How to break up
I so much wish I was writing a post on how to sustain relationships. But that’s just not something I can claim to be an authority on, can I? So instead, I write on how to break-up.
I read a post on a friend’s blog today which touched a raw nerve. From what I’ve seen, the person in question probably doesn’t actually believe it but simply found it amusing. So I’m not linking back to that reference.
The post had tips on how to break-up while avoiding the discomfort of the whole process. Now, having gone through this so very many times, I can attest to the fact that practice does not make perfect. There is no easy way to dump someone or get dumped for that matter. In either case you look bad, it is uncomfortable for both parties.
That should perhaps be one’s solace, that no one is the ‘winner’ in this. Its a relationship that needs termination, not a race or a war – at least I hope it hasn’t reached that stage. Even in the worst, most unpleasant situations, try and remember that there must have been some nice moments with the person. That’s probably preachy and I can’t live up to that always, myself, so I’ll try another tack.
Speaking out of pure practical intent, if its over, the person and the relationship does not deserve any more time and attention invested in them. Make a clean break, it is really the simplest thing to do. Elaborate farces, heavy emotional drama all of them take their toll…or at very least require you to do SOMETHING…anything.
And finally I think anybody who has been close to you, even briefly deserves the dignity of the truth, at least. Leaving a person with empty questions is consigning a shitload of emotional baggage to their lot. Maybe that’s what you want after how they’ve made you feel…but really, how much do you gain over making a person think of you everyday, badly? I’d rather they don’t think of me at all than think of me maliciously.
Don’t bother with the blame-game (how does it matter who is responsible anyway? Believe me you’re going to feel just as shitty about it, whether you acknowledge it or not). And honestly, honestly it does not matter who actually verbalises it, partings are generally painful anyway.
As for how they are going to react, if you’re breaking up with them, why should it matter anymore? I tell myself that…and yes, I’m a person who can’t handle other people’s emotional scenes and tears. They are responsible for their behaviour but you are responsible for yours.
I’m all for a clean break, the simple truth, served up direct without frills.
Being at peace with yourself is often a function of how cleanly you’ve lived your choices. Think of all that, the next time you need to call a halt to a relationship.
* A later version of this post is here. One version also appears on Yahoo! Real Beauty.