In My Head: The Days That Follow A Breakup

I truly am having a hard time writing about this breakup.  The words flowed so easily after Dan (R) and Bobby. The emotions gushed like a geyser from the depths of heartbreak, but not this time.  This time is something very different, I feel cold, sort of mean, and maybe more angry?  It seems like all my feelings are out of order and I can’t actually gather my thoughts.

Honestly, I feel dead inside, which is way worse than feeling the pain of heartbreak.  Every day that passes it feels like something is closer to snapping and breaking for good.


He wouldn’t say goodbye, he says he can’t live without me.  I was crying and said I would miss him.

I drank myself to sleep through periods of heavy tears but had no desire to reach out to him.   I found that to be interesting that I didn’t feel that kind of desperation, just overwhelming sadness.

Saturday (day 1)

I was surprised / not surprised there was no goodnight or good morning text. He said he understood I needed to say goodbye, and I see he understood my request for no contact.

I was so tired and depressed I could barely get out of bed. But I did. Had my hair done and met a friend for dinner.

I got so drunk, really drunk. But we didn’t even talk about him all night. I told the story and we moved on.  I was surprised I didn’t need to dwell on it.

Getting that drunk was a massive mistake because I made myself sick. Not a fun night.  But, good to get out for so many hours today.  Thank goodness the day passed so quickly.

Sunday (day 2)

Friends checked on me which was nice. Other than being sick most of the morning I was doing ok. I found a series to binge watch and that kept me engaged all day in a dark living room.

I occasionally wondered if the ping in the phone was him but found my heart didn’t  drop as I expected when it wasn’t him either. I guess I don’t really expect to hear from him?

I’m sort of surprised he hasn’t contacted me by now. I think?  I’m not really sure what I feel. This absence is weird. Almost 7 months of speaking to him more than any other person in my life and now silence.  It’s so strange.  I sincerely feel like I am missing a limb right now.

I’m also more mad than I had been. All those words and declarations of love, all meaningless ultimately.  I do believe that if he loved me the way he said he did, then he would be able to find a way to be with me.  And if he doesn’t, he must not be the man I thought he was.  I am questioning everything right now.

Still some periods of tears.  Not terrible. A clear understanding that I am much better coping through this breakup. Knowing I will come of it stronger does somehow help…not sure I could understand that last year.  My belief that he truly believed how much he loved me helps.  I know he believes we can be together one day, but he won’t change and he will convince himself that it’s all just too difficult to change his life.

I imagine his life just going on as normal, maybe more than mine. He is clearly better at compartmentalizing than I am.  That sort of makes me mad too.  It’s not a real mad, I’m still too sad to be angry.

Actually, to be honest, I’m going to bed more baffled than anything else.  Did I expect he truly meant he couldn’t live without me?  Ha. Imagine that. Maybe I do allow myself more hope than I should. Everything just feels off kilter without him connected to me every minute of my day.

Monday (day 3)

Still off kilter and feeling empty, plus my period made an unexpected early appearance this morning and made a mess.  Just feeling disconnected and lethargic.  Found and app to download our text so I can save them and get them off my phone so I don’t go down the path of looking back too frequently.  Still a bit in disbelief he hasn’t contacted me at all.

Rightly or wrongly it really makes me wonder if he is hurting being apart from me as much as he said he would.

I wonder most about  all the things he said about me, about us, about being in love and I am trying to reconcile those things to his absence.  That’s the worst, knowing it’s gone, he’s gone.  He gave me so much peace deep inside, I never felt such a depth of love from anyone since I was 17 years old (and what do you know of true love then?)  When I was anxious or worried, he calmed me and I fear having to be without him.

I’m not afraid of being alone, now I am afraid of being without him.  That seems significantly different to me.

Why don’t I feel the need to reach out like I have in the past?

I also slept through the nightly relatively soundly.  What scares me most about this absence of emotion is that it’s so different from my past experiences….I do worry that I am burying something deep down.

I worry I am simply a simmering volcano.

Do I believe that somewhere, deep down, he will call, send a song, tell me how miserable he is without me?  Or am I too afraid not to know how he feels in order to reinforce my own feelings?

Tuesday (day 4)

Happy to be heading back to work and a very busy work week ahead.  I made dinner plans for every single night this week to ensure my mind is off of him as much as possible and I have no reason to be reaching out to him.

I woke up confused that it’s been 4 days since I’ve heard from him.  I can’t knock the feeling of literally losing a piece of myself. I’m miserable, but able to function.   One step at a time I keep telling myself.

My friends who know say I’m strangely accepting and calm, but think it’s a weird kid if calm. I agree. I feel weird.

I’m too busy at work to think let alone be emotional. I have a lot of work, more than I can handle and it’s no joke to find every ounce of strength to prioritize.  I look for text from him but don’t have time to dwell.

I did need a break at lunch so quickly stepped out with a friend and was able to talk through it with her. She doesn’t think it’s over. She’s met Bennett and thinks he is waiting for me to reach out first.

Dinner with a Long lost friend and lots of alcohol gets me through the rest of the night. The laughter was wonderful and there was no trace of discussion about him.

Tomorrow is another massive day at work and I like the utter exhaustion right now.

Work doesn’t allow me much reprieve and  is a massive help for me.  My only concern is my exhaustion: from a heavy period and restlessness related to him.  I still feel numb and empty…not much else. I keep turning over in my head “how could you say all those things to me?”  But saying and acting, we know, are two different things.

He said that maybe this was the kick in the ass he needed.


Wednesday (day 5)

I recall when I could barely get through the days of no contact, and not that these are slipping by all that quickly, but I’m not drowning in sorrow because I have so much work in my head there’s little room for anything else.  I am forcing myself to take a mental break to write.

I suppose I wonder more than anything what’s going through his head.  Does he feel the pain of absence?  Is he distracted?  Is it obvious or is he able to manage easily enough?  Or is it just relief, knowing he wasn’t going to do what he promised me in any case?

Some friends think he’s waiting me out, to see who buckles first.  I’m trying to stay overwhelmingly busy this week but it’s taking it’s toll on me since I’m no spring chicken any more! lol.  I am really tired, my period is excessively heavy and I can feel exhaustion creeping into my bones.

I take the time to think about how I would feel if I heard his voice right now, or held his hand, or kissed him and the emotion is unidentifiable.  What’s the point if nothing can change?

And…..just like that the phone rings and he leaves a message.  And then later, another.  I wasn’t around to answer either call at work but I did text him to let him know I received them.   

So, 5 days of no contact and while I admit my heart jumped at the Sound of his voice, my resolve hasn’t changed. 

I think I’ve come a long way.  


Author: Madeline Harper

My journey through divorce and an emotional and sexual reawakening. Love, laughter, friendships, family and heartbreak included. And there is sex, lots of it, so close your eyes and turn the page if that's not for you! While I started this blog as an endeavor to journal my thoughts and feelings in an attempt to better understand myself, it has become an amazing platform from which I have met some of the most interesting and wonderful people in my life. My path is often crooked, but I hope you will share in the journey with me.

30 thoughts on “In My Head: The Days That Follow A Breakup”

  1. Well M, of course you are going to miss him and go through all of these feelings. That’s the price of letting him know you did not wish to keep having the affair. He could leave if he really wanted to. Until he does, I say he does not want to. And yes, you have had some great growth!! ❤

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Even if he wanted to, he won’t. There are just too many reasons to stay in his life. Thousands of really good reasons. I would have a hard time if I was him too and that’s the truth. It’s much easier to solve for love and sex than an entire life. So I’m sure that’s what he will keep doing.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Wow. You have been very strong – congrats. You have recognized that you deserve more – congrats. Questioning his declarations of love & commitment are perfectly reasonable. Perhaps he wants to believe them, but until he takes action, those words are meaningless. I think flashes of anger with numbness are just your mind processing all this. Stay strong. Rest. I hope you find some peace. Hugs as always.

    Liked by 3 people

  3. A few things to perhaps re-frame.

    His declarations of love weren’t lies or meaningless. He believed what he told you. He can be in love with you and not be able to move his life forward. Happens ALL THE TIME. While I understand it causes you to wonder about things which happened and were said, don’t throw it all out.

    Sometimes, just sometimes, people respect when you ask them to leave you be. They believe you when you tell them you can’t do it anymore. That he is / was respecting your ask for silence isn’t a bad thing. However is seems that you want him to not respect that. You want him to “fight” even though you asked him not to.

    When I told Tony I couldn’t talk to him anymore, two summers ago, he respected that. It killed him – he thought of me every day and ached to know how I was. He missed me like crazy. But he believed what I told him and acted on it. It was months before he reached out. It didn’t mean he didn’t love me, or miss me. It just meant he did what I asked.

    So just consider.

    Liked by 5 people

    1. I always like how you reframe and I do try and sometimes just don’t get there. He does love me and he is not going to change. I hate being a cliche.
      He said I needed to know that he loves me even when he doesn’t call and that he’s not calling because he loves me and I need to heal from the damage he’s done. Hearing it from him helped. I now need to convince myself of that.


      1. Yes. I shouldn’t need it. The weird thing this time is I could reach out to him anytime and get tons of reinforcement (what I couldn’t get last year) and now I have to rely on myself not to do it. I didn’t realize how much harder it is to have to own up to myself.

        Liked by 1 person

  4. Hugs from afar. And yes maybe this is the kick in the ass he needs. But I would not hold your breath for him to change his situation anytime soon. No need to drive yourself crazy anymore with thoughts of him doing that. I’m proud of you for standing up for yourself and what you know you need. I know from experience the what if’s thoughts can haunt sometimes, but they will become fewer and fewer as you grow stronger and don’t settle for less than what you want and deserve.

    Liked by 2 people

  5. Do NOT give in, Madeline! You are doing absolutely great, all the feels and emotions are right on target, and so just plow through them, girl. It will not be a kick in the ass for him, because he is HAPPY with what he has! He’s got it all – a wife who will stay no matter what, offspring who no doubt think “dad’s the greatest” and a little somethin’ somethin’ he loves on the side.

    I don’t mean to demean or belittle what you had with Bennett. However, men like him will never leave their wives, nor ever change. Why should they? The fact that he called twice in one short time span says to me that he does miss and desire you – but here is where YOU call the shots. Do you forever want to be THAT woman? Or do you want to be someone’s ONLY woman? It’s not up to any of us to decide or judge you, just respectfully give advice and opinions.

    I for one, can see that you’ve come so far and matured emotionally. You are different in your thinking about what you want for yourself now. So ask yourself the age-old question: would you (your life) be better with him or without him? I’m thinking of you this week…

    Liked by 2 people

    1. That’s just it, I have to get through the emotions and the pain – you are right. I’m. It giving in even if I was a little bit weak. It felt god d to know he’s broken as sick as that sounds. But, yes, I want to be the ONE woman. Period. I’m sure. And that’s what must keep me strong.
      Thanks for thinking I grew up a little because right now it doesn’t feel like I did by making the same bad decisions I did last year.
      Thank you

      Liked by 1 person

  6. Are you wanting him to call and text, after telling him you didn’t? While five days may seem like a long time when you’ve been in touch with him daily for so long, it really isn’t time enough for you to process things and move on. I’m wondering why he is contacting you so soon and why you are texting him back to acknowledge his calls. That sort of behavior will just end up putting you both right back into the situation (in my humble opinion). That might work for Bennett, as he’ll have both his wife, family, marriage and his mistress — but how is that healthy for you? Did I miss something earlier? Were you going to stay in contact after all?

    Liked by 6 people

    1. Hi Jana – yes, I do want him to…but then I don’t. I know that makes no sense. I know I haven’t processed anything because it doesn’t hurt enough just yet. He would take me if I allowed him. But I would only be a monster being frustrated and demanding and I don’t want that for either of us. It’s just my head and heart fighting.

      No, there was/is no intention to stay in contact but yes, I couldn’t believe he wouldn’t. I know there is no logic in that.


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