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“The Breakup Shop believes everyone deserves to be single.” That’s according to the site of this new company that will to do the dirty work of ending your relationship for you—at a price, of course. For a mere $10, you can send a breakup email or text; fork over $20, and you’ve got yourself a breakup letter (customizable for an additional $10); and starting at $29, you can have another man or woman deliver a breakup phone call.
Sound harsh? That’s because it is. But the profit on pain is justified, according to The Breakup Shop co-founder Mackenzie (last name has been withheld per his request for anonymity) who spoke with Motherboard: “People are already paying services like Tinder to get them in a relationship, why not pay a service to get you out of one?”
The Breakup Shop even offers a gift shop for exes so you can ease your former girlfriend’s pain with a bouquet of daisies and carnations, a set of wine glasses, even The Notebook. But if you’d prefer not to put your hard-earned money toward enlisting a stranger to end your romance, use these tips from relationship expert Sarah Jones, founder and CEO of coaching website Introverted Alpha. It may not be the easy way out, but it’s way classier and you may even end up not hating each other in the end.
Unless one of you cheated, it’s likely you both contributed to the good and bad portions of the relationship, but Jones insists the breakup doesn’t have to be a bloodbath. “The refreshing thing about transitioning out of a partnership—a clean break and a fresh start—is all that can be water under the bridge,” she says. And while every relationship is different, and you’re going to handle a breakup differently depending on whether you’ve been dating for five weeks or five years, there are a few guidelines to always keep in mind.
1. “Do it in person,” Jones says. Obviously if you’re in a long distance relationship and can’t afford a plane ticket to break things off, a phone, Skype, or FaceTime call will have to suffice. Or, if you’ve only gone on a couple dates, then it’s not a ‘breakup,’ it’s just a parting of ways, she adds. Here’s a good rule of thumb: If you’ve been involved for more than a month, that warrants an in-person conversation.
2. Lead the breakup with your appreciation and respect for her in the relationship. “No matter the reason you’re calling things off, there are things you like and appreciate about her; otherwise you’d have never gotten involved!” Jones explains. In doing so, you’re being mature and thoughtful, and it lessens the unpleasantness of the breakup for everyone involved.
3. If relevant, sort out logistics with grace. Jones says, “If you’ve only been dating for a few weeks or months, it’s as simple as finding that sweater you left and giving back her earrings on the bedside table. If it’s been longer than that and you’ve crossed a threshold—like you’ve moved in together, or merged or mixed finances in some way—then give those logistics proper thought beforehand.” If you come up with a genuine game plan and show her you care, it will help you avoid a tremendous amount of breakup ugliness.
4. If the breakup is amicable and mutual, great. But if there’s a deluge of tears and anger, “see if you can understand things from her point of view while remaining strong in your own convictions and boundaries,” Jones suggests. “Her getting upset is no cause for you to change your mind, of course, but it is an opportunity for a little compassion.” Skip the sarcasm, blame, and malice; don’t raise your voice; and offer a shoulder to cry on—you know, be a standup gentleman.
5. This is key: “Resist the urge to sleep together shortly after your breakup just because it’s comfortable or convenient,” Jones says. In the long run, it can cause more harm than good; namely, it can be confusing for both of you. “Once you’ve decided to leave, let her go,” she adds.