Recovery from Heartbreak

This beautiful young woman was heartbroken two years ago.  There is a big lesson to learn from her experience.  Her name is Alley Scott.  She's an actress and she is in a documentary about heartbreak called "Sleepless in New York" by Swiss director Christian Frei.  Frei caught her in the throes of heartbreak two years ago.  All she wanted was to get back with her former boyfriend.  We did a brain scan study of Alley when she was totally miserable about her loss, and it is part of the documentary.  Helen Fisher is featured in the film.  Lucy is in it, too.

At the time, we wanted to tell her that she would get over this terrible, physical and emotional pain and find someone else.  We wanted to tell her that time would make the pain go away.  We knew she wouldn't believe us, though.  We've been there.  We know how much it hurts and how it feels impossible that you could ever stop loving the person you lost.

Why did nature make it so painful for some of us?  Could it serve any purpose?  The only advantage, perhaps, is to keep relationships going through great troubles.  It can be good to keep trying to make a relationship work-- until you know for sure it won't. It can take some time and lots of negative experiences.  We need to be able to attach to people deeply, and not give up easily.  Some pain during heartbreak shows what a great partner you will be for someone else in the future.  It is totally natural.  Nature gave us these strong systems of attachment.  Indeed, we think that romance and attachment are the original addictions that nature gave us, so we wouldn't give up easily.  But, we CAN give an addiction up eventually.  Alley got angry, and stopped seeing him.

Alley is now happily in love with a great guy.  They are moving in together.  She is glowing with joy.  It happens.  You can get over a romantic rejection.  You find a new self.  It can be an adventure.  Alley worked on it by being in a film.  Some people write about it.  Some people listen to a lot of music.

"Exploring the difficult path out of self-destructive obsessive behavior, toward a new self."

See the trailer of the movie:

The Sleepless in New York website also has a nice interview with Christian Frei, who talks about why he made the movie, and that it was the most difficult film he has made.  It was even harder than making a war film.  Yes, heartbreak is painful, but you can emerge as a new person.

Lucy & Helen

LucyBrownDr. Helen Fisher