Gracefully Bowing Out vs. Cutting Off
Almost as important as “How do you begin your relationships?” is the exact opposite inquiry, and the one that most people don’t really want to think about nearly as much. For our own sanity and safety’s sake, we have to understand what works for each of us, when it’s time to know: How do you end your relationships?
1. Just stop calling and returning their calls? And even delete their number?
2. Passive-aggressive cynical emotional poison until your partner explodes?
3. Dramatic screaming match in some public location, with you stomping out triumphantly?
4. One-word or one-sentence text messages at 2 in the morning on a Saturday night?
5. Get a friend to do it for you?
6. Go on a little vacation to make one last beautiful memory together… then break up the day you get home?
7. Lie about something that is heartbreaking to your partner, and will cause them to leave you?
8. Cheat with another person you have always wanted to hook up with, and just not hide it?
9. Do something irresponsible enough to have your partner call it a dealbreaker and leave?
10. Request something dangerous to happen between you (e.g., a threesome) and use it as an excuse for getting feelings you didn’t want to confess were already there before the event?
11. Sleep with their brother/sister/mother/father/someone else taboo?
12. Change your Facebook status from “In A Relationship” to “Single” and let them figure it out?
13. Get physically violent and/or verbally abusive to unleash all your pent-up anger and frustration at the failure of the relationship?
Hopefully, none of the above. But they ALL happen. And in polyamory, where relationships can start extremely quickly, get deep extremely quickly, and then end faster than you can say “primary partner”, a person should know how to communicate their truth directly and completely, and also know how to SET BOUNDARIES. And END CONNECTIONS. If need be.
If someone lies to you about their age or their health or their marital status or other pertinent information like that, then you might be in the unfortunate position of having to say “goodbye for now, good soul” and make separation happen, for the sake of maintaining the health and happiness of all your other polyamorous relationships. But when do you know it’s time to say “peace, blessings and namaste” for an indefinite if not infinite period of time? Your heart knows. Your soul knows. Your truth knows.
Once, I had to just tell a lover: “we can still be friends, but I can’t continue having a sexual relationship with you.” And it was the best ending I can think of in quite some time. She understood why (long story, trust me) and she accepted my change of heart with little resistance or confrontation. It was just a connection that definitely had met its untimely demise, and I couldn’t pretend for one more embrace that I was in any position to keep giving myself to her. So I told her directly, and she accepted it.
No fuss, no muss. If I saw her on the street today, we could exchange pleasantries. This is the healthy way to change/end a relationship: do your best to create no more emotional turmoil, create no verbal violence, and create no negative residue. Also, say as LITTLE as you possibly can about your ex-boyfriend/ex-girlfriend/ex-lover as possible. Look forward, not backward. Speak up, not down. And seek healthy adjustments to your relationship connections, not unhealthy disasters that will leave you scarred, jaded, cynical and bitter about love and relationships in modern times. Too many people end their relationships in selfishly horrific ways, and can’t continue creating beautiful new ones because of the self-destructive ways they keep perpetually slaughtering the memory of the person they shared their former relationships with!
A healthy couple can have a peaceful breakup, and still be friends in the future. Trust me!!!
And I do believe: if they are polyamorous, the chances of them being friends and maybe even lovers again in the future is quite a bit higher!
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It was the best of times, it was the worst of times.
It was also the perfect time to learn what hurts inside…