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You all know the song, and I’m sure it began running through your heads the minute you read the title, but I’ll refresh your memory just for the sake of it: “Oh, breakin’ up is hard to doo-ooo...” Fortunately, that’s all I know of the song. It would be easy to discredit that lyric as a stupid 80s pop riff, but that song was written for a reason, and it says something absolutely essential about relationships, and deals, in its own pop-ey way, with an issue that no one wants to think about, especially when you’re in the throes of a seemingly perfect relationship. Breaking up. Those two, rather metaphorical words that strike fear in the heart of every dater out there. And if it doesn’t, you should probably re-asses the status of your relationship at the moment.
Of course, the magnitude at which these two little words inflict pain is dependent upon the type of relationship you’re in. If it’s a sort of casual, laissez-faire relationship, you probably aren’t too worried about the prospect. However, if it’s a relationship where you’re beginning to pick out wedding dresses and music for when you walk down the aisle, the phrase probably has much more fearsome implications. The rather unpleasant fact is, there is no way to really predict how, where, and when relationships will end. Of course, sometimes it’s quite obvious, expected, and occasionally a relief when it occurs, but it can also be a complete shock, and come totally out of left field.
I’ve had plenty of both kinds of breakups; the expected and the not-so-expected. Both are difficult in their own right, and often times, both of them leave you wondering exactly what happened. Sure, there have been a few times where either I spoke with the “ex” and from that pieced together the story of the demise, or I have put the pieces together myself, but usually, I’m still left feeling puzzled, not really knowing why or how we were no longer an item.
In college, breakups can be particularly difficult. There is enough stress already from the intense workload and from the different experience of living away from home, but when you wrap yourself up in a relationship, and then have it collapse, it’s easy to feel guilty, to feel like a failure. I’m certainly not an expert on how to deal with breakups, and I certainly haven’t gotten very good at “dealing” yet, but I do know this: if it’s over, it’s probably going to stay over, and if you happen to get back together again somewhere down the road, it will happen. Trying to pull strings or resuscitate something that needs its own time to heal and change is totally futile, and a waste of energy in my opinion. Of course it’s difficult, of course it can be painful, of course you can cry, and of course he can too. But, after you’ve broken up, it’s best to move on, pick up the pieces, and let life take its course.
I’m a strong believer in letting whatever happens occur on its own; usually when products come from force, they end up collapsing again, because they weren’t reconstructed or resumed in earnest. There’s always another part of the puzzle missing, however small it may be, and it tends to be the piece the relationship needs to stay standing.
Life in college is hard enough; you don’t need to have it be any tougher!
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