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Staying healthy through relationship breakup

Staying healthy through relationship breakup

When faced with the end of your marriage or long-term relationship, you’re likely to experience a rollercoaster of emotions. Whether the breakup was instigated by you, or your partner, the future may still be daunting. And if you didn’t expect the relationship to end, then the situation is likely to conjure up a mix of emotions for you.  Some days you may feel hopeful and maybe even relieved if your relationship had been difficult for a long time. On other days you may feel sad, angry, confused and anxious.  And for some, alcohol is an easy route through the heartache and stress.

Drinking to forget, or drinking out of frustration or stress can be the result of a traumatic experience. When people exhibit this kind of behaviour, it means they’re not able to properly deal with their emotions. Alcohol can be all too easy to turn to when you’re feeling down, and it certainly doesn’t come without its risks. It’s a quick fix — and you might feel better. But not for long.

Drinking after a breakup can increase your chances of doing things you might not want to do, whether it's calling your ex, engaging in risky sexual behaviours or getting into a fight. Even when you've started to finally feel OK post-relationship, a text from an ex can release a flurry of emotions and its important to deal with them properly.

If you feel like you’re starting to spiral out of control, seek help from someone you trust - talking is the best way to prevent isolation and help maintain perspective. You're not alone and sharing your heartaches and victories with a trusted friend, family member or neighbour will help to carry you along.

Realising you have a problem with alcohol is the first big step to getting help.

You may need help if:

  • you often feel the need to have a drink 
  • you get into trouble because of your drinking
  • other people warn you about how much you're drinking
  • you think your drinking is causing you problems


A good place to start is with your GP. Try to be accurate and honest about how much you drink and any problems it may be causing you.

If you have become dependent on alcohol, you will have found it difficult to fully control your drinking in some way. You'll probably need some help either to cut down and control your drinking or stop completely, and also some plans to maintain the improvement after that.

Your GP may suggest different types of assessment and support options available to you, such as from local community alcohol services. You can also ask about any free local support groups and other alcohol counselling that may suit you or you may seek to receive your counselling or treatment privately.

Contact us on 0345 06 121 12 if you want to find out more about how we can help if your drinking is becoming a problem.