Breakup Help! When Should I Block My Ex From Social Media?
When people come to me for help with a breakup, they always ask, “when should I block my ex from social media?”
Notice, the question is not if, it’s when. In order to heal from a breakup, both sides need to stop all communication. But when? Breakups are often messy, unnecessarily of course but hey, we’re human! Of course it’s difficult to just cut things off.
Understanding the phases of a breakup is important.
Phase 1: The initial breakup conversation.
We all have been through breakups. Some of us are usually being broken up with more than doing the breaking up (a key indicator of codependency). There’s the initial conversation where someone says the relationship isn’t working for them and they have decided to move on.
It’s often a long, tearful and dramatic conversation. There may even be fighting and all sorts of resistance. Eventually there’s nothing left to discuss. Both people are exhausted and phase 1 is complete. They physically leave one another but things aren’t actually over.
Phase 2: Negotiating, convincing and more blame.
One person wants to work it out, so they text or call saying they want to talk. Since the person who ended the relationship is also feeling sad, and guilty they feel obligated to have this subsequent conversation.
This is a mistake.
Once the decision to breakup has been made, entertaining any other communication other than logistics to pick up one’s belongings (or have them shipped if able), is unnecessary and actually cruel to the heartbroken who still has hope. Messing with someone’s hope to soothe guilt from ending is weak.
Once it is made clear that there is no interest or desire in working on the relationship, that the feelings are no longer the same as they once were, and potentially blame and judgement are given, it’s time for the next phase.
Phase 3: Block the now ex from all social media.
This is where things get heavy. Before social media, we didn’t have the ability to keep up with our exes and see their new lives unfold. We may have done crazy post break up things like drive by their work or home, show up where we thought they would be, write letters, leave voice messages, send emails, etcetera.
The problem now, is that there’s a whole other visual level that we need to cut off in order to heal.
Why is it so difficult to block an ex from social media?
It is incredibly difficult to block an ex from social media because people just want to know why they were rejected?
If they’re narcissistic they want to control that other person so they hover over them and if they don’t find anyone new to provide narcissistic supply to them in the form of attention and adoration, they stalk social media and then strike with contacting again.
If they’re codependent, their identity is caught up within the other person. They don’t know who they are without them. They lacked the self love and self worth during the relationship (which is probably why it ended) and so despite knowing it isn’t good for them, they go on their social media to see what their ex is doing.
Stalking your ex on social media after a breakup is a form of self-torture.
It’s usually the first thing I advise my clients to do and it takes them time to actually do it which always leads to further contact, drama and healing regression.
Self-loving people put their well-being first and confidently decide to cut off all access to anyone who doesn’t want them. Codependent people seek love externally. So until they are able to master their own self soothing and get to the root of why they are codependent and have such a need to control, they’ll feel as if they are coming off a drug. That drug being their ex.
So yes, you need to quit. You need to get support, accept the fact that the relationship is over, make arrangements to get your belongings as soon as possible and get on with your healing, undisturbed.
Continuing to keep tabs on an ex through social media leads to anxiety and prolongs the healing process.
It takes the energy off of personal well-being and puts it onto obsessing over what their ex is doing. It also leaves the door slightly open showing that you still have hope.
Holding on to an ex via social media can be emotionally destructive especially when the partner starts posting pictures of their new romantic interest, or simply enjoying their life.
They can post a picture of themselves alone, lounging at their pool reading a book and it will set off a trigger. This is why a Post Breakup Detox is necessary and it cannot be done alone.
Consider a Post Breakup Detox.
Most people cannot get through breakups alone. Even if they don’t seek therapy, counseling or coaching, they lean on friends, family members, their hair stylist, manicurist, pretty much anyone who will listen to their same story.
These people don’t really know how to provide the ongoing support and healing momentum that is necessary.
Some friends and family may even kick us while we’re down and say how they knew all along that our ex wasn’t for us urging us to just get over it.
They may even try to set you up or invite you out to celebrate your new found freedom. Meanwhile, your stomach is in knots, you can’t sleep, and all you do is ruminate about what you could have done better or different to be the right person for your ex.
Then you go look at their social media. It makes you nuts. It’s maddening.
You’ll heal quicker and transform with support.
When someone decides to do a post breakup detox, they are essentially putting themselves first and are committing to their own healing.
When I did my own Post Divorce Detox back in late 2015, I decided not to date anyone, to set a curfew of 10pm weeknights and midnight on the weekends, go to the gym daily and the beach.
This Detox style healing process grounded me. I would meet friends for dinner and when they continued on with their evenings I’d head home by 10pm and listen to Abraham Hicks.
My self-care was my top commitment. I had men approach me and ask me out and I’d politely tell them give me a few months. I’m not dating anyone but myself. That in itself was a big win! Saying I was committed to my healing and not looking for soothing outside of myself was huge.
Many nights I just wanted to read self-help books, study up on things like trauma healing, narcissism, codependency, inner child work, neuroscience, attachment styles and loads more. I became a student of myself and I went all in, investing time and money into my healing.
Take self loving action and send a message to the universe.
So if you’re up at 3am on your phone Googling for answers and came across this blog article and know you need to block your ex on social media but can’t, find yourself crying, feeling awful and unable to focus at work, reach out to me because there’s a huge opportunity to heal something far bigger than your breakup.
Your breakup and inability to let go is a symptom of codependency and luckily with support, you can get to the root cause of it, shift it and radically transform how you show up in relationships forever more. I did it. So can you. It will kick your ass but you’ll change your life.
Do yourself a huge favor and block your ex. Eventually when fully healed, if you feel you truly want to friend them again, you can. Heal yourself first.