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The end to the beginning
It was the end of August of 2012, and my boyfriend was leaving me to go into the military. We were high school sweethearts. I met him my freshmen year; he was a junior. The first time I saw *Kyle, he was in the hallway, during the three-minute passing time. I was walking with my friend when I saw him from afar before deciding to talk with him.
About two months later we were on the verge of being boyfriend and girlfriend. During the beginning stages of dating, every day we learned something new about each other. From favorite colors, food, drinks, and hobbies to close friends, family, and future dreams. My parents didn’t allow me to date boys, let alone talk to boys on the phone until I was 18, so in the beginning, we only saw each other at school, and I would use my friends’ phone during class to text him. After a while, I would sneak to use my phone to text him, and he would sneak out to see me. I lived 45-minutes away from him, and we would only spend about 30-minutes together at the park before I had to head back home. We always kept in contact and informed each other what was going on in our lives even after I changed schools.
Forming a deep connection
During my next three years in high school, Kyle’s and I conversations began to get more in-depth. We talked about life, goals, future living situations, college, family, and marriage. I loved who he was as a person. He made sure I had everything I needed and sometimes, wanted. He made me his priority, treated me like a queen, and did everything a man is supposed to do in a relationship.
The best part was that we took it slow. We were more of best friends than boyfriend and girlfriend. The fact that we got to be close to each other in a loving way was just a bonus. He never pressured me to do anything that I didn’t want to do. We gave each other advice, could vent, and clear our mind from the outside world that caused stress. If we had issues, we communicated. Communication was huge in our relationship because we didn’t see each other often. Mentally and emotionally the connection between us two was thick and robust.
Towards the end of my junior year, is when Kyle told me he was going to join the Air Force. “I want to be able to provide for you without you having to ask your parents” was one of the reasons why he chose to go. Although I didn’t care about materialistic things, I understood. I was hurt because I was almost 18, which meant we didn’t have to sneak around anymore. I didn’t want to hide our relationship or how much he meant to me to my family and friends. As the days grew closer for him to leave, we spent almost every day together. We talked about how we could try a long-distance relationship. Eventually, he went to basic training. I had no way of contacting him, only through writing letters. After basic training, he came back for two weeks before being deployed overseas.
Our last day together, I decided we should break up. I was almost done with my senior year of high school and would be heading to college a couple of months later. I figured with him spending four years overseas and myself spending four years as an undergrad; it would be best for us to go our separate ways to find ourselves individually and understand who we were.
We could continue being friends, and when we completed our task, if it’s meant to be we would be. It was a hard decision. I spent a lot of time thinking about the possibilities of how we could make it work but also wanted to be realistic. He was my first serious boyfriend, so it wasn’t fair to me if I didn’t give myself an opportunity to grow outside of him. When I told Kyle my thoughts, he disagreed. He believed it was a bad idea, and that we should stay together. Although it broke my heart to see him beg me not to let go of us, I had to. And so, I did.
The art of breaking up
Breaking up with someone you love can be painful, especially if you spent years getting to know the person. Whether you’ve been with your significant other for years or months, it can be difficult, and emotional letting go the one you love. The pain is indescribable. The best way I can describe it is like having a headache with an adrenaline rush. You’re not sure how it’s going to go, you don’t want to do it, but need to, and you’re filled with every emotion. Not only are you thinking about your feelings, but also how he/she may react and feel.
Why break up?
There are many reasons why someone may need/want to break up with someone he/she loves. In my case, it was because I needed to discover who I wanted to be, live freely by being okay with making mistakes, and explore different opportunities. I knew that living on campus could help me determine what I liked and what I didn’t like. Having a boyfriend in college could hinder my growth by limiting the things I may want to do. Because I loved him, I didn’t want to go throughout life resenting him or think about “what if.” Over the years people change, and it’s important to respect that. Although it hurt us both, I had to do what was best for me.
Steps to consider
When deciding to break up with someone, you need to make sure it is for a good reason. If you’re choosing to break up with someone because you need to find yourself, you should make that very clear to your significant other. Before doing so, take the necessary time to think about your decision and how you want to go about communicating it to your significant other.
• You should state why you think you guys should break up.
• You should express how you feel.
• You should be aware of the tone that is being used. Speak with love. Proverbs 15:1 NIV says, “A gentle answer turns away wrath, but a harsh word stirs up anger.”
• You should be aware of the other person’s thoughts and feelings.
• If you’re unsure about your decision, talk with someone you trust.
• Consider your feelings, but be realistic and logical.
• Be firm in your decision
• Try to end things in a proper term, if possible.
Kyle and I are friends to this day. We were able to talk about the breakup and how far we’ve come since then. We agreed that the break up was a smart decision but hard to accept because we were in love. In the process, I discovered my true self, recognize my self-worth, and applied past experiences to my present for a better future.
**-These names are made up to protect identity.