Breaking Up is Hard to Do!!

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(A simple way to let go with dignity)

“The hunger for love is much more difficult to remove than the hunger for bread.” Mother Teresa

If schools had offered a course called “Breaking up is hard to do”, I suspect we all would have enrolled. Why aren’t we taught these difficult challenges of living life? Some of the most guaranteed aspects of living life are NEVER discussed.  We fumble around with bad behavior trying to figure out how to act and just make things worse. Just as dying is a guarantee of living; breaking up most likely will be an option for being in a relationship. Breaking up doesn’t have to be devastating! I know many of you who have loyalty, responsibility, people pleasing, and fear of conflict issues may be thinking I have lost it. You can’t imagine ever being able to have a conversation with your partner called breaking up.

Because people don’t know how to breakup they do some version of the following:

couple1. Shut down

2. Pick fights

3. Bad boyfriend/girlfriend behavior

4. Criticize

5. Cold no affection with inane accompanying stories

6. Flirting with people other than your partner

7. Never available to talk

8. And other hurtful behaviors

Rather than what they should do:




If you are in a significant relationship you should be having the “how are we doing talk” once a week. If you haven’t been having that talk start today.

It is during these talks that you start to express the behaviors that you can’t accept. Being in a partnership is first about compromise and acceptance and second about making requests so you don’t build resentment. Resentment kills passion and everything good in a relationship. If you can’t accept something you need to let your partner know. This gives your partner a chance to change behavior in order to fight for the relationship. Just announcing that the relationship is over with no opportunity for your partner to fight for it is cruel and hurtful. So sit down with yourself and figure out what behavior by your partner you grumble about and can’t let go.  Affairs/cheating, drinking/drugging, gambling/ lying or any criminal behavior are the easy behaviors to identify as a reason to leave. The more subtle, yet insidious and destructive behaviors; different money philosophies, different parenting philosophies, lack of respect, emotional abuse, poor communication, “fell out of love”, “nothing in common”, quarreling all the time, depression/moods untreated, chronic illness untreated, emotional affairs with intruders, and on and on can also be reasons to leave. Some people will want to work on reaching a compromise and others will not. If you discuss your breakdowns ad nauseam everyone understands why breaking up might be an option and in some cases a relief. The surprise attack of “we’ve grown apart” with no prior conversations is cruel. Breaking up during a fight is just plain stupid. The “here is what isn’t working for me and it hasn’t changed “gives everyone the roadmap to where we are going or not going together. To be able to have these conversations you need my three tools of being able to say nomake requests and speak your truth.

If you want to learn more about these tools or ask questions listen in on Wednesday, July 23rd, 2014 10 am PST when I will be interviewed by Lori Lynn Smith on Passion Diva Radio at Please call in with questions at 347-637-3175 and hit 1 when prompted to do so. I look forward to speaking with you in person.

“No relationship can survive without trust, honesty, and communication, no matter how close you are.”


(c) Anne Brown 2014. Permission needed in all forms of reproduction.

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