Wise Guys: How Do Men Deal with Bad Breakups?

photo via flickr

Advice from three of EMandLO.com’s guy friends. This week they answer the following: “Pop culture is filled with examples of how women deal with breakups. How do most guys deal with really bad breakups?” To ask the guys your own question, click here.

Gay Married Guy (Jon Ross): This depends of course entirely on the man, and I think it’s impossible to suggest how “most guys” deal with really bad breakups, when every man is different. Some will collect all their stuff and go out with someone new the next night, others will shutter themselves in their homes and weep away the days. It will all depend on the length, intensity and commitment level of the relationship — and of course the personality of the guy. Personally I always felt it was a waste of time to sit around feeling sad and sorry for the state of my affairs. I’d usually take one night to have a good cry, reminisce and look at old pictures, and then move on.

Straight Single Guy (Adam): This is an easy one. When a guy has a really bad break up he spends a lot of time in a ratty old bathrobe, lamenting the loss of love and shutting himself off to the world. At some point he realizes the error of his ways and makes a grand sweeping romantic gesture in the hopes of winning back the girl of his dreams back. Sometimes it works, but when it doesn’t, he gets a reassuring sense that everything will be all right because “she’s doing okay” and he really only wanted her to be happy in the first place. … And then the credits roll. See, the movies are full of stereotypes about guys, too.

In the non-movie world though, the answer is a little more complex. How long were they together? Were they in love? How did it end, and who ended it? The answers to these questions will have a lot to do with how a guy typically handles a breakup. All that said, though, I think that, as a general rule of thumb, guys will try to do their best to put their exes out of their minds for the short term and get back out into the social scene as quickly as possible to build up their confidence again and avoid focusing on what is ultimately a pretty painful thing. Hey, it’s not all that romantic, but in this case, life doesn’t really imitate art.

Confidential aside to all the single women reading: None of this, of course, applies to ME… I’ll give you romantic gestures and deep depression over my loss of you…of course.

Straight Married Guy (Matt): It really depends on the guy and the breakup, but as a general rule, guys definitely try to go out and hook up as much as possible as quickly as possible. And that’s pretty much it. No long talks, no ice cream, no sad movies, we just want to get out there and give our damaged ego a boost as soon as is humanly possible.

Our “guys” are a rotating group of contributors. Our Gay Married Guy is Jon Ross, who works for a network news program and lives in Brooklyn with his husband and two dogs; our Straight Single Guy is Adam, a lawyer and native Floridian in his early thirties; and our Straight Married Guy is a little shy. To ask the guys your own question, click here.