The Ex Factor: How Your Friends Help You Survive a Breakup

Six months from now, when you are in a completely different emotional space (if not already in a better relationship), you'll want to look back on this time and feel good about the way you behaved with the people around you. You won't want visions of Lily Taylor singing "Joe Lies" and bumming out everyone at the party while her friends exchange uncomfortable glances. (If you haven't seen Cameron Crowe's film Say Anything, run, don't walk, to the video store. But don't wait for your ex to show up on your lawn with a boom box '- it's just a movie.)

We know... your friends are always supposed to be there, but for the love of God, give them a break and stop talking about your ex for one minute! We all have those tapes that play in our head '- what are they called? Oh yeah, thoughts. But some of them are meant just for you. You don't have to share every single one of them. In fact, stop listening to yourself! If you pay attention to your negative thoughts, you're only affirming their validity. Those thoughts are like a bratty child '- if you pay attention to the bad behavior, it only encourages a bigger tantrum. We say this with the greatest measure of love and empathy, but take a step back and try to understand why you need to make a conscious effort not to subject your friends to endless questions, endless tears, and endless analysis during this time. It's one thing to get dumped by a guy, but it's another to get dumped by your friends, because they won't even have breakup sex with you.

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