Breaking up is never easy, and even though the dumper is often labeled as a heartless betrayer of dreams, chances are calling it quits with a text message is a way of attempting to minimize pain, not make it worse.
If your intention is that of making the breakup as easy as possible, both for yourself and the dumpee, sending a text, email or social message can understandably seem like the best option on the table.
And it is — at least initially.
But out of sight, does not always equate out of mind. Au contraire, it is usually the reverse that is true. Here are four solid reasons why I wouldn’t break up with a text message, but would instead bite the bullet and invest in a potentially turbulent face-to-face.
1. It Will Cause Resentment
If your objective is that of minimizing pain, detoxing and moving on — nothing will jeopardize your healing like a resentful ex. Nothing.
Anger and resentment are part-and-parcel of most breakups, even if (most especially if) you care deeply about each other. So, to some extent, it is to be expected. However, by not allowing your ex to channel their guilt, questions and shock, you won’t curb manipulation and anger, you will instead inflame them.
There is also the question of the ex feeling slighted by an ignoble and anti-climatic burial of such an important part of their lives.
Sure, when the connection is cut your life is your responsibility, and their feelings are theirs, and you have every right to seek greener pastures without compromising your needs. But bear in mind that an emotionally slighted ex will not let go, and may attempt to get you to go down with their ship (manipulation, fear, guilt, projection, e.t.c).
2. More Questions Than Answers
I almost always play-up the importance of a less is more mentality when it comes to relationships, but not with regards to breakups.
Unlike my first point, it isn’t anger or manipulation that I’m referring to here, rather, a more selfless goal. That of promoting long-term acceptance and peace in our exs by addressing as much of their insecurity as possible right at the get-go.
Although I don’t believe closure actually exists, I do believe that a ten minute face-to-face can save you both hours of communicative grief down the line. Leaving an ex to their own traumatized over-analysis, insecurities that could have been ironed out at the start can fester and grow exponentially over time.
3. It Will Help You Move On (Subconsciously)
It may seem counter-intuitive, but a final, lengthy face-to-face may well help you move on at a subconscious level (which is always far harder than doing so objectively).
As humans, we tend to categorize experiences such as relationships as a sequence of acts. By initiating a showdown, you are giving your internal wiring a resounding sense of finality. In short, it makes a primitive amount of subconscious sense, and helps propel your ailing ego in search of a new comfort zone that does not require the emotional validity of your ex.
If this line of reasoning sounds like tightly wired bull manure, I would defensively add that it also makes a degree of conscious sense, in that going through such an ordeal often incentivises us to keep on going through moments of fear, doubt and grief, because — well — what’s done is done.
Given the propensity for remorse, guilt and fear of abandonment that follows most breakups, irrespective of how unhappy we were in the past relationship, a measure of self-imposed finality is usually a good thing.
4. Stay Classy
This is, without any shadow of doubt, the most subjective of all my points. But as a dumpee, I would like to think that I am worth more than a simple fire-and-forget wish-you-well.
However, if you were manipulated, used, abused, or willfully taken for granted, any moralistic pretense your ex has regarding his/her sense of entitlement is quite obviously void.
But you might want to go ahead and do it anyway.Here’s why:
- To prevent feelings of guilt that can hinder long-term healing (this usually happens a few months after the breakup).
- Doing the right thing, if it is objectively the right thing to do, is reward enough.
- To accept their feedback. A breakup showdown is never only a one way process. There is always something to learn about oneself (even if it is buried beneath a mountain of trauma-borne hurt).
No matter what you decide I wish you all the best, and of course, should you have any criticisms, concerns or suggestions please feel free to make yourself hear in the comment section below.