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The do's and don't's of taking a break from your relationships

Posted October 24

Sometimes a little distance is what you need to be a stronger couple. (Deseret Photo)

What are you supposed to do when you and your partner are taking a break from the relationship? Some believe it’s good to see others, some think not dating anyone at all is important. While taking a break can refresh a relationship, it's confusing to know exactly what that means.

The point of a break is to give yourself time to think. You now have the chance to come to better terms with what you need and what you are expecting from your relationship.

Here is a list of some suggestions to follow until you get back together:

Do’s:

  1. Rediscover your feelings

    Sometimes we lose sight of why we fell for our partner in the first place. Take time alone to earnestly understand why you want to stay with your partner. Think about how things have changed since you started dating. Time will give you the answer, but only if you are seeking it out.

  2. Analyze

    Think of why you both agreed to a break in the first place. Did a mistake cause you to question your relationship? Or have you both lost sight of why you are with each other? Even if you are on the same page about taking a break, you need to analyze why it happened in the first place. This will help you figure out how to apologize and learn from your mistakes so you two can get back together without any hurt feelings.

  3. Make a list

    Make a list of what you love and don't love about your partner and your relationship with them. Thoughtfully consider both sides and ask close friends and family for their opinions. Now, make the same list about yourself. Are there qualities you need to work on to make this relationship work?

  4. Make a plan

    Taking a break is the perfect time to make a plan for your future. Look for traits you loved about other relationships and make a plan to have those qualities in this relationship. Do you need more emotionally reassurance to be happier? Do you want to spend more time with your partner? Discuss your plan with your partner to help this relationship succeed.

  5. Communicate

    Keeping in touch with your partner through all of this is important. Not speaking to each other at all defeats the purpose of figuring things out. Yes, you need your own time to think but reaching out with what is on your mind shows you are doing okay. The point of taking a break is to reach a conclusion of what would best for the both of you.

Dont’s

  1. Flirt

    It’s disrespectful to your partner and does not give you the chance you need to figure out how you feel. Don't be tricked into thinking that taking a break means you are free from commitment.

  2. Be bitter

    Focus on the positive. You might not need a break, but being upset means you are only focusing on your own unhappiness, not how you can help your partner. Being bitter will not help you get back together.

  3. Be clingy

    Usually we feel so desperate to hold on to what we had that we never want to let it go. Giving your relationship some time to mend itself can help fix the problems you were worried about. Give your partner some space to figure things out and take the chance to do the same for yourself.

  4. Look at their social media

    Let your partner tell you about their life instead of stalking them online. Obsessing over their likes and posts defeats the purpose of a break in the first place. You need to give one another the space and distance they deserve without any distractions to influence your decision.

  5. Date other people

    A break is not a chance for you to go out with other people and be happier with someone else. That is not fair to your partner. If you want to see other people, then properly break up and tell your partner so they can move on. Don't leave your relationship on the then you do it proper way and tell them, so that you can end things the right way and they can move on.

Talk with your partner about works best for you both. The important thing is that you figure things out individually before coming back together to make a plan for your relationship. Maybe that plan will mean breaking up and finding someone new or maybe you will come back together to be a stronger couple. Whatever your decision, you will know it was the best one to make because you took the time to think it through.

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