When a friend tells you her relationship with a partner is over, one of the few statements that come to mind is “Thank God you’re single again!” “He wasn’t good enough for you anyway”, “I was always suspicious of that guy” or, “I told you so!”. All those things could be true, however, this may be the wrongest time to voice those thoughts.
Research shows that the levels of dopamine and serotonin are most likely to drop after a breakup, and that could result in depression, overwhelming sadness, anxiety, and even confusion. So, if you want to support your friend through such a delicate moment in her life, it’s best to choose your words wisely.
I know you care about your friend, and sometimes, it’s very challenging knowing what to say when a friend is down. Well, that’s why I’m here to help. Below are 21 different ways to support and respond to your friend right after a breakup.
- 1 21 Supportive Things To Tell A Friend After A Breakup
- 1.1 1. I’m here for you
- 1.2 2. Hey, you’ll get through this
- 1.3 3. You’re strong, beautiful, and mature
- 1.4 4. I am so sorry
- 1.5 5. There’s nothing wrong with you
- 1.6 6. You’re allowed to be sad
- 1.7 7. I’m listening
- 1.8 8. It won’t always hurt like this
- 1.9 9. Want some ice cream?
- 1.10 10. Alright, it’s time for you to get your life!
- 1.11 11. It’s time for some revenge!!
- 1.12 12. These things happen
- 1.13 13. What can I do?
- 1.14 14. Hey, it’s his loss
- 1.15 15. If you need to cry all night, I’ll be here handing you tissues
- 1.16 16. Do you need me to key his car?
- 1.17 17. I can only imagine how you feel
- 1.18 18. I promise you, they’ll be light at the end of this tunnel
- 1.19 19. Don’t give up on love
- 1.20 20. I love you, your family loves you because you’re an amazing person
- 1.21 21. Say nothing
- 2 FAQs
- 3 Conclusion
21 Supportive Things To Tell A Friend After A Breakup
1. I’m here for you
Saying this after a breakup may seem cliche and obvious, but that’s the thing, it’s more of a formality. Before you gasp in shock, hear me out. After saying something like this, it’s more important what you do. If she’s been dating this guy for more than six months or a year, she’ll certainly be feeling extremely terrible.
At this moment, your friend needs a shoulder to cry on, someone to hold her while she sobs, and listening ears that will let her rant. So, instead of giving a long speech about how she could do better, just say this, and mean it.
2. Hey, you’ll get through this
Look your friend in the eyes, hold her hand, and say those words above. It needs to be re-assuring enough because the truth is, she needs all the encouragement she can get. To some people, having romantic relationships define who they are, and so when that’s gone, all lines look blurry to them.
Telling them that they will get through it, even though they don’t have a romantic partner anymore might just help them have a little hope, even though their relationship is truly over.
3. You’re strong, beautiful, and mature
There are some things people don’t want to hear, especially after the love of their life just broke up with them. They won’t want to hear about how awesome they are, because if they were that amazing, then why are they trying to heal from a breakup?
Well, even though they feel they don’t need to hear about that and would rather just find ways to get back with their ex, tell them anyway.
By adding the ‘mature’ part, you’re subtly reminding them not to overreact because of the heartbreak, and remember who they are, even though their relationship is over.
4. I am so sorry
It’s best to say this, then hug them as tightly as you can. You’re sorry that their relationship ended, sorry that things didn’t work out, sorry that she feels horrible, and also sorry that relationships have to be so complicated. Saying you’re sorry shows that you empathize with your friend, and it’s the best thing to say when you’ve got nothing else.
5. There’s nothing wrong with you
Your friend may be dwelling on the fact that her ex broke up with her, and if there was really no significant problem, she’ll be wondering why? Even though she did do something, she’ll be confused about why her ex didn’t try to save the relationship and chose to end it instead. That’s why it’s up to you to stop her from getting any funny ideas about herself.
Remind her that she’s lovely, beautiful, strong, and helpful, and maybe her partner is as well. However, in life, just because two people seem like they’re meant for each other, it doesn’t mean that they are.
6. You’re allowed to be sad
You might be tempted to tell her not to shed a tear over this guy, but as long as they had been dating for some time, her feelings are valid. A breakup may be a good and necessary thing at times, but that doesn’t make it any easier to deal with. So, don’t think she wants you to go bad cop on her right now.
Let her know that you understand how much the relationship meant to her and that it’s okay for her to feel ‘horrible’. If you can, before heading to her place, buy a bag of chips, ice cream, or some other comfort food you know she’ll like. Then after saying this, offer it to her reassuringly, and listen to her while she vents.
7. I’m listening
Talking about listening, you don’t want to be that friend that’s dishing out advice left, right, and center after a breakup. Your friend has valid feelings, and she may be hurting sore at the moment. You have to look her in the eyes and let her know that you hear her, and are willing to keep listening.
It’s important to make an effort to hear everything she’s saying, that’s the only way you’ll truly know how to respond. Plus, it’s a great way to get someone who bottles up their feelings to actually voice out their thoughts and kickstart their healing process.
8. It won’t always hurt like this
Your friend may feel she’s at the worst point in her life, and if care is not taken, depression will set in quite fast. The longer she cries and vents about her broken relationship, the longer she’ll feel drowned by its effects.
You have to try and help her out of the loop by reminding her that even though she’s hurting so bad right now, there’ll be better days. All she’s seeing now may seem black, but you’ll be there all the way until she starts to see the vibrant colors again.
9. Want some ice cream?
Before saying this, there should already be a bowl nearby, either one you brought over or one in her fridge. This article on the Huffington Post gives a little insight into why people turn to ice cream after a breakup, so offering it may actually help a lot. If your friend is one of the many women who turn to ice cream when they are feeling down, it may help her feel better.
However, it’s crucial that you don’t offer it if you’re not planning to take a few scoops yourself. Remember, misery likes company, and except you gluten or lactose-intolerant, then share a few scoops with her as she talks about her sorrows.
10. Alright, it’s time for you to get your life!
Okay, so this may seem like a really odd thing to say when someone is dealing with a breakup. It’s actually not, especially a few days after when you’re trying to cheer her up. Maybe you just invited her to a party or hang out with friends and she declines because she’s still pining over her ex, that’s when you say this.
She needs to remember that even though it’s okay to take her time to heal and get over the breakup, that will not happen if she closes herself off to the world. So, go on and invite her to hang out at a fun place and encourage her to be unafraid or unreluctant to continue living her life.
11. It’s time for some revenge!!
You shouldn’t say this a few hours after her relationship has ended. Wait a few days or even a week before suggesting that it’s time to get some revenge. Now, by revenge, I don’t mean pranking her ex or doing anything bad to him. Remember, the perfect revenge is a success, so encourage her to do something empowering.
It could be getting a new look, hitting the gym, taking a class or exam she always wanted, or something like that.
12. These things happen
After a breakup, your friend may feel alone, tired, depressed, and maybe even foolish. That’s why it’s important to remind her that breakups happen, and she’s not the only one going through this right now. It’s a part of life, and while it’s hard and painful to accept, she’s strong enough to get through it.
13. What can I do?
This is so important, because most times, we assume we know what a friend who’s hurting wants when we really don’t. Rather than assuming and texting her folks, or calling the guy, ask her first. You can go on to help her arrange her things if she’s not had the strength to tidy up or even cook. Just try to be as helpful as possible, but ask her first.
14. Hey, it’s his loss
Now, you shouldn’t say this if you think she won’t want to hear it, but this usually cheers a lot of ladies up, momentarily. If you make them feel like the guy’s the one who is losing out the most, it may boost their self-esteem, and make them feel better about the breakup.
15. If you need to cry all night, I’ll be here handing you tissues
This statement can go two ways, it’s either the concluding statement after you’ve shown your friend some tough love or a reassuring statement telling her you’ll be there for her. If it’s the former, then your tone should be more serious so she’ll know it’s time to dry her tears, and probably have something to eat.
However, if it’s the latter, then say it calmly with a reassuring hand on her shoulders. She needs to know that you’re not going anywhere, and you’ll be there all night if you need to.
16. Do you need me to key his car?
Lol! So this may sound extreme, and you totally shouldn’t go through with it even though your friend gives you the go-ahead. This statement should totally be used as comic relief, and hopefully, it lightens up the mood a bit.
However, it’s important you study her mood before saying this, if she’s practically balling her eyes out and saying mean things about her ex, don’t bring it up. But, if she’s a bit calm and still rational, pop it in, smile at her, wait for her to smile back then hug her.
17. I can only imagine how you feel
A lot of people assume they know how others feel when they are going through something. However, just because you have gone through a breakup before doesn’t mean you can totally relate. That’s because every relationship is different, the duration, the feelings, commitments, or even sacrifices made are quite different.
The reason your friend may seem so hung up is because of the promises her ex made to her. So, at this point, she really doesn’t want to hear about how much you can relate, so don’t say that.
Make her feel important by letting her know you can’t possibly relate to what she’s going through, then right after, let her know you’re there for her, and regardless of how she feels now, things will get better.
18. I promise you, they’ll be light at the end of this tunnel
Misery loves company, that’s one of the reasons why your friend may be saying the most negative things right now. Instead of scolding her right away, hold her hands, look into her eyes, and say those words above. She’ll probably shrug you off, but it’s important she hears it.
Here’s the thing about words, even when you think they don’t make a difference, they have a way of resonating in the ears of the listener. So, she may keep talking about the breakup and even bad-mouthing her partner, but try not to indulge her. In the next few days, she may see reason and start thinking like you as well.
19. Don’t give up on love
This would be the perfect response to a painful outburst like, “love sucks,” or, “I never want to love again.” Your friend could make such statements because this relationship has ended, but that doesn't mean she won’t find a better partner in the future.
Now, while you shouldn’t tell her about finding someone else right now, you can calmly tell her that she’ll certainly live to love again. The lines may seem blurry now, and all hope seems lost, but one day, she’ll wake up and realize it doesn’t hurt so bad anymore.
20. I love you, your family loves you because you’re an amazing person
After a breakup, a lot of people feel that all hope is lost. They aren’t thinking about their other perfect relationships, be it work or family-related, they’re just focusing on their ex. Now is the time to remind her that she has people around her that love her immensely. That won’t bring back her partner, or even fix the relationship.
However, it will remind her that she has a supportive band of friends and family who love her and want her to feel better.
21. Say nothing
The way one person reacts to a breakup isn’t the same way another person would. If your friend's marriage just ended, saying something like, “It will all be fine”, won’t cut it. Most people don’t enter into relationships with the thought that it will end in a breakup, so the healing process would be harder in such cases.
So rather than say anything that would aggravate your friend, be silent, hug her, kiss her forehead and snuggle with her when she falls asleep.
At this point in time, if you’ve been the dominant friend, it’s time to step back and be supportive. First of all, let her cry it out for as long as she has to, and get her things you think would help, like ice cream. Get flowers delivered to her place, try to take her out bowling, or even to a theme park to have fun.
Don’t take her to places that won’t lift her spirits, and it’s also best to avoid bars and clubs, so she doesn’t get drunk and regret anything the next day.
Most women succumb to revenge-texting or getting that revenge-body after a breakup. The idea is to take pictures that make them look like they are over it just to spite their ex. They may also want to hit the gym and work extra-hard at their jobs as well just so they’ll look amazingly gorgeous when they meet their exes again.
It’s important not to trivialize what they are going through and don’t make them feel weak or stupid for feeling bad. Don’t assume you know how they feel either, give them time to talk about their feelings, and just listen, don’t advise unless they ask you to.
If you can, help them with cooking, cleaning, and other tasks until they feel better. But after about a week of continuous sulking, you have to encourage your friend to embrace what has happened and start healing from it.
Trying to calm someone down over the phone is more challenging than doing it in person. So, it’s important to start out by listening to them for as long as possible while assuring them that you understand, and their feelings are valid.
Follow up by telling them how much you love and cherish them, and wish you were there to comfort them in person. If you can make it over to their place the next day, calmly reassure them that you’ll be coming over bearing gifts, and they should try to cheer up until you get there.
First of all, it’s important to breathe and calm yourself down before giving a response. If they are serious about their decision, respect it and don’t try to get them to change their minds. If you don’t want things to end, calmly state that by saying, “ I still think we can work this out, and I still care about you very much, but I can’t force you to stay and I respect your decision.”
Being the shoulder to cry on is not an easy job, but with the tips above, I’m sure you’ll feel much better handling things now. Was this list helpful? If it was, kindly leave a comment below and share this article with others who may need it.
As hopeless romantic I struggled tremendously in my love life. After many years of searching, trial & error, and countless failed relationships, I finally found my Mr. Right. It wasn't an easy road, but one that has taught me an incredible amount about the workings of relationships between men and women, and this is what I hope to share through my writing on this blog.