Life is full of ups and downs, all having to do with the many aspects of humanity. It’s all in the wedding vows: for richer or poorer, in sickness and in health, for better or worse. But there’s one thing that the vows don’t discuss, the paths that the bride and groom walked before landing on their ultimate destination: each other.
There are thousands of little side stories in every person’s life, some more significant than others. Among these side stories are breakups. Though painful at the time, many couples will look back on their breakups together, as they can seem funny in retrospect. For those of us who have not yet reached a black tie happy ending, here are a few tips of what not to do if you don’t want to die alone.
1) Bad-Excuse Breakups
It’s totally understandable that somebody would want to save a person’s feelings from hurt. But, really, saying you’re batman helps nobody. If you’re going to be dumping somebody, at least find a plausible excuse to spare his or her feelings with, rather than being totally transparent in your words. Examples of bad excuses include:
“It’s not you, it’s me.”
“I’m just not feelin’ it.”
“I’m going to Narnia and there’s only room for one in the wardrobe.”
“It’s not me, it’s you.”
“I’m emotionally preparing myself for the Zombie Apocalypse.”
“I’m secretly dating someone from *insert foreign country here*.”
“I need to find myself.”
“My mom hates you.”
“I’m secretly dating a fictional character.”
“I have commitment issues. With you.”
“I’m moving to Yemen.”
2) “Let’s Be Friends” Breakups
It’s the kiss of death. You’re sitting there after a highly emotional breakup, trying to salvage as much dignity as you possibly can. Then, suddenly, the words leave the mouth of the person you’ve spent so much time with as he/she pats your shoulder condescendingly. “We’re better off as friends.”
With that final phrase, your dignity is destroyed like last years’ MCAS test booklet come June.
Sure, friendship is great. Maybe you started off as friends. Maybe you just formed a really great camaraderie while you were dating. But to hear someone say immediately after a breakup that they’d rather be your friend than date you is almost worse than name calling, yelling, or anything else they could throw at you.
Perhaps you two will be buddies in the future (maybe not), but the sting of that one patronizing comment can stay with a person for a long time. For the record, we’ve included a list of movie couples who started off as “just friends” and were able to make their relationship go the distance:
Harry and Sally from When Harry Met Sally
Ron and Hermione from Harry Potter
Matt and Jenna from 13 Going on 30
Pocahontas and John Smith from Pocahontas.
Dylan and Jamie from Friends With Benefits
Baby and Johnny from Dirty Dancing
Basically every single romantic comedy movie ever made. Seriously. Don’t even contest that because you will lose.
3) Text Message Breakups
We get it. Smashing somebody’s heart into millions of little pieces is no fun for anyone. However, breaking up over text message is not only rude, but cowardly. Quit the craven and get out of your haven- there are some things you can’t hide from. For a little bit of help with being as classy as you possibly can be while dumping your significant other, we’ve included a list of situations in which it is appropriate to breakup with that person over text message:
Don’t even try it.
Not in a million years.
4) Holiday Breakups
Picture this: snow falls mystically from the sky as lights glitter enticingly in windows, or the leaves of fall dance around your head making a colorful halo to accompany you to your splendid Thanksgiving face-stuffing fest. Or, you wake up excitedly on the morning of your birthday, excited to see all of the fantastic birthday wishes from your close friends and family. Then, suddenly, BAM!!
“We need to breakup.”
Holidays: they’re the most wonderful time of the year, just not for relationships.
For your handy breaking-up needs, we’ve supplied a list of acceptable holidays for breakups:
National Mean Girls Day
April Fool’s Day (although we’d strongly advise against this, as it may have the opposite effect of what you desire)
St. Patrick’s Day (with the exception of people who are Irish, redheads, or leprechauns.)
Don’t break up with someone on Valentine’s Day. Seriously, just don’t do it. Just don’t.
5) Shallow Breakups
Appearances are important. Everybody knows it, and nobody can deny it. It’s not something that anybody can really escape from. Personality is more important than looks, but they are both taken into consideration in relationships. Still, some of the worst breakups come from people who can’t get past the littlest things that dominate people’s outer shells. Although these splits can be petty and vapid, we can all see the reason behind them. Yet the worst thing is when somebody actually lets the person know the stupid reason that their relationship is being exterminated for. So next time you want to put an end to a relationship, make sure that it is for a valid reason. Non valid reasons include (but are not limited to):
A large nose
Slightly yellow teeth
The occasional ugly sneeze
Height (too tall, too short, or mediocrity are all included)
Some breakups, though, end happily. For example, Ms. Costello’s high school boyfriend broke it off with her to be with her best friend. Years later, she was the maid of honor at their wedding.
It may seem awkward and painful now, but soon, you too will be on your way to a far too stressful and overly expensive wedding of your own.
If you want to end a breakup in the most amicable way possible, follow our insightful, albeit slightly biased tips. Happy dumping!
Duke’s Dating Disasters:
1) Ms. Ducolon was broken up with by her boyfriend, over email, because he wanted to go film Star Wars movies in the woods and he didn’t think that they shared the same goals.
2) Another time, Ms. Ducolon dated a teacher who was a football Coach in Pittsfield, MA. During games, he would get extremely outraged at the referee’s calls. One such outburst resulted in a suspension for three games. He called her that night, told her he was in a bad place, that he needed to gather himself, and then promptly broke up with her. This man was 32.
3) One day, Ms. Ducolon was walking into Wal-Mart with a boyfriend, who lightly commented that he liked her new jeans. She was all ready to thank him but, unfortunately, he kept going, telling her that they were much better than the pair she usually wore. He continued on, telling her that the other jeans “make your body look weird.” Ms. Ducolon retorted that maybe he ought to watch what he said, causing this man to take offense and tell her that she needed a thicker skin. They broke up right outside of Wal-Mart to the amusement of several other customers.