your ex gave you or left behind. Deal with everything that you accumulated as a couple, or that reminds you of your ex. This tip serves a double purpose: you’ll declutter you home at the same time.
5. Focus inward — but not on your heartbreak. What have you done lately to achieve your goals? Start thinking about the things you’ve always wanted to change about your career, personality, health, life, home, or relationships. Start thinking about your overall life goals, and write down small steps to achieving your goals.
Are you and your ex co-dependent? Read How to Untangle a Codependent Relationship.
6. Take a vacation from your daily life. You may not be able to afford a trip to Maui or Belize, but you might be able to take a day trip to a nearby city or town. Getting out of your everyday surroundings is a great tip for getting over an addictive relationship because it pulls you out of your normal life!
7. Get and stay physically healthy. Taking care of yourself means staying away from the carton of ice cream (a classic way to heal from breaking up with someone). Instead, stay in the “sweat zone.” Don’t give up on your fitness routine — you need to nourish your body with exercise, food, and sleep. When you’re getting over an addictive relationship, you need to stay physically strong and fit.
For more tips on kicking an addictive relationship, read How to be Happy Without Your Husband’s Love or Money.
Are you healing from an addictive relationship? I welcome your thoughts below.
I'm glad you're here! My name is Laurie Pawlik-Kienlen; my husband Bruce and I live in Vancouver, BC with our critters. We can't have kids, and are learning to accept whatever life brings - both good and bad. I have an MSW (Master of Social Work) from UBC, and degrees in Education and Psychology. I hope you say hello below - I can't give relationship advice, but writing can bring you clarity and insight.