Column: Learning to be Single

Column: Learning to be Single

by Jessica Volpe, News Correspondent

My summer was supposed to be wonderful. I moved to Elmwood Park, N.J., to be closer to my significant other, got an internship doing public relations work, and used my free time to relax and work on my tan. But my fantasy summer only lasted a few weeks before my boyfriend told me to move out of the apartment we shared.

I scrambled to find a place to live and picked up extra shifts at my job to afford my newly-increased rent.  As if being freshly single isn’t hard enough as it is, I am in an unfamiliar place until my internship ends in August and I’ve had to make new friends since all of my friends reside in Boston. Friends warned me not to move, because my relationship had been on–and–off for years, and I now wish I had listened to them. I’m trying to make the best of the situation, move on from my relationship and stay positive while trying to maintain some sort of social life. I’m learning to be single.

Being single in the summer is supposed to be the thing that most 20-somethings are dying to do. You can go to the beach, Red Sox games, bars– places with where there is are unlimited supplies of scantily clad prospects looking to just have a summer fling. So what are you supposed to do when you find yourself single during the summer in a new place? It can be fun and exciting to be on your own and independent, but sometimes, when you get home late at night from work to an empty apartment, you realize just how alone you actually are.

When friends and family surround you after a break up, it is easy to distract yourself from feeling sudden pangs of sadness. Learning to deal with the pain on your own can be very difficult, but empowering. I found the best way for me to deal with the break up was to put all of my energy in to something constructive and positive:  any time I’m feeling down or lonely, I go out for a run. Not only does running generally make me feel better because of the endorphins released in my body, I can also kill two birds with one stone and get that beach body I want.

In the age of cell phones and Facebook, part of learning how to deal with a break up involves the dilemma of text messaging and “checking up” on exes via Facebook. Is it healthy to see what your exes are up to on Facebook? Are they happier without you? Did they put up those pictures of them with other girls to purposely make you mad? In order to solve the Facebook dilemma, I deleted my ex from my friends list.
After dealing with my share of break–ups, I can honestly say the healthiest thing for me to do is completely cut ties with the ex, unless, for some reason,the break up is amicable.

The best thing to do is stay busy, surround yourself with supportive people and take it one day at a time. There are definitely days when I feel sad. Sometimes it just helps to call friends and talk. They remind me I was unhappy and not acting like myself, and that this breakup is really the best thing that could have happened to me.

Being from the Carrie Bradshaw school of thought, I believe that whether you are on your continuing search for Mr. Big or simply enjoying being single, remember that, in the words of Ms. Bradshaw herself,  “No matter who broke your heart, or how long it takes to heal, you will never get through it without your friends.” While you’re busy trying to focus on yourself and making yourself happy, you might just find that someone new and unexpected will come in to your life.  And that’s the best part of being single again, isn’t it?

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