I blame my mother.
Not directly, mind you, but Carol allowed me to watch far too many episodes of the Young and the Restless and the Bold and the Beautiful during my formative years. Though I knew I was already young, I aspired to being not only restless but also bold and beautiful in my later years. My Barbies had vicious cat fights over Ken, had torrid love affairs and kissed while they fell, as one giggling and girly entity, onto the bed (thank god my imagination could only stop where the filming stopped as well). Apparently those impressions as a chubby child also leave traces in the recesses of your mind; my reality of love is based on what those beautifully airbrushed and softly lit women of daytime TV showed me to be, and my breakup style, though never broaching on violent, has most certainly proven to show traces of psychotic, vindictive qualities.
The breakup is an art form, not something to be rushed through but to be cherished as a moment in your life when you have the choice to show your truly compassionate nature to the person from whom you are moving forward. I've always preferred a more, shall we say, direct approach. Instead, I looked to my idols Nikki Newman and Brooke Logan for a nice, dramatic breakup, the kind that you might be able to look back on one day and entertain others with a blog post (or hang your head in shame).
Courtney's Techniques: 12 Ways to Breakup w/ Someone You Only Marginally Like
1. Be able to say calmly and steadily, "it's not me, it's you". Seriously. Let's just be a little honest here. If it was me, would I have a problem?
I dated a guy who was all fun and games until it dawned on me that the binge drinking was nightly, the casual drug use was more along the lines of the "8 glasses of water a day" rule, and who was positively giddy about our spa nights where we would share anti-aging products and drink wine. The Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence called, and they want their closeted gay poster boy back. He got all misty when I broke the news, but immediately shook it off for fear of ruining his subtle, yet perfectly placed eyeliner.
2. Stop answering your phone. I dated a foreign exchange student (ok, a couple) in high school, and one in particular just started to get on my nerves after about 10 days from the initial, forbidden makeout session. Here are the paraphrased messages:
"Hi Courtney, this is Santi. Just calling to say hello and see what you are up to tonight. Uhhh...call me."
"Hi Courtney, this is Santi. What are you up to? I have tickets to go see a movie and I'm bored. Uhhhh...give me a call."
"Courtney, where are you? I bet you're out with your mum. Call me! This is Santi."
"Are you just going to ignore me? Haha! This is Santi."
"I'm going to the movie. If you call me I won't be home."
"Uhhh...so I guess you don't want to talk to me."
"Courtney, if you don't want to see me anymore, just tell me."
"Fine. *muffled sniff*"
See how the answering machine did all of the work? Silence, my friends, can be golden.
3. Tell him to go fuck himself via Facebook wall. Alright. This wasn't technically a breakup maneuver, but it pretty well sealed the deal. Those residual "should I? shouldn't I?" feelings? Once you publicly embarrass him, there's really no going back. Good for you, good for him, good for all of your mutual Facebook friends.
I once received a bouquet of flowers delivered to my door with a note that read, "I miss you and the cats...I miss the cats more". WHAT. THE. FUCK. How do you top that? To be honest, you can't, and I wish I had thought of it first. My response, via Facebook wall (and I remember it clearly though it was many years ago): "Dear Asshole, I cordially invite you to GO FUCK YOURSELF". Within ten minutes of that post, not only was my account blocked, but so were the accounts of all of my friends and all of my family. Boo hoo, dickhead.
4. Pick a fight and throw everything he has ever wronged you with back in his face. After reminding him of what a bad person he was and exactly why he would probably spend the rest of his miserable life alone, I relished in grabbing my chunky peanut butter (the lone object of mine at his house) out of the fridge, slamming the door, and riding away with a big chip on my shoulder and my 60L duffel on my back, Adams in the side basket. I hope the PB gap in his refrigerator reminded him daily of the black hole in his heart.
5. Leave in the middle of the night. Don't forget to steal any pot he has.
6. Show up at a party and make out with his frat bro (preferably he is there to witness). Done and done! This is an oldy but a goody, and it's not like those Sigma Chi guys have more than the brain capacity of a goldfish as it is. Sorry, creep, but you've been making out with a 17 year old high schooler. That what you get!
7. Let his friends do the work for you. Tell his pals (3 to 4 should suffice) that you are planning to ditch, then sit back and wait for 2 weeks until he gets wind and dumps you first. This works best if you are in high school or have an incestuously close group of friends in college. In fact, it pretty much only works when you are young because by the time you hit your mid-twenties no one cares what you do anymore. Good ol' Sean was the unfortunate test dummy for this technique, and for no reason other than his good attitude. The real problem was that he was so nice, and who can let someone down when they are so nice? I can.
8. Disappear. It's not that hard to do, honestly. Remove your voicemail message so it's generic, go private on Facebook, avoid bars and restaurants for awhile, and maybe consider that this would be a good time to go on vacation. Once he figures it out you'll be long gone.
9. Have a freak out. Come to a realization about yourself that you have to "take time" to figure out. You could be changing sexual orientation, finding or losing religion, faking the imminent loss of a family member...you decide. Sadly, the neurosis you fake will likely become the neurosis you have (commitment issues, anyone?).
10. Tell him "good luck" and don't look back as you walk away. DON'T. LOOK. BACK.
11. Get drunk and make a complete ass out of yourself. This is unattractive and no one wants to deal with it. We're talking smeared mascara, hysterical tears, exposing your bits, puking, and getting kicked out of the bar. I ended up in Mill Creek stumbling through the reservoir and trying to walk this path back to my parent's house, blackout drunk at 1am (I made it home by 4:30am after a short nap in a front yard and a pathetic phone call to my bestie, Elliot). Meanwhile, my "date" ended up in his bed with his phone turned off by 1:15a. Warning: hangover-induced loneliness will be about 10 times worse than usual, because you'll feel like you made a complete ass of yourself (because, well, you did).
12. Throw things. When in doubt, destroy property. It's a crazy bitch thing to do but you'll be out of there in no time (and never invited back). When feeling dramatic, finding the family heirloom, precious gift, or treasured item that you two brought back from your beach vacation to the Oregon coast and hurling it at the wall or out of the window onto the hood of his car is the ideal way to finally end it. Pros: You maintain no sense of dignity or poise and he has to pay for something to be fixed. Cons: You will forever wish you destroyed more.
The inspiration for this post comes from a heartfelt place...hopefully I will not be going through another breakup. Ben and I have decided to cohabitate in peace and love, so we'll see how that goes (if anything I'm sure I will have more material-sorry, dear). If you would like to send a congratulatory cake (no submissions but carrot will be accepted), please mail it to:
Cardboard Box #409
Moses Lake, Wa.
I like cream cheese frosting. Don't try to get fancy with it, either.