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The Break Up Diet

What was your version of the breakup diet? Me, barely consuming 300 calories for the first two weeks..then slowing adding Annie's Mac and Cheese and now day 17, a few bites of chocolate. Feeing better each day....

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  1. Stopping by the corner store on my way home from work and buying whatever looked good under the heat lamps (usually a half broiled chicken breast) or a pint of Ben and Jerry's (which would last me 4 nights). During the day, mostly coffee.

    1. Keep feeling better!

      My usual breakup "diet" had always been oinking out. Sadly, I never found that need to starve myself. I'd be rather svelte if I had those genes.

      Please eat what makes you feel better in the short run, then remember that you have the rest of your life to live and eat EVERYTHING else.

      Sending you my best wishes...

      1. Where's the beer? That's mostly been my "breakup diet".

        (In case relevant, heterogametic [XY] chromosomes for me.)

        Sorry about your pain, phelana.

        6 Replies
        1. re: drongo

          LOL..seriously Terrie H, in previous breakups, I'd eat. Two weeks prior to this break up I stopped eating ..During that time, I forced myself to consume a few calories. Once I ended the relationship, I did start to eat slowly but it was the Annie's Mac and comfort foods like pasta...now, I am healing and eating pretty normal.

          drongo, beer must soothe the soul, eh?

          Jeri, seriously a pint lasts 4 nights? You have willpower, girl.

          1. re: phelana

            so sorry, phelana.
            Pasta with the usual comfort ingredients (cheese, eggs, bacon, sausage, cream, etc) are where I turn when I'm needing comfort. Fortunately I'm not going through a breakup, having been married for 25 years. If somehow that got broken up all bets would be off. Not sure which way I'd swing, or whether I'd go between anorexia to massive eating. I hope to never have to find out.

            1. re: phelana

              I decided if I was going to be miserable I would be thin and miserable. Because skinny=more loveable, right? When I got happier I started eating again. It has taken me many years to work out "thin and happy"! I like ice cream but I don't need much to satisfy--I can leave it alone even when I'm not depressed.

            2. re: drongo

              drongo, I'd never have guessed about the XY combo ;-D

              1. re: drongo

                I had a friend that would only do beer and avocado sandwiches, yet oddly she always lost about ten pounds.

              2. Stuff that I didn't generally get a chance to eat during the relationship due to cooking for two has to be a compromise of preferences. So lots of soup (it's also quick if you go bought and lasts for heaps of meals if you make from scratch), noodles, fish. And that roasted pork you can buy in pieces from Chinese barbecue shops, chopped up over rice and wilted green vegetables.

                3 Replies
                1. re: raisingirl

                  THIS! :-) things guys often don't like, like white wine and lentils. And things that are labor intensive where the effort goes up by quantity, like fresh pasta. Also things that don't keep well to make a lot, like fried anything, pancakes, and crepes. And things that are expensive, where I can buy a little just for me, like Whole Foods seafood.

                  This is a food site, and not really the place for me to go on about breakups, but I do want to extend my sympathy. I've been there, and know it's absolutely heart-wrenching. It feels like heroin withdrawal looks. Sometimes you just have to baby yourself for a bit: hide from anything that reminds you when it gets too overwhelming, and wallow when you want to. Congratulate yourself for doing the absolute necessities, and require nothing else of yourself. If cooking makes you sad right now, and you'd rather eat junk food or takeout, go for it. The breakups after you've been sort of chasing the person seem to be the most brutal. Somehow, your mind interprets his unavailability as a sign that he's fantastic and irreplaceable, and it seems to blind you to all of his flaws. It also feels like all your efforts at winning him fell short, which can feel like a waste and a major failure. I know that it will do you no good for me to say that he isn't the be-all end-all, and that you will love again just as much, and that you will love cooking and eating again. This is a knowledge that has to grow in your feelings, and it takes time. I will say that there is at least a reasonable chance that this is the most painful breakup you will ever go through. For me, a bad breakup was the catalyst in learning that rejecting me or acting distant didn't make a guy worthy of my affection. I came to feel that all of the little things I had explained away as "he's in pain!" and "he loves me, he's just fighting it!" "if circumstances were different, we'd be together!" "we don't need labels!" were nonsense and not going to fly anymore. I recognized them sooner, and I didn't waste my time with the guys who threw out warning signs of commitment-phobia early on. The guy I've been seeing for the past year learned to make perfect poached eggs recently and brings me breakfast in bed at least once a week. He's made it clear that he'll move to wherever I want to live. Whether or not the relationship works out, it's proof that love doesn't have to be so painful. It gets better.

                  1. re: jvanderh

                    JV, WOWW...that's all I can say..I truly appreciate this....If this was 20 years ago my coping would have been far different. I welcome a fun relationship with a chowhound worthy of my love....and in time I will love cooking again...eating, well it's coming. I am going to a wonderful wine tasting tonight, Merriam Vineyards and it is accompanied by a lovely cheese platter. I cannot wait. ..open to love..open to new dining friendships... and to you..GOOD luck..he sounds dreamy and wonderful....don't we all want a great partner to share great food and wine and life...easy and simple...that's all I want...

                    1. re: jvanderh

                      Oh yeah! That was another thing. My ex was allergic to nuts, so when he left I went through a "nuts in everything!" phase.

                  2. I can't eat when I'm under emotional duress--no appetite and my throat just feels like it's closing when I try to swallow.

                    I can, however, drink.

                    I'd say some combination of whiskey and wine is the offical sponsor of my last breakup, with some protein powder-enhanced smoothies as a morning pick-me-up.

                    7 Replies
                    1. re: LeoLioness

                      Haven't broken up, but my beloved cat of10 years has just gone missing. Same heartache I fear. Haven't eaten for 2 days, and am seriously dehyrated by all the tears.,,
                      My heart goes out to you

                      1. re: freia

                        hugs freia, hope she/he comes back real soon

                        1. re: smartie

                          Thanks, smartie...she is/was a great cat. :(

                          1. re: freia

                            Good thoughts being sent your way, I hope she returns to you safely.
                            Just got an email from a friend whose cat dissapeared for three days. He returned a bit bruised and with an ear infection, but he did return!
                            Many hugs!

                            1. re: rabaja

                              Oh, I'm so sorry. Keep hope, I lost an 11 year old cat and found him almost 5 weeks later. It was the posters that did it, finally someone in the neighbourhood came by my place to say they'd noticed a cat matching the description hiding behind their garage.

                        2. re: freia

                          I hope s/he is found soon. Stay hopeful! I have three friends who each found their missing cats after a bit of time (4 mo., 6 mo. and 14 mo.). Each story was amazing.

                          Please know others know your heartache.

                        3. re: LeoLioness

                          Hey, me too! well, not so much the "no appetite" part, but as I move the fork toward my mouth I realize that my throat is closed and there will be no swallowing. This takes EXTREME distress though, and has only occured maybe twice in my life. Milder distress puts me knee deep in ice cream.

                          To the OP I say enjoy the weight loss because you're sure to put it back on with all those dinner dates to come ;-)

                        4. many, many moons ago, it was Taco Bell. Taco Bell 2-3 x a day, for about 3 months. food became punishment, or maybe a a numbing agent, instead of nourishment or pleasure. I only wished I'd been the type to starve my pain away - though i know that's not much healthier. (well, maybe.)

                          i remember the pain, phelana, and hope yours ends faster than mine did - it seriously lingered for waaay too long. and i moved on from Taco Bell, but not to much better fare, for a long, long time. but it does end, phelana - you will not always feel this way.

                          and freia - they usually come back! keep the faith - cats come back, where exes don't (which is usually the way it should be.)

                          1 Reply
                          1. re: mariacarmen

                            Mariacarmen, muchas gracias, seriously...the Chow hugs help..he was my dining soul mate (DSM). Freia, do a visualization of kitty coming home..call her in your mind and of course out loud...I have had many cats and most ended up coming home..the ones that did not always left a small void in my heart but also lovely memories...find comfort any way you can, appreciate that cat and she WILL come home...

                          2. Plenty of booze, plenty of chocolate cake and ice cream, lots of sub-moronic television -- you'll be just fine.

                            1 Reply
                            1. re: beevod

                              beevod, my friend made me homemade chocolate pretzels..I had 4 and honestly feel the sadness departing as my mouth still tastes the delicious chocolate...

                            2. First, please know that it does not matter how much it hurts now...it gets better and soon you won't even believe you were with that person when you find someone SO much better! That being said, I went through breakups, but never seemed to lose my appetite...actually I craved decadent foods. Knowing that I was doing what I wanted for ME made a great mental difference. I also had no issue drinking lots and lots of fine wines and champagnes....enjoy and celebrate YOU!!!

                              2 Replies
                              1. re: taboo

                                taboo, I love you..what a true sincere post..I already feel like I never really knew this person...and to think I had this amazing meal planned for the day we would have no doubt dumped me...I cannot wait to find my true partner who will appreciate my food and me...I love creating amazing menus..it's PURE FOREPLAY, right?

                                LOVE YOU ALL...

                                1. re: phelana

                                  Phelana.... been there, although I did the dumping. Made a 3 course dinner right out of Nobu's cookbook as a surprise for him. I then broke it off, ate it all and opened a bottle of 2004 Sassicaia, kicked back and said to myself.... "there is someone better that deserves me" and I still believe it. Trust me, someone will adore you and your food...until then, savor every bite....

                              2. My break-up diet? Lots of booze & lots of sleep. Eventually, I start eating again.

                                1. My breakup diet was anything quick, easy, and crappy that he would have disapproved of! Also having to adjust to cooking for one instead of myself and his appetite for 3 made a huge difference in how much time I spent preparing foods. OK, 5 months later, I'm still adjusting to it, but I keep simple stuff ready to nuke, as well as hard-boiled eggs, and lots of cheese for quick, high-protein meals.

                                  1. I like to have the bar fully stocked..
                                    Then, I like to have tacos, mac n'cheese, banana cream pie, dark chocolate with peanut butter to dunk in, coffee ice cream, pineapple slices, shrimp cocktails, gatorade, garden burgers on brioche and salads with avocados and blue cheese chunks.

                                    3 Stooges are also so great to have on at all times..nothing better than Curly, to make a chick feel good about themselves!

                                    Hang in there sweetheart..

                                    1. In all of my relationships, I have done the majority of the cooking and generally been the one that decides on a restaurant that will accomodate both of our tastes. This generally hasn't been hard, as none of my girlfriends have been terribly restrictive in what they would or would not eat; however, almost all of them have a few food hang-ups, whereas I'll eat just about anything.

                                      So, when break-ups have occurred, I've tended to overindulge in whatever type of food my ex-girlfriend did not enjoy. My last break-up, it was Mexican and Indian. I don't think I do this out of spite, although it is probably a coping mechanism for me in some way, but at the time and upon review I truly just think I do such because I can. Last break-up I was literally excited the next day to try this new Mexican joint up the road that I hadn't been able to get to because she always shot that idea down.

                                      Also, whisky, beer and whiskey have featured heavily in all of my break-up diets, but, then again, they feature heavily in my regular diet as well, so I wouldn't consider that out of the norm.

                                      1 Reply
                                      1. re: MonMauler

                                        Exactly what I felt! I couldn't get the ex-bf to go out unless he'd been drinking too much and then he'd have to walk somewhere because I wouldn't go out with him in that state. I know, more information than anyone needs here.

                                        So once he was gone, I started exploring new and different places in town, and visiting old ones I hadn't been to in awhile. And funny (or not) - my folks and their friends have been inviting me to go out with them again, whereas mysteriously, they'd stopped doing so when he was around.

                                      2. I've never been one to loose my appetite. I never understand when people say, "How can you eat at a time like this?" I can always eat. I have no problem slurping spaghetti through tears, or a fever of 104. When I'm stressed, sad, nervous, whatever - the more I eat. Comfort food really is medicinal to me.

                                        I tend to diet when I'm happy. I actually crave healthy food when I'm feeling good. The gym is my friend once again.

                                        So my breakup diet would be a self - medicating cycle of carbs and alcohol. Immediately followed (hopefully) by a new love, feel good endorphins, and salad. Lots of salad.

                                        2 Replies
                                        1. re: Whinerdiner

                                          the responses brought lots of smiles..much appreciation all...Taboo, I love your post..and yes, someone will adore me and appreciate my food and I will get back into the cooking groove...for those that chose booze, man that would depress the hell out of me and I could not afford to be hungover. I barely made it to work not eating or sleeping for two weeks let alone if I was hungover. Now that I am at day 18 (who's counting) I am celebrating my life and really focusing on me. Heading to that wine tasting..

                                          Danna, no doubt..I lost 7 pounds but at 5'2" that's like 10 on another...Freia, let us know if when the kitty comes home and he/she will come home..send out love..

                                          Off to eat some pita and butter ..it's my dinner these days..really comforting toasted with the real butter all drippy inside..and cowboy style drinking Tropicana OJ..I know I know.

                                          Ciao and happy eating all..

                                          1. re: phelana

                                            Glad you are moving through this so well!

                                        2. Glad you are starting to feel better Phelana. Hang in there. I am one of those people that cannot eat when stressed either. I drop weight quickly. Usually the only thing I could manage is warm tea. I went through hell with my ex husband 4 years ago. Not fun.

                                          Freia, I hope and pray your kitty comes back. I have had cats that haven't come home, and one that finally did show up weeks later.

                                          1. Oh man, I go both ways!
                                            One particularly bad breakup+ring return+moving out left me eating almost nothing for about 6 weeks...15 lbs lost! If it were not for the fact that I was telecommuting and basically "worked" from my bed (thus exerting about 200 calories a day) I might have died of starvation. A slice of bread here and there was all for quite a while... then suddenly, it was better!
                                            A more recent breakup went the other way- carbs, carbs, carbs! Pasta with cheese and butter, cakes, chips, cookies...whatever I wanted! Plus all the wine I could responsibly drink and still get to work the next day. A few weeks of that and the pants were getting tight, but man...it felt SO good to be doing what I wanted to do for once. Oddly enough, I attracted more dates on my porky side than on my emaciated side (though those jeans from highschool looked great!)