Jo Piazza is an award-winning journalist, author, and podcaster. She wrote the international bestseller, The Knockoff, and her latest book How to be Married is all about what she learned from real women on five continents about the first year of marriage. She also hosts the podcast Committed, which is all about what happens after “I do.” We asked Jo a few questions about heartbreak and she shared all the post-breakup rituals that helped her heal.
If you think back to the first time you were heartbroken, what advice would you give to that younger version of yourself?
“This is for the best. And it won’t last. Every single one of my heartbreaks had me paralyzed in bed and mad as hell. And in the long run, they were the best thing that ever could have happened to me. Eat all of the chocolate, drink the vodka, and then get back up and get back out there.”
What has heartbreak taught you about yourself?
“That I’m a lot stronger than I thought I was. When they were happening I thought each of them would break me. But you don’t break. And you are stronger and smarter the next time around.”
What are your rituals during a breakup? What things/practices/people helped you mend?
“I eat all of the chocolate. I drink and moan with my girlfriends. Then I tend to write about it. Writing about it has always cleared my palate and my brain and helped me put something that seems terrible in perspective. Break up with their social media. There’s no reason to keep following them. Would you keep swallowing poison or hitting yourself in the face? Take the time to heal. It’s OK that you don’t feel 100% right away. Take your time.”
What’s the biggest lesson you’ve learned about love so far in your life?
“That all of the terrible cliches are true. Real love actually does happen when you least expect it. When it’s right, it isn’t hard. When it’s hard, it isn’t right. Relationships should be wonderful and easy at first because life only gets more difficult.”
Do you think exes can be friends? Do you stay friends with your exes on social media?
“Yes. After time. You need to take one apart if you ever want to be real friends. Saying you can be friends right away is always bullshit.”
What keeps your heart open, despite the heartbreaks you’ve had in your life?
“Well I ended up finding love when I least expected it, getting engaged three months later and now I’ve been married almost two years.”
What is your favorite song about heartbreak?
What is your favorite movie about heartbreak?
“My Best Friends Wedding.”