Whether you're happily or unhappily single, if you're single at all, Valentine's day will probably make you sick to your stomach. The important thing to realize today is that you're not alone in this. As someone who's freshly and unhappily single, I've been watching a lot more movies lately, and I've discovered a few things to help me lick my emotional wounds that I think most people can relate to.
Click through to see my (patent-pending) step-by-step process for how to use movies to feel better on Valentine's day.
Part 1 - Watch Something Sad
One thing that I think that people don't always understand about grief is that sometimes when you're sad, you just want to be sad. And there's absolutely nothing wrong with that. You just have to really feel the depths of that emotion before you can start to make the long climb back up to normalcy. Part 1 of Liz Rugg's Relationship Sadness Cure is to indulge in that - watch something that will make you sad, that will make you cry, that will make you want to call your best friend to talk about stuff.
Here are some suggestions on things to watch to be sad:
1. Blue Valentine
Reason number one: Ryan Gosling. Reason number two: relationship that seemed great at first but painfully disintegrates and everyone ends up getting hurt, including the children.
2. (500) Days of Summer
(500) Days of Summer is a great movie to watch after a breakup, especially if you're the one who got broken up with. The reason for this is because (*spoilers*) (500) Days of Summer shows that some people are just not a right fit, but that does not mean that you won't have that right fit with someone else. Sometimes, as painful as it may be, the right thing to do is to just move on.
3. Rosemary's Baby
Want a movie that will try to prove to you that love is dead, or at least Satanic? Rosemary's Baby is that movie. Lets just say that there is Satanic rape involved while Rosemary's husband watches - he's given the ok in exchange for Satan helping him to further his acting career. Actors, man! Also, Rosemary's Baby will make you not want to ever have sex for fear of producing a demon-child.
4. Lost In Translation
Man, what can't be said about how perfect this movie is? Unhappy marriages, unrequited love, all coming to a head in a satisfying, though movingly disappointing ending. Also, I'm fairly sure that Bill Murray could be used as a home remedy for just about any ailment. Including a broken heart.
5. Eternal Sunshine of a Spotless Mind
Perpetual Geoffrey Henao favorite, Eternal Sunshine gives us a glimpse at what the world could be like if we had the power to truly erase all of our painful memories. (Again, *spoilers*) The true moral of Eternal Sunshine, however, is despite the fact that, though hypothetically you may be superficially more happy without those memories, there is something truly important - and truly human - about experiencing, enduring, and conquering pain that we all need. Yes, those memories may be painful now and may continue to be painful for a long time, but as they say, all of those memories collect into your experience as a person, and what we learn from our past is up to us.
Part 2: Watch Some Guilty Pleasures
No, this does not mean porn. So, we've been down the tunnel of sadness and we've reached the point where we're ready for a pick-me-up. Now's the time to pop in something that will make you feel better! Unfortunately, I can't tell you quite what that is - for me it was Studio Ghibli movies and Cowboy Bebop, but for some people it could be a slasher/horror movie. For some people, it's some cerebral, mind-bending movie; for others, possibly an old classic. Whatever it is, queue it up and watch the crap out of it. If it's truly your guilty pleasure, I guarantee that it will make you feel better.
Part 3: (Optional) Take A Chance on Something New
Part of - if not the only - upside to breaking up is that it's a chance for a fresh start. And that this can apply to whatever part of your life you want it to. Use this opportunity to watch those things you've heard a lot about and been meaning to try, but haven't gotten around to. Discovering something wonderful for the first time can give you a sense of bravery and excitement about the possibilities out there in the world.
Alright, if you've followed my instructions carefully, you should be in a much better place than where we started. Happy Valentine's Day to all my fellow single people out there, and remember that things will get better, but when they're not, there's always some movies to watch. Xoxoxo
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