Carrie Bradshaw once said, “There is a good way to end a relationship; and it doesn’t involve a post-it.”
There were a few other things she added during a rant she bestowed upon her ex-boyfriend’s friends at a club one night after they defended Burger’s break-up “post-it”, but I am here to go on my own rant. Er, I mean, tell you how I feel about this topic.
I felt the best way to do this is to tell you the story about my worst break-up experience, and how it could have been better handled on his end.
It was about 6 years ago by the hand of my ex-boyfriend. We’ll call him Kyle (name’s have been changed to protect the un-innocent).
Kyle and I were young and in love, and constantly talked about our future. About a year and a half into our relationship, we had a serious talk about getting married. We were still pretty young, but we did the math and realized that even though it would be difficult, it was still do-able.
One day, I was at work when I got a Facebook message from an anonymous person (no picture) who wrote nothing apart from, Your boyfriend is cheating on you. I felt my stomach drop. Although a part of me couldn’t conceive this possibility for a second, another part of me thought it had to be true. A friend at work told me to confront the mystery person, so I wrote back and told her I didn’t believe her. She offered me a list of names and told me Kyle had been with all of these women.
Unable to make sense of what was going on, a friend told me to contact one of the girls. Calmly. So I did. I picked a random girl from the list (let’s call her Jen) and sent her a Facebook message explaining to her the situation; in a non-psychotic way. Jen wrote back explaining she had no idea who Kyle was. When I asked Kyle about it, he swore that he had no idea who Jen was either. I believed him, so I decided to chalk it up to some crazy person on FB.
That next weekend, Kyle and I went shopping and decided to check out some engagement rings while we were out. We were just browsing to see what I liked/what was affordable, but it was still a huge deal to me.
After a great weekend together, I completely forgot all about “Jen”. Then Monday came around. I was sitting in class at around 5 pm, and I received an e-mail from Jen. She went on to tell me about how horribly guilty she felt. How she had lied to me about not knowing Kyle and that she did, in fact, sleep with him a couple of weeks earlier. I felt like I was hit in the gut. I didn’t know what to do, I just knew I had to leave class.
I told her I didn’t believe her still, so she proceeded to send me evidence. She e-mailed me pictures Kyle and her had sent back and forth to each other, forwarded me e-mail correspondences in which he told her he had a girlfriend, and she even showed me an e-mail where he begged her not to tell me what was going on, that he would give her whatever she wanted to stop. My blood ran cold. Who the hell was I dating?
Kyle’s office was only a few blocks from my school, so I shot him a text to tell him what was going on and that I was coming to his office. It was February in New York, and it was freezing. When I got to his office I banged on the door and shoved my phone in his face, making him look at a half-naked picture of himself. He grimaced, and told me he would be out in 5 minutes to talk to me.
I waited for 2 hours, in the snow, until he finally came outside. He walked out of the office building, looking me dead in the eyes and said, “It’s all true, I’m a horrible person. Have a nice life.” He walked away and I literally never heard from him again.
Now, what would have been the right way to end this relationship?
I’m going to start by saying, an apology. If you’ve cheated on someone, even if you don’t want to be with them anymore, you apologise. You explain to them why you did what you did, and you try your best to let them know that they didn’t deserve to be cheated on. You answer any question they ask, you don’t walk away from them like a coward and refuse to face what you’ve done.
But the real right way to end this relationship, would have been to end it before the cheating ever began.
So have that “uncomfortable break-up talk” with your significant other. At least in the end you’ll know you did the right thing, and hopefully you’ll both be able to move on in a healthy way.
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