Break-Up Books for 'Bachelor' Contestants
In last night's season finale, "Bachelor" heartthrob Sean Lowe chose to propose to Catherine, the quirky love-note scribe from Seattle, shattering the hearts of runner-up Lindsay as well as the show's millions of fans, all in one brutal stroke.
After a stretch of sunken ratings, ABC's "The Bachelor," the reality show in which 25 women compete for one man's hand in marriage, made a comeback this season (its 17th), drawing an audience of nearly 9 million viewers. What had people tuning in to watch the horde of smitten singles slowly dwindle week after week? Some credit the show's growing popularity among younger audiences. Others have chalked its success up to its leading man Lowe, the strawberry-blonde 28-year-old insurance agent from Texas who made headlines with both his frequent shirtlessness and his outspoken commitment to his faith (he refers to himself as a "born-again virgin").
At any rate, the conclusion of the show means pain for many, happiness for few. For all the ladies who didn't get a rose, and for the fans who tuned in week after week: we've got the books whose advice can heal your heart.
Drop the Nutella
The first few days (and even weeks) after heartbreak can be a haze of tears, TV and junk food, and that's OK—to a point. Eventually (and, preferably sooner than later), you're going to have to peel yourself from your sofa, scrub off your misery and return to the real world. When you do, be sure to have Greg Behrendt (co-author of "He's Just Not That Into You") and Amiira Ruotola-Behrendt's book, "It's Called a Breakup Because It's Broken," which shells out the mix of tender encouragement and tough-love advice you'll need in this first fragile stage of healing.
Learn from love mistakes
Breakups can teach you valuable lessons about relationships (other than that they break hearts) and about yourself (other than that you aren't loveable). Don't let the only takeaway from your breakup be a sour take on love. In "It's a Breakup, Not a Breakdown," dating coach Lisa Steadman describes how to not only rise from the ashes of your romance, but how to re-emerge as an even better version of yourself.
Embrace being single
Breakups can lead to personal transformations, but in order take best advantage of them, you may have to go solo for a while. In "The Breakup Bible," psychotherapist and relationship expert Rachel Sussman argues that healing from heartbreak isn't just about getting back in the dating game—it's also about learning to stand on your own. "Not only can you live without him," Sussman writes, "it is even possible to thrive."
Get back on the horse
The itch for romance is bound to return sooner or later, and when it does, be sure to follow Jessica Massa's unconventional advice as laid out in her book "The Gaggle." One of the biggest mistakes people make in dating, she argues, is waiting around for Mr. or Mrs. Perfect—not because that person will never come, but because he or she might be right there within reach. Massa advises those seeking real love to see their friends, friends-of-friends, hook-up buddies and even co-workers—their "gaggle"—in a whole new light: not just as stepping stones to The One, but as prime contenders in their own right.