Take a stroll down memory lane and think back to your first love — Remember all the warm feelings and excitement surrounding this new person in your life. Then after several months, several years, or even several weeks you two break-up and sudden doom has surrounded your heart.
As an adult, it is easy for us to disregard teen love or even forget our first love/heartbreak experience. We may deem the teenage love as puppy love, infatuation, and lust. And it may very well be these things. However, it is well known that teenage heartbreak is a significant precipitator to suicidal thoughts. It is important to not ignore or belittle the disappointment our teens may be experiencing. For this time in their life, these feelings are very real and intense. So although wisdom and experience has afforded us the knowledge that the heart is resilient, will heal and there is “plenty of fish in the sea”, teens do not have this foreknowledge. It may be condescending to a teen to say, “cheer up!” or “it’s not that bad!” Acknowledge their pain and sadness. If appropriate, share your story about your first love and heartbreak and how you battled the feelings of sadness. Don’t use this break-up as an opportunity to rag on their ex and declare you never liked them anyway. Be a good listener. Encourage them to spend time with friends and family. If the heartbreak persists or increases, seek professional help!