So your ship just sank. You’re watching your favorite television series and you’ve just come to the stunting realization that your One True Pairing is never going to be paired together…or that they won’t be paired when the series bows out. How can you handle this? Between fits of rage, streams of tears, and tubs of Rocky Road and Cookie Dough ice cream shoved endlessly into your mouth, at some point you have to realize that it’s over, and you must move on. Right?

WRONG! Moving on is for real people with their real problems and real relationships IRL. There’s a reason we decided to get so emotionally invested in the drama that manifests from actors reading scripts during caliente-chemistry scenes between fictional characters. It’s because of the emotions they elicit inside us. In other words, THE FEELS. And any shipper will tell you that feels can completely wreck you. That’s why we’ve decided to compile a short list of activities that will keep out of a panic once you have realized your OTP will never be endgame.

Rewatch your OTP’s episodes or scenes (AKA “Denial”)
This first one may seem a bit obvious, but sometimes during a feels crisis, the obvious becomes the never-thought-about. As we have pointed out in the past, Eternal Sunshine Rewatching is the perfect remedy to forgetting how any series actually turned out. Of course, that guide talked about when a show has jumped the shark, but it can easily be applied to when you need to forget that your OTP was not meant to be, according to the showrunner. What you want to do is grab any episode that was centered around your OTP and put it in your queue. If your OTP never shared episode-wide installments together, then just gather a list of the most important scenes they shared together and make a playlist on YouTube. It’s always important to have some sort of playlist or queue handy so that you can always pull it up and watch whenever you’re down that your ship sunk. Tip: Find a Tumblr user who is the “queen” or “king” of your ship; they will usually have a list of all the important episodes/scenes that your OTP shared.

Reblog the GIFs (AKA “Poor Man’s Denial”)
Okay, so we don’t all have the time nor the resources to rewatch every single episode and scene between our OTPs. But that’s okay. That’s why the Shipper Gods created Tumblr. Follow a few users who either reblog GIFs or make their own, and make sure to reblog or like them yourself. That way, you can always watch your flawless OTP in a vacuum state filtered to highlighted and accented colors and reminisce of what could have been. Tip: Make sure to save your OTP’s shipper name in the search so that you’re only a click away to troll their tag.

Write Fanfiction (AKA “Create the Narrative”)
Who ever said that showrunners and writers for shows were the best-equipped to tell those stories? No one, that’s who! It’s 2013: if you don’t like a show, you can change that show. Why not? Oh you think that Suitor B is better for that character, huh Mr. Showrunner? WELL YOU’RE WRONG. And we will prove it to you by writing the smuttiest Fanfiction ever. See how hot that was? See how we included callbacks to all the cute, little inside jokes between our OTP and you NEVER do that!? Why didn’t you include it in your show? Exactly. Bonus: Writing fanfiction also gives you the satisfaction of receiving reviews, which boost your ego!

Read Fanfiction (AKA “Read Someone Else’s Narrative”)
Let’s face it: we all don’t have the time nor the essential tools to write stories. So, sometimes you just have to be a fan of someone else’s fanfiction. And that’s totally okay, too. As long as there are a lot of sex scenes between your OTP. (Okay, fine, and some “fluff,” as well.)

Vid Them (AKA “They’re Head-Cannon”)
Sometimes we have OTPs who were never really romantically involved. But that doesn’t mean that her longing stare towards another character or his tearful outcry about something completely unrelated cannot be spliced together to a song vaguely used in the show and have it appear as if their love story is epic — WHICH IT IS.

Pretend you’re one-half of your OTP (AKA “Become Delusional”)
Trick your brain into thinking that you are a character in the series, who is also a part of your OTP. Act out scenes and potential storylines alone in your bedroom. Cry appropriately because you are both (A) Forever alone and (B) Delusional. Realize that your potential storyline would make for some good fanfiction.

Branch out to other shippers (AKA “Burn Book”)
Sometimes the best way to get over a breakup — either real or fictional — is to just hangout with some likeminded people and cry… and also just curse out those responsible. Get on Tumblr, search on Twitter, find those who are just as upset as you and decide to cry. Then exchange tweets about how awful the writers are. Cry again.

Food (AKA “Obviously”)
Just eat food. Eat a lot of food.

Michael loves TV. You can find him at home, where he spends all of his time watching TV with his best friends couch and cable access.