Lauren Potter tells PEOPLE: "After we got married I wanted to wake up and see him make breakfast for me. I loved him so much" 

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Lauren Potter’s fairytale ending is on hold – for now.

The Glee actor – who accepted a promise ring in August from childhood friend–turned–boyfriend Timothy Spear during a beachside proposal – tells PEOPLE that she’s single again.

“It hurts,” admits Potter the 26-year-old actress and advocate for people with special needs, who had been talking to TLC’s Say Yes to the Dress and a wedding dress designer when Spear ended their relationship over the holidays. “After we got married I wanted to wake up and see him make breakfast for me. I loved him so much.”

“He did not like the publicity,” says a sympathetic Robin Sinkhorn, Potter’s mom. “It was overwhelming.”

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Credit: Lauren Potter

But weep not for Sue Sylvester’s muse Becky Jackson — besides looking forward to an appearance in the April 11 finale of Switched at Birth, Potter has been hitting the gym to prepare for bikini season and has already gone out on a few very promising dates. She even has a new employment goal: If Hollywood won’t hire her, she’s hoping Starbucks will instead. Potter’s been working with a job coach. (Though she’d still gladly take those calls from Tinseltown!)

“She looks adorable,” says Sinkhorn. “This is the first time I’ve seen her happy in months. She’s looking forward to the future.”