Not even 24 hours after our tearful break-up, my ex was spotted flirting with someone else.
“Um, isn’t this your guy?” my friend texted, sending me a screenshot of the evidence. The dude couldn’t even wait a full business day to get back out there?! Ugh, it totally wrecked me.
After our final good-bye convo, I pictured myself spending time self-reflecting. I’d dip into two or three emotional pizzas, sign up for my first yoga class, and slowly realise some truths that would make the memories of my ex fade and my single, confident vibes grow.
It would be so tragic, so emo, so beautiful!
But cool, my ex would be spending this time grabbing drinks with hot dates. I immediately felt like kindred spirits with Ariana Grande, Anna Faris, Miranda Lambert, and all the other women who have watched their exes move on to new relationships faster than they could sign them out of their Hulu accounts. Like, why??? Why do half of all women take up to three months to get over a breakup, while men just…seem fine right away?
Because guys have been socialised not to take heartbreak hard, explains Jordan Madison, a licensed marriage therapist. Sure, some may talk about it while shooting hoops with their friends or sulk alone on their couches, but most tend to follow the “man up” advice they’ve been fed since childhood. To preserve their egos, they move on to the next so fast that no one notices they’ve been burned.
On the flip side, women are usually urged to let it all out. (Picture a post-Warner Elle Woods with mascara tears running down her face.) Society has reinforced that expressing our feelings is our forte. “We’re given the time to mourn, cry, and process our emotions,” explains Madison.
So wait, should we feel kind of... sorry for guys? Their surface-level fix def isn’t doing them any favors, says Jeannie Assimos, chief of advice at eHarmony. “Men are more likely to rebound with another woman, but it’s not because they didn’t love you. It’s because they think it will help them get over you.” And (attention: men) it probably won’t.
Another 2015 study by Binghamton University and University College London found that while women report higher levels of emotional and physical pain after a breakup, they actually have an overall easier time recovering.“Men, on the other hand, never fully do – they simply move on,” wrote the study authors. (And guess who gets to deal with that baggage?Yep, their rebounds!)
I’m still stewing over my ex replacing me so easily. But if science says it’s better to admit that than suppress it, my pizza and I are gonna be just fine.
QQ:Guys, do you honestly think you move on too fast?
“After a breakup, I want to be distracted immediately and validate my ego by going on dates. That being said, my first major girlfriend still crosses my mind every couple of months – and that was almost 10 years ago.”
“I definitely didn’t process the breakup faster than my last female ex. It took me about a year or so to get over it. To me, there’s a part of me that never truly lets go of a breakup.”
“As an extrovert, I’ll rebound pretty quickly. That said, it’s taken me a lot of work in therapy to actually feel like I’ve ‘gotten over’ serious breakups, learned from them, and moved on healthily.”