There comes a time in most relationships when we know we need to call things off. Whether it's a long-term partnership that has reached its natural conclusion or a few dates that clearly aren't going anywhere, we see the end in sight and we can't ignore it any longer.
But in some cases, when the moment comes to sack up and pull the plug, we'll tell ourselves a series of fibs in order to get out of going through the inevitable pain. Here are a few of them, in order of occurrence:
This is how the lies begin. The gnawing feeling in the pit of your stomach that you try to ignore, the nagging in the back of your mind telling you that this person will eventually be gone from your life; it all gets shoved to the side with the insistence that everything is totally fine.
But everything is probably not fine.
This won't hurt a bit
Once you accept the inevitable, you may also tell yourself that you will feel no pain when the moment of truth finally comes. It's the right decision, you remind yourself, so it will be easy! You will run from the relationship straight into the arms of another, or you will be set free to do exactly as you please, or your mind will be loosed from the bonds that held it stagnant and so every other part of your life – work, family, friends – will fill in the gaps that your lover leaves behind.
I'll do it next week
Unfortunately, “this won't hurt a bit” doesn't last very long, and so it's followed rapidly by the insistence that the dirty deed will get done within the next few days, or weeks, or months. It's just that so many things are happening between now and then: a birthday, a holiday, a Tuesday.
He/She will thank me
This is a fleeting, passing lie that only really pops up during the most delusional of moments, but pop up it does. As you try to wrench yourself out of “I'll do it next week,” you might also delude yourself briefly into believing that everyone in the relationship feels the way you do, and that by mustering the courage to end things, you'll be lauded as a hero. Neither harm nor foul will be felt on either end!
But this scenario is uncommon at best, and you'll eventually have to deal with the final falsehood…
The worst is over
The deed is done. The break-up has gone down. Tears have been shed, details worked out, boxes packed. After all of the final moments have been felt, all the decisions made, it seems like things can only go up.
But in fact, once you've moved, or moved on, or begun again – particularly if the relationship was long-term or involved a level or serious commitment – you may very well find that what you thought was the worst part of it was actually the easiest. Cleaning house and beginning anew in the face of absolute uncertainty might be, in some ways, more difficult than the split itself.
In other words — and we hate to be the ones to say it — just when you think it's all over, it's only begun.