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Pull The Band-Aid: Why Breaking Up Over A Text Is Actually Okay

Pull The Band-Aid: Why Breaking Up Over A Text Is Actually Okay

BY Christopher Gramuglia

Pull The Band-Aid: Why Breaking Up Over A Text Is Actually Okay

For some strange reason, most people think there’s a certain type of etiquette or code of conduct that needs to be followed during a breakup.

According to them, there’s a specific way you should go about telling her you’re not interested anymore. If you don’t follow the rules, then any chance of staying on good terms is lost and she’ll forever remember you as an asshole who broke her heart.

It’s a very unfair amount of pressure to put on any guy, and doesn’t exactly jive with the idea of a breakup.

A breakup is a request that you no longer see each other in a romantic or intimate way, and when you part ways with a woman, it could be for any number of reasons. One thing is for sure: you’ve made your decision and now you have to do something about it.

Maybe you’re sick of the excessively long text messages she sends, or maybe she’s a drag to be around because she complains all the time. Whatever it is you have every right to end things in any way you choose. You don’t have to meet her in person, or go over to her apartment to tell her it’s over. The fact is, it’s your decision, and the way you do it isn’t up to her.

I recently ended things with a girl I was seeing because after a few months, I realized she just wasn’t any fun to be around. She must have sensed that things were coming to a close because she texted me, asking why I’d been so uncommunicative. So I wrote back that I didn’t think we we’re right for each other and that I wanted to stay friends.

That was a week ago, and I have yet to receive a response. I don’t know if she’s angry, or trying to save face by not answering, but the point is she’s not reacting to the separation like an adult.

My guess is that she’s upset that I didn’t set up a formal meeting to tell her I wasn’t interested anymore and instead delivered the message via text. But it makes me wonder: if things are over, why does it matter?

If you’ve decided to go through with a breakup, the way you tell her is completely your decision. There are varying levels of courtesy that you may feel you need to follow, but generally the choice is yours.

If you’ve been with someone for five years, you may want to put some effort into letting her know it’s over. But don’t let a girl you’ve only been out with a handful of times make you feel guilty for choosing a phone call or a text. You really don’t owe them anything.

It’s a double-standard. Girls are notorious for not answering texts or ending things with a guy without actually meeting with them face-to-face. No one likes awkwardness, so it’s understandable, but guys should be granted the same privilege. A break up conversation is never an easy one to have, so why make it harder?

The biggest criticism of a break-up text is that it’s inconsiderate or shows that you don’t care, but the only person who can really make that determination is you. If you don’t care about her and send a text that’s one thing, but if you do care and would just rather avoid an unnecessary sit-down at a Starbucks who is she to criticize you?

Once you know for sure that your relationship is unsalvageable, every second you wait to end it is stressful and feels contrived. She doesn’t know what’s coming and goes about her business with you as usual, while you keep your intentions hidden—it’s a big burden.

The harsh truth is that at the end of a relationship, you have to look out for yourself and your own well-being. If she chooses to label you as an asshole, or selfish that’s her issue.

What she’s really saying is that she’s bitter because she’s been dumped. It’s a normal human reaction, but shouldn’t deter you from finding the quickest, most painless way to make a clean break.

If you still feel traces of guilt for not giving the breakup enough attention, you can send her a text a few weeks later to see how she’s doing, but make sure that there is no implication that you want to get back together. She may take your follow-up text as a way of trying to patch things up, but that’s not what its about.

It should be a way of making sure that she’s handling things, so that you yourself can move forward without being bogged down by guilt. Getting dumped, whether you’re a guy or a girl, is a part of life, and we all need to get better at dealing with it.

Texting is a totally effective method of communication for almost any topic and was invented to make communicating easier. You can congratulate someone, give them your condolences or just say hi, yet there’s still a stigma over breaking up via text.

Not only should we accept this mode of communication during a break up, but it should be preferred. It keeps things simple, to the point and gets the job done quickly.

When you want to break up with someone, it’s a lot like yanking off a Band-aid: you just have to man up and do it or else it’ll never come off.

Rather than look for ways to make a break-up more complicated, we as a group of single guys (and girls) should be looking for ways to make it less stressful on ourselves. Also, nothing is ever truly set in stone. Breaking up with a text message doesn’t mean you will never re-connect.

If things change six months or a year later, you can always pick up where you left off, but for the time being if you feel that things aren’t working out, write her a message, hit send and hope for the best.

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Christopher Gramuglia

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Chris is a writer, photographer and holds a master's degree in creative writing. He is working on a novel about dating in the digital age, and is an expert on topics like social dynamics and how to navigate the modern dating scene.

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