We all must have gone through a break-up at least once. It might feel hard to move on with your life without someone you have been in a romantic relationship with.
Recent research has shown that reminiscence of someone that broke up with you, might trigger sensations similar to “real” physical pain.
Break-up is a big emotional part of our lives that might trigger several emotions at the same time including anger and hatred. More than the person, the memories they left might make you feel even worse.
The director of cognitive neuroscience at Columbia University explains that if a person who has gone through a break-up says they feel pain about their breakup, do not trivialize it. We all must understand that this can be real and let’s look for the right therapeutic approach. He also explains that feelings of rejection can sustain longer than anger! This article will explain how your brain actually feels when you go through a break-up?
1) The feeling of Addiction
Psychologist Art Aron, neurologist Lucy Brown, and anthropologist Helen Fisher conducted a study that included individuals who were deeply in love. Most of them were still trying to get back to their partners and some of them were feeling depressed. In this study, the individuals were allowed to view the images of their ex-partners and parts of their brain including ventral tegmental (VTA), nucleus accumbens, and the ventral striatum were scanned. These regions were associated with “motivation and goal-oriented behavior” and communicate by releasing dopamine. It is involved in drug addiction and obsessive stages of love.
Therefore, when you break-up, you might want to get back to your ex-partner just like the way you crave a drug.
2) The Feelings Might Be Similar to a Physical Pain
Around 40 individuals who felt extremely rejected were analyzed from New York City. They were allowed to look at different pictures including pictures of their close friends(to trigger positive thoughts) and pictures of their ex-partners(to trigger thoughts about their breakup) and their brains were scanned in both cases. Researchers concluded that the same regions of the brain that were found lit up while experiencing physical pain got activated while looking at the pictures of their ex-partners. These regions were not active when they looked at their friend’s pictures. The study concluded that certain brain regions were lit up when they felt either physical or emotional pain.
How to Get over Your Break-Up?
- Take a day-off, give yourself a good cry, sleep all day, and spend some ‘me’ time.
- If you do not feel good, reach out to your close friend or family member and share your feelings.
- Distract yourself by doing something you like. It might be watching a movie, going out, or cooking your favorite dish.
- Delete all their photos and videos and try not to look at their profiles on social media platforms.
- Always remember “this too shall pass”
- If you are not sure of getting over your feelings of depression and anxiety, you must consult a Psychiatrist.