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The Break-Up

February 2012
Written by: Dame Wotta Tripp

How To Break Up With Somebody

Your feelings have changed, maybe a little, maybe a lot, but you no longer feel the same about your lover.

You might not even be able to figure out what you ever saw in them any longer.

The noise they make eating cereal, that inane nervous giggle, their appalling taste in dress socks, the irritating lack of concentration they display when driving, the ridiculous face they make when - well, never mind.

Suffice it to say you fully believe the time has come to move on without them.

Unless you are cruel and unprincipled then this is bound to be a difficult task. In order to seek the happiness you are entitled to you have to crush someone else's hopes and dreams.

Never easy, Dame Wotta Tripp has prepared some handy break-up etiquette to help you cope:

Face to face. Do not end your relationship with an email, text message or phone call. Whether your relationship is three weeks or thirty years old, show enough respect for the person you are about to leave to meet them face to face and look them straight in the eye when you tell them it's over.
The right time. Choose a time when you will have long enough to explain properly and humanely that it's over. Don't do it before a special occasion or on an important day or anniversary. Make sure you are sober. It's crucial that your almost-ex is as well. Of course, if you're ending it because they're never sober anyway, you'll just have to manage as best you can to get them to comprehend what you're attempting to impart to them. It will sink in eventually.
The right place. Pick a private location in which to deliver your bombshell. Telling someone it's over in a bar, club or at a party is just plain wrong. So is mentioning it casually while travelling on or in a bus, cab or any other form of public transport. You should make sure it's somewhere secluded, but easy for your ex to get home from. A nearby park, or a very private coffee shop is an option. Make sure you get up and go first, leaving the money to cover both your drinks on the table. Of course, you could deliver the fatal blow to them in their own home. This might be easier for them, and maybe for you too, and you should leave fairly soon after breaking the bad news. Do not have sex with them first to say goodbye! This never works out well. If you live together, then of course you should tell them in your own home.

The right demeanour. A straightforward, honest, compassionate attitude is called for in this situation. Be gentle and patient, but very firm. Do not give in to hysterics or threats. If there is a possibility of violence from either you or they, walk away, or arrange to make an exception and tell them the bad news over the phone, explaining to them why you felt you had to do so.
Be honest. Do give them an honest reason or reasons why you have changed your mind about the relationship. Try and be tactful. Note: If you're leaving because the money's finally run out, perhaps you should be brutal so that your former partner doesn't ruin their life by making the same mistake and becoming a victim all over again.
Don't be cruel or insulting. Avoid trying to hurt the other person while you're breaking up, and afterwards too. Don't gossip about what happened between you to mutual friends. Keep things private and keep your self-respect. Do not discuss any of it or post the information on Facebook or anywhere else on the internet - you usually can't take it back, and you will regret it later on.
Dealing with emotions. Expect shock, pain, anger, grief, injuries and disbelief. The longer you've been together, the longer it will take to sink in. Don't become completely cold or withdrawn. It's OK to offer comfort and say a proper and respectful goodbye. Don't deny any love or affection still in existence. Once you've said goodbye you should leave. There's no good reason to prolong the initial agony. If your partner threatens violence, leave immediately.
Don't give in to emotional blackmail or threats. You and you alone are responsible for your life, unless you are in government care or underage, in which case please leave this site immediately. If you know it's right to end it, then you must do so for your future happiness, which it is your birthright to pursue. Your ex-partner will have to come to terms with this and find their own way to happiness and possible new love.

All Broken Up!
That Awful Guilt!
But just think how much worse it might be to stay with someone that you no longer care for in the same way that you once did.

Who knows what could happen down the road? Prison is not something most people look forward to.

If you did the best you could and broke up with your partner as gently as possible then there is no need to feel guilty.

Life is not always pleasant, but it isn't wrong to extricate yourself from a relationship that no longer serves either partner well and to which you are no longer committed.

How To Deal With Being Dumped
Perhaps you are the one who is going to be let down in which case you will have to deal with the pain and loneliness as best you can.

Keep Your Dignity - You'll Be Glad You Did Later On!
If you can keep your dignity when you discover it's over, you will be very glad you did later on.

The image of you being hauled down the tarmac on your stomach in front of the neighbours while hanging on desperately with both hands to your errant ex-lovers right ankle as they try to drag themselves down the road is a memory which will not fade quickly for anyone who was present for the debacle.

It's over. It's final. The break-up you've been dreading has happened, and you're single again.

You may be seriously heartbroken. You may be relieved. You may be a little of both.

You might just be ecstatically happy to be free, but I don't think so, or you wouldn't be seeking Dame Wotta Tripp's excellent advice.

How do you begin to recover from such a blow? It's very difficult, but it will take place. Time really does heal, it's just that it does so much more slowly than most people would like it to.

As painful and overwhelming as it all is, there will be life after your ex-lover, and most likely another love later on. Of course, at such a painful time nothing could be further from a ditched and humiliated lovers mind.

Get rid of reminders. Throw away the photographs, the love-notes and letters, the unwashed underwear and the fingernail clippings. You won't be needing any of them in your new life unless you are considering taking up the Dark Arts, in which case you will require proper training first anyway.
Keep a journal. A seemingly small thing to do, recording your dreams, inner feelings and observations about life in general is a very good idea. It's surprising how much we forget as time passes us by. It can reap the greatest of rewards and benefits later on, whether you wish to check the progress of your emotional healing or blackmail somebody.
Remember that everybody changes, and that relationships evolve too. Sometimes they change so much that the previously seemingly unbreakable bonds are severed. It's painful, but it's a part of life. You may feel broken-hearted, but you are still intrinsically you, like a virgin cocktail, shaken but intact!
Having a strong support group will certainly help you to cope with your newly single status. Having people available to talk to and shoulders to cry on is very important. Make sure you let the people you love know how much their support means to you. Reach out to those you previously ignored because you put your dying relationship first for the last five years or so. Apologize and add just a little grovel, to taste. You need all the help you can get to feel whole again. Keep busy if you can.
The internet is a good place to talk to others who are going through similar break-ups. Join an online support group. Talk in a chat room with others who are experiencing similar distress. It really does help, and you may find yourself comforting someone else. This will help you both heal. Dame Wotta Tripp does not recommend that you join one of the seedy internet revenge groups that sully the fair bandwidth of our merry web, ensuring you do not rack up even more bad-relationship points and so earn the equivalent of a karmic black star on your achievement chart.
Don't stay in alone every night, especially not drinking. You will only feel lonely and unloved. It may not be easy, but get ready and go out for a night with the guys or girls instead.
Tackle the 'first times'. Everything seems very strange at first, All the things that you used to do together you now have to stop doing, or do alone. The first time you see friends or family alone, go shopping, celebrate a birthday, have a walk, come home to an empty apartment after an evening out - you get the general idea. Work through them slowly, one at a time. It will get better as time moves you rapidly away from the event, Dame Wotta Tripp promises you.
Have a change of scene - a short holiday or even a weekend away can work wonders. Don't go to the same old places you went to with your ex. Give yourself an outing to look forward to for you alone, but that doesn't mean you have to be alone. Go with a friend and make a few new memories. Take a camera and capture the highpoints, as long as they are fit to record. That way you can see the proof of you having a life without your old love. It's all over, passé, and the situation can only improve from now on, ups and downs notwithstanding.
Decorate. Creating a fresh environment in your personal living space can completely change the way you feel. Select a new and exciting color scheme and paint away the old. Buy some couch throws and cushions in contrasting colors. Treat yourself to new bedding and a couple of small cheerful rugs. A few brightly colored coffee mugs to drink from will help change the mood. Colored glass vases full of flowers along with two or three new house-plants should give everything an inexpensive and brand new look to help you start over with fewer reminders.
Don't rush into a new relationship, even if the opportunity arises. Give yourself plenty of time to get over the previous one. If you are supposed to be with someone in particular, then they will still be there when you are ready to begin again.

Try and appreciate both old and novel experiences. Develop a few new interests and follow them up. Think about your remaining blessings and the people still in your life that you care about.

Take some time out to enjoy life and re-connect with nature. Do a little volunteer work. Drink some beer. Invite friends over for a potluck. Play darts at your local pub. Watch comedies. Babysit for friends. Join a paranormal group and go ghost-hunting. Attempt sky-diving. Life is full of opportunities. Grasp them firmly by the nucha and enjoy!
Seek the help you so desperately need in more of Dame Wotta Tripp's Night Letters! 
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Dame Wotta Tripp gives her usual sterling relationship advice, this time regardingt how to deal with the dreaded and inevitably painful break-up.




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