Whether it's breaking up with a boyfriend or going through a divorce - the emotional rejection is very real. And new research shows the impact can feel much like physical pain. Freeman Psychologist AJ Whitmire said, "For example, if we spill hot coffee on ourself or if we are rejected by a partner, an unwanted rejection both hurt."
The study focused on individuals who had experienced an unwanted romantic breakup within the past six months - using magnetic reasonance imaging or MRI to compare those feelings with more friendly feelings and actual physical pain. Added Whitmire, "The results actually showed that, that social rejection triggered those same somatasensory regions of the brain that are strongly associated with physical pain but only rarely associated with other emotions."