A well-written celebrity breakup statement has the power to reduce fans into quivering tear-puddles. Remember when Channing and Jenna Dewan Tatum told us that "love is a beautiful adventure that is taking us on different paths for now"? When Anna Faris and Chris Pratt said that they "tried hard for a long time and [are] really disappointed"? And when Zayn Malik said he has a "huge amount of respect and adoration for Gigi [Hadid] as a woman and a friend"? These are the kinds of words that simultaneously shatter and rebuild our belief in love. Yes, your fave celeb couple just split, but don't worry, they still love each other.
Some have called these kinds of breakup statements attention-seeking. But that's exactly the point, and it's actually a good thing, says Chloe Carmichael, PhD, a licensed clinical psychologist. "Sometimes, a breakup can bring feelings of loneliness or can make you question your self-worth, and those are actually feelings that warrant attention," she says. And given their healing power, breakup statements shouldn't just be a thing celebrities do. Anyone who needs comfort following a breakup should consider writing one.
Immediately post-breakup, you'll want your family and friends' support. And, unlike quietly removing your relationship status from Facebook and deleting all traces of your ex on Instagram (if the relationship ended badly), posting a public statement could help your family and friends know that you need their help. Dr. Chloe suggests using the statement to ask for what you need, but also to tell your loved ones what you don't need. "One of the things people going through a breakup often say is that they really don't want to hear everyone else's opinion about it," Dr. Chloe says. "They just want everyone to accept it." But people come with opinions (especially the people who love you), so if you don't want to hear what everyone has to say about your ex, then tell them that. You can say something like, "Even though [ex] and I have broken up, they're still a good person. So let's avoid the trash-talking, please?" Or, say something else that fits your situation, but make it clear that you don't want to hear anyone's thoughts on your ex and how they never thought that person was good for you anyway.
Instead, tell them what they can do for you. As a non-celebrity, you can leverage your statement to get what you need. Generally, celebrities have to cater to their public image, so they likely won't say things like, "I'm feeling really lonely after this breakup." But you, as a non-celebrity, can say that and you can follow it up with "who wants to grab lunch?" As the lunch invitations roll in, your loneliness might evaporate (at least a little bit). "It's always good to tell people what you do want instead of just what you don't want, because people want to help," Dr. Chloe says. "So it's helpful to give them tools to support you."
Tools, in this case, can be something like that lunch invitation, or anything else people can do to help you out. Depending on how your breakup went down, that could mean asking friends to spread the word that the breakup was friendly and you don't want to hear trash talk, or it could mean asking whether anyone has cute friends they can set you up with, or asking people not to check in on you too much (because that just reminds you of the breakup). Whatever it is that you need to start moving on, your breakup statement is a great way to get it.
A public statement on Instagram, Facebook, or whatever other social media that you know all of your family and friends are reading, is also an amazing way to make sure that you don't have to keep reliving the breakup. Otherwise, you'll have to tell everyone when you see them, or field questions about why you never post photos of your S.O. anymore.
But even if you don't want to post anything publicly, writing a celebrity-esque breakup statement can be a good idea, Dr. Chloe says. Because it gives you (and your ex, if you're still friendly and want to write one together) a chance to reflect on the relationship. "When we can put a couple of sentences down to describe a breakup in a way that makes us feel overall good about it, we're able to end that relationship in a healthy way that actually gives us a good foundation for the next relationship," she says. It can be soothing to sit with your ex or by yourself and think about what you've learned from the relationship, whether or not you want to share your thoughts with the internet.