How to break up

More people break up in January than in any other month. Find out when you should move on and what to say when the time comes to end things

It shouldn’t come as a surprise that January is prime break up time. Is there scientific proof? Not really, but according to popular belief, more relationships end during the month of January than in any other. Whether you chalk it up to spankin’ new resolutions or pre-Valentine’s Day pressure, break ups are never easy. Read on for tips on how to make a clean getaway.

Time for a change
We all want to take advantage of the blank sheet of time extending before us: 2010. It could be the year we do anything: find true love, find a dream career, find jeans that fit in the waist and in the hips. The possibilities pile up and make that so-so relationship seem like baggage. Since the calendar stretches before us pristine and full of promise, it doesn’t seem so scary to start it alone. Resolution #1: Break up with X, start new life.

When it’s right, it’s right
Take the time to be sure you’re sure. The thrill of the new year can make situations seem desirable: going out with your single friends, having more time for yourself, doing what you want when you want. Consider how you really feel about the relationship. Is it you or Mr. X? There’s nothing to be done for poor X if your feelings have changed. There’s a reason “It’s not you, it’s me” is a cliché – it contains truth. If you’re over it and can’t see how any change would help, then you’re done. If the fault lies with him and you’ve never spoken up about it, then a discussion is the fair thing to do. You’ll both have all the information and can choose to change and move forward or to end things.

What to do about it
Yes, breaking up isn’t easy, but there are better ways to go about it. Do not break up over an electronic device – although the phone can be necessary in long distance situations. Invite Mr. X over without dropping hints like “We need to talk.” It will be easier if he doesn’t know what’s coming, your upper hand is in the element of surprise. This isn’t to be hurtful. You’ve made up your mind so there isn’t any mercy in letting him come up with an argument that will never be effective.

Explain that you care about him – a must unless you’re completely unfeeling – that it’s over and that you’re sorry it didn’t work out. Some people feel that there’s no need to apologize for your feelings, but it can be the classy thing to do to a heartbroken guy you once kissed with meaning. Listen to anything he has to say for a polite period of time and then make him go. This is by far the hardest part, but thank him for coming over and end it. Your mind’s made up, right?

If you’re the dumper
There’s no better time for a girls night out so get out there and enjoy your reclaimed singledom. This is what you wanted, so make it happen, girlfriend!

If you’re the dumpee
We know it’s tough, but check out these traditional break up survival strategies, take all the time you need and then hit the dance floor when you’re ready.