12/12/2011 03:06 pm ET | Updated Feb 11, 2012

Letter To A Friend: How To Get Over A Breakup

Breakups are never easy ... and even though you survived your first one a few years ago, for some reason, it doesn't get "easier" the next time it happens ... it's just different. You hurt just the same. In fact, the magnitude may feel even greater. Your heart feels like it's been shattered into a million pieces and you just don't know how to fix it. Your cries are all-consuming, like convulsive body earthquakes. But as you know, time heals, distance makes it easier and eventually your weeps will turn into delicate tears and those tears will eventually turn into a nostalgic memory.

I am proud of you. It takes a lot of strength to do the right thing -- for yourself and for the other person. Our emotions can overrule us, and it is the easier route to fall into what just "feels good" at the time instead of doing what is ultimately healthy and positive in the long run.

To me, a breakup is very similar to the different stages of mourning someone's death. You go through a roller coaster of emotions. First, there is sadness, loneliness and a whole lot of missing your ex. You will doubt your decision and make justifications. Then comes denial. At this point, you will probably attempt to establish relations again. This part is very tricky. Most attempt this because the attachment is still so powerful -- but be aware that it can prolong the healing and "getting over" process. Anger will probably be another stage, where you resent the other person, recount only the bad memories, the fights, and feel victimized. There will be a lot of blame here, and a feeling that life is unfair. Then it circles back again to sadness, where you think you'll never open your heart again. You will tread like a fragile bird, afraid of anything that can potentially hurt you again.

Self-proclamations usually surface at this point: "I'll never love/trust/open-up again!" But these beliefs will only jade you. And if you hold on to the cynicism too long, you may lose out on the next door that was meant to open.

It's been over half a year since my own heartbreak, and to be honest, while every day is filled with great friends, tons of joy and lots and lots of laughter, there are moments, especially at night when I'm alone, that I have my moments of overwhelming emotion. I still struggle with the fact that someone who I loved so dearly left me and so easily started a new life with someone else. So when you see how I build up impossible walls, and fight so hard to protect my ego and heart -- this is where it comes from. A place of fear, where all of my insecurities, sense of abandonment and feelings of not being good enough loom over me at the thought of risking opening up my heart again.

It has taken the support and wisdom of good friends and family, beautiful songs and witnessing others in positive relationships to take me out of my jaded, black cloud and believe in love again. I've realized that all I can do is be a source of love myself, to embrace the love around me, cherish it and share it with others. That is my source of joy.

I'll end off with a quote that always reminds me of you -- a constantly changing, ever- evolving soul:

"Just when the caterpillar thought the world was over, it became a butterfly".