Nobody likes a break-up, be it from a good relationship, a bad one or even an average one. People don’t like being alone and therein lies a large part of the problem. Our opposition to being alone combined with societal demands quite often sees people rushing off into relationships, marriages and what have you not. I think that unless you’ve found the right one, and I’m not sure that really exists, then it’s best you avoid any marrying until you’re in your 30s. The times have also changed a lot and with it the way we do things. Our basic needs remain the same but the terrain has changed and by terrain I’m referring mainly to technology. Is there any relevancy in love songs that speak about waiting by the phone? Does the good old hand-written letter have any merit left? Not only has technology brought about changes in the way we communicate, it’s also changed the way we break-up.
In the Old Days…
In the old days, you screwed up, your partner told you it was finally over, to leave the keys and to get out. What usually followed was often an air of expectancy and disbelief. A break-up doesn’t’ just happen, you can usually smell it. Before the advent of the current climate of technology, the traditional telephone and the good old pen were the mediums of communication. Messages were passed on by parents and roommates and letters got written. You met significant others through friends, house parties and day-to-day routines – the gym, the shopping mall and even the library. I was about to say that you even met them in your local casino too but that’s nonsense and I would know; I’ve tried! I tell you, I’ve never seen a more dedicated and unflinching lot in my life! While I’m not discounting the consistency of the human species, and in saying that I mean that there are still a set of behaviours that can always be counted on, it’s the contemporary setting that forces some of those behaviours to come out in different ways.
Back in the day when you endured a break-up, and depending on the length of the relationship and your level of maturity, a concept that could apply to either parties or just one of them, certain things went down. If you or your partner had the emotional maturity of a 16 year old, then scissors would be taken to any photos and that would be that. The purge would continue with the doing away of love letters; why humiliate yourself each time you gave those a read? Clothes would be boxed or taken to a church bazaar and any ornaments would be returned to sender or shelved so far and so deep that they would never know the light of day again.
Present Day Break-Up
Right, so it’s the present day. I’ve always wanted to put that in print because it makes me think of movies, where they cut ahead from a dramatic sequence of events to the Present Day. You’ve endured yet another break-up but at this point you’re kind of getting used to it. You’re battle-weary, stronger, whatever Destiny’s Child was going on about all those years ago before Beyoncé sold out. But this doesn’t mean that it’s not going to add to the baggage (hopefully less this time) or not scar you emotionally. It’s going to be easier though, that’s all. You’re going to take this one more in your stride. However, there is still one thing you might want to do and that’s expunge your phone of all those memories, maybe even the juicy ones. Actually, keep the juicy ones for those lonely nights. Okay, okay, just keep one or two of the juicy ones.
Expunging the phone
So let’s review, if you’re a smartphone owner, which you probably are, then there are three main matters you’ll have to attend to and possibly a fourth one. In order of importance, those are WhatsApp, your gallery, Facebook and your email.
WhatsApp needs to be dealt with first. Yes, it is the evolution of your relationship, from the good to the bad and the eventual ugly, and I would advise you broom it all ASAP. Don’t keep those messages. The longer you keep them, the more you’ll read them and then you’ll spiral. Next thing you know you’re messaging that person or worse, calling them up. The same goes for the gallery. It’s bound to be filled with little cute vids you sent each other, pictures you sent one another and pictures taken together. Deleting these will be difficult but it might be something you have to do to spare yourself more pain. I would say Bluetooth it all on to your tablet. It’s not like you’ve got your tablet on you all the time. This way you can ween your way off those pics and when the time comes, delete them all.
Facebook is a tough one too. You can either tighten your privacy so much that the app will pop out a diamond or you can simply unfriend that person and believe me, it’s best you unfriend. Most of us know that Facebook is nothing but a carnival ride for your ego and the last thing a bruised ego needs is to either see how much better your ex is doing or how emotionally distraught that person is. The main message here is simple, you don’t want to see or know what’s going on in that person’s life. Lastly there’s your email and once again I’d say broom all those messages or archive them, but rather go with the former.
At the end of day…
I won’t lie to you, I don’t have the answers. I’m also just navigating my way through it all, but what I do have is mileage and I think that gives me some credentials. I’ve done a bunch of tours and I’ve lived to tell the tale each time. I’d like to think I’ve gotten better each time and so, what I’m saying, if I’m saying anything at all is, get out there and get some!