The last breakup I went through was a little over a month ago. The man in question and I had only been seeing one another for about a month, but it was an intense month. Things moved quickly, promises were made, and then one day, out of the blue, he sent me a text telling me he didn’t think we should see one another anymore. I took a car to his apartment to talk things through, and then when that was over, I walked the mile and a half back to my apartment, sobbing the entire way.
It was nighttime, but I kept my sunglasses on to try to hide my tears. I alternated between listening to Leonard Cohen on my headphones and wailing to my mother. I couldn’t give less of a shit that I was in public—and the fact that I live in Brooklyn meant that no one gave me a second glance as I stumbled down the street sobbing.
By the time I got back to my apartment, I felt exhausted, but emotionally cleansed. It was bonkers. I’d basically done the crying version of Cersei’s walk of atonement in Game of Thrones. It was then that I realized that there were much better places to cry post-breakup than curled up in the fetal position in your bed. So I’ve rounded them up for you. You can thank me the next time you find yourself sobbing and relocate yourself in front of a mirror. Trust me—that one’s a goodie.
Walking Down The Street With Your Sunglasses On
The beauty about walking down the street, crying your eyes out, is that you’re completely alone without being completely alone. It’s insanely cinematic, too—especially if you pop your headphones on and cue up your sad girl playlist. There’s nothing to make you want to sob until you’re dehydrated than the soundtrack to Call Me By Your Name. Sunglasses are optional, but highly recommended—even if it’s dark out. They’re especially necessary if, like me, you look less like that GIF of Lauren Conrad weeping black tears when you cry and more like a seal with an eel up its nose.
And in all seriousness, there’s something rejuvenating about a long walk when you’re processing shit. Maybe it’s the endorphins. Maybe it’s the experience of walking away from your pain. Whatever it is, I rank a long walk as the best place to cry post-breakup. Try it.
It is satisfyingly masochistic to watch yourself ugly cry in your bathroom mirror. Your emotions are on display, and they are hideous.
On The Kitchen Floor
This was one I didn’t really get to experience until I moved out of my studio apartment and into a place with a more open floor plan. But damn, why does it feel so good to collapse on to the floor in the fetal position and just cry it the fuck out? Like wrap your arms around your knees and heave the tears out. Shudder! Shake! That’s why you’re on the floor!
This only works in the kitchen, and sometimes the bathroom, depending on how clean you are. There’s something about that cold floor that just turns your eyes to leaky faucets. I like to think it’s a physical manifestation of how low you’re feeling emotionally. The bonus of this? I have never laid down on my kitchen floor and not spotted a pea rolled under my cabinets, or some dust that needed sweeping. Now you have a cleanup project to distract you from your tears. Hooray!
Standing In Front Of A Mirror
If you’re sitting here reading this story and telling me that you’ve never walked over to a mirror in the middle of a hysterical fit and watched yourself cry, you are a damn liar. Everyone does this. There is no shame in that game. It is satisfyingly masochistic to watch yourself ugly cry in your bathroom mirror. Your emotions are on display, and they are hideous. But damn if it doesn’t feel incredible.
The best is, though, when you get so sad that you start giving yourself a literal pep talk in the mirror while you’re still crying. “Your feelings are valid!” you wail to your reflection, snot running down your nose. “If you love something, let it go!” Clutch the sink, bow your head over the faucet, and sob it out, boo. And then look at your red, splotchy face in that mirror. You and your reflection will make it through this together.
In The Shower, Sitting On The Floor
The shower itself is a fantastic place to mourn. But once you sit down on that floor with your head between your knees, it becomes a whole new experience. It’s somewhat cleansing, what with the water running over you. You’re not 100 percent sure of where the tears end and the shower stream begins. But you do know that you can snot rocket and no one will be the wiser.
You’re stripped down in the shower physically, which makes it easier to go raw emotionally. And, in truth, the shower is where we traditionally go when things are feeling shitty. Hungover as hell? Sit on the floor of the shower. Have a headache that could take down a bear? Get in the shower, dude! It’s a comforting place for a reason. Bonus points if you take a shower wine in with you for your sob sesh.
In The Bathroom At Work
We can’t control our emotions, so sometimes, we break down in less-than-ideal spots. Case-in-point? The work bathroom sob sesh. It’s equally mortifying and satisfying, a one-two-punch of emotional masochism that will get you through the rest of the day.
This has to be an abbreviated cry. A stealth cry, if you will. This cry has a time limit—seven minutes or less. And aside from a few sniffles here and there, it has to be completely silent. I’m talking gasps instead of sobs, and a lot of deep breathing. And once you’re done, you’ve got to pull your shit together and get back outside. But once you’ve mastered the bathroom-at-work cry, you can basically pull off a good breakdown just about anywhere. So go out there and get it out.