1. Tell all your mutual friends the intimate details of how she hurt you.
The day after she breaks up with you, you may be overcome with the desire to call every mutual friend you have and tell them about how she stole all of your Joan Jett & The Blackhearts albums on vinyl, never took your dog on morning walks, and flirted with the same barista for three years. Tell it to your diary, not your mutual friends. No one wants to take sides.
2. Say all the terrible things you know will end any chance of friendship.
Don’t tell her how you’ve always secretly thought her mother was condescending. Don’t tell her you never liked the haircut she’s had for the past year. Don’t bring up dissatisfaction in the bedroom. The relationship is over. There’s no point in dredging up all the things you should’ve worked out earlier. At this point, you’re just out for revenge.
3. Flip through six months of journal entries and every photo of you together on your phone in an attempt to figure out where it went wrong.
Unless you really want to feel like the sad, pathetic loser who’s been dumped, in which case, you should totally do this. On the other hand, don’t delete or burn every photo of you together. It looks satisfying in movies, but in reality, you’ll just wish you still had them a year down the line when you and your ex are on good terms again.
4. Reply to messages you received four months ago on your neglected OkCupid profile.
If you’re going to date again, don’t fall back on people you ignored before meeting your ex-girlfriend. There were red flags there the first time, and those red flags haven’t disappeared. Yes, I’m talking about the woman who credits Macklemore with legalizing same-sex marriage in her “My self-summary” section. If you didn’t want to date her four months ago, you really don’t want to date her now.
5. Lay on the floor motionless cry-singing “Breathe” by Melissa Etheridge on repeat.
Okay, if this breakup is really rough, you’re allowed one night of motionless cry-singing. But no more than one night. Then you have to get up. Or at least switch to hairbrush-microphone singing Tegan and Sara songs.
6. Text her, “I miss you,” at 2:45 in the morning.
Speaking from really embarrassing experience, this will absolutely never result in her texting back, “I miss you too.” She also won’t show up under your window and sing “Come to My Window” while playing an acoustic guitar. She won’t call you and whisper apologies and sweet nothings until you fall asleep together over the phone. She might, however, block your number.
7. Shave your head at 3:45 in the morning.
Again, this is one of those breakup things that looks way more liberating in movies than it actually is in real life. When she doesn’t respond to your weird texts, go to sleep. Don’t give yourself the world’s worst buzz cut and wear a hat for the next two months.
8. Visit her Facebook page 36 times in one hour.
Trying to gauge how your ex-girlfriend is doing from her Facebook page is like trying to translate Ancient Greek poetry when you’re not Anne Carson. Plus, do you really want to feel like her life is infinitely more exciting and awesome since your breakup just because she posted a few adorable Insta photos from a queer dance party?
9. Attempt to subtly ask your mutual friends how she’s doing.
Trust me, it is anything but subtle when you do this. If you’re at the point where all the bad times breakup feelings have dissipated and you just miss your friend, give her a call at a time when she’ll actually be awake, and ask her yourself like a grown woman.
10. Keep all of her best flannel shirts hostage.
It’s not very mature to keep all of your ex’s belongings stashed in your closet. That should be reason enough to give her stuff back. If you really need more motivation, imagine what would happen if she died in a horrible accident, and the police had to investigate the possibility of murder, and you were the lesbian ex-girlfriend with a creepy flannel shrine in the back of your closet. Guess who’s now at the top of the suspect list.