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Here’s How Long It Actually Takes to Get Over a Breakup

Self logo Self 12/3/2014 Ashley Mateo

'Tis the season for relationship status updates—yes, engagements, but also breakups, as the pressure to meet families or decide on happily ever after gets to be too much. Any breakup can seem like the end of the world , but during the holiday season? It's like adding salt to the wound. Luckily, there's a light at the end of the Ben & Jerry-lined tunnel.

Couple breaking up © Marko Gligorov/Getty Images Couple breaking up

It takes three months post-breakup to start viewing the experience in a positive light, according to a study published in the Journal of Positive Psychology. Researchers surveyed 155 young adults who's recently gone through a break (approximately 11 weeks before the poll), and found that 71 percent agreed with positive statements like "I have learned a lot about myself," "I have grown as a person," and "I am more goal-oriented." 

Here's an important note: this positive perspective developed regardless of whether the study participant had been the one to initiate the breakup. According to the scientists, these results prove that "growth and positive emotions may be a larger part of the relationship dissolution of experience than previously thought." So, instead of wallowing, queue up Ariana Grande—it's time to " Break Free " from that past relationship. 

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