“I need stability in my life” (So you are wrecking the one bit of stability you have?).
“You are really special to me”(So special, in fact, that you are doing this to me in public?).
“I think we should see other people” (I am…)
I think the worst part of breaking up is that it usually happens when you least expect it to. You meet for a drink, she is nice to you, normally complements on your hair or clothes and then BAMM moves in for the kill. There follows an awkward silence and then the inevitable moment when she cries. This is not for your benefit. It is a carefully stage-managed thing that women do to dispel any rumours that she is being a heartless cow. Then you sit, make small talk and you bumble on about nothing.
Some men choose to storm out in a theatrical manner. Some men chat up the barmaid or text their pretty female friends for hugs and sympathy (‘cos you know that’ll piss her off). Me? I choose the dignified option: introspection and Brown Ale. The worst possible time to be broken up with is just after a trip to the bar, because you have to sit and mull over all of the pain together until you have drunk up and can go your separate ways…
An Ipod is a useful weapon at this point. When she heads to the bathroom for tissues you can delve back into your favourite albums to offset the tears. Unless of course you were listening to The Smiths on your way to this rendezvous only to pick things up halfway through Morrissey crooning “I Know It’s Over”. You feel a salty taste in the back of your mouth and so hastily head to the bar.
You go through a myriad of emotions over the subsequent hours. Pain, hurt, anger, depression. You question how it has got to this stage? Is it something I said? Was it something I cooked? Is there someone else involved?
Until you finally reach acceptance, attempt to be positive and delve into the World of literature…
The concluding part of The Dolls House would be so much better if instead of falling to his knees and begging Nora to stay Torvald went, “actually…fuck her. Now I can watch Match of the Day in peace and put a dartboard in the spare room”. Ibsen was missing a trick there. The final act could end with him posting an advert on Gumtree,
“WANTED. Nubile flatmate. Preferably in blonde. No tarantella dancers please”.