At first, the intoxicating amount of time spent together was great. During the first month of romantic dates, invigorating conversations, and stimulating sleepovers (where we did anything but sleep), you’ll really make it seem like this “thing” could be going somewhere. But then a couple of months pass, and BAM! Suddenly you realize that whatever this is, isn’t working. Hey, nobody can fault you for cutting your losses before things got more serious. But as you navigate those rocky waters of letting someone down gently, here are some things you definitely shouldn’t do.
1. Don’t make them a mixed CD.
You’re not completely fault for this because everyone secretly loves to get a CD from the romantic interest in their life. The first time they listen to the CD, they’ll ooh and ahh over the over-sentimental indie tunes you picked. But unlike that Spotify playlist we can easily un-follow, that CD will lurk somewhere around their house, haunting them with your memory. And now every time Bon Iver comes on, they’ll think of you. Please don’t sully Justin Vernon’s mystical voice like that.
2. Don’t make room for them at your place.
There’s such a thing as being a good host, and by all means, if they’re sleeping over, let them feel comfortable, but don’t ask them to leave their toothbrush at your place, whether or not you spent the night together inseparably for the last couple of weeks. Don’t get me wrong, cavities are a bitch. But if you honestly don’t see things going anywhere, the idea of getting even a measley toothbrush back from the little space you made in your medicine cabinet makes a root canal sound pleasant.
3. Don’t introduce them to your friends
Don’t ask someone to meet your friends as “the next logical step in a relationship” even if you don’t see the “relationship” going anywhere. Because they will go to that dinner party and they will put on a smile and actually enjoy the company. That is, until the break-up. And then when they awkwardly run into Bobby Joe at a bar, a friend from your old business frat, they’ll be forced to have that awkward conversation that goes along the lines of, “Oh. Hey. Yeah, um, we aren’t seeing each other anymore. But I’ve got to run, I have a date with about 8 vodka sodas.”
4. Don’t splurge on “thoughtful presents.”
Even around Christmas or Valentine’s Day. At the time, the thoughtfulness of you getting them a present that early into dating is endearing. And you totally get gold stars for getting a gift that really is something that your paramour wants — especially if it’s something as convenient as a monthly subscription to a wine club or a makeup sample company. Maybe you didn’t think this one through though, but after the breakup you knew was coming, that box will still come in the mail… for a year. Your former flame will debate chucking it back in the postman’s face, but hey, if it’s wine, at least it’s something to forget you by.
5. Don’t share photos with family
If you know someone is on the outs, don’t send your parents photos of us. I know your love interest’s unmistakably good looks are hard not to brag about, but at some point, keeping a facade that everything is well and good just gets weird. Don’t post it to Facebook, don’t post it to Instagram just to put the sepia-filtered veneer that everything is fine. After you break up, you have to go through all of the trouble explaining to your entire feed that something went sour Yeah, I know. Tough break.