We don’t break up anymore. We don’t tie our endings up with pristine little bows. The long running joke of “Dear John” letters is slowly becoming just another thing our grandparents will have to explain. Just another thing we gawk at. Another thing we scratch our heads over, not understanding such formality.
Nowadays, we don’t end things neatly. We don’t bow out gracefully. It has become nearly impossible to say goodbye in one piece.
Instead, we leave traces of our former love scattered everywhere: online photo albums, apps, forlorn Tumblr posts. We’ve got entire galleries of what used to be.
Even when we delete, erase, do our best to make it appear that chapter is done, we won’t ever fully scrub ourselves clean. We can always go back. We can find ghosts as easily as scrolling back 57 weeks. We’ve got unintended monuments built to what didn’t last.
We don’t break up anymore. Not really.
We slowly disappear. We stop returning texts.
It’s too easy to be left wondering if a sequel waits in your future. It’s too easy to be left hoping the adios is just temporary. We can look back at all that was. We can remember with visual aides. We can make a lifetime of never letting go.
We don’t break up anymore. We eventually fade from each other’s lives. It’s a gradual process. Sometimes, it’s painstakingly long. We sit and wait and sit and wait. We hope the scar will be lighter today. But often, it isn’t. Often, it’s just as visible.
I don’t know if technology’s to blame or if we’ve just stopped wanting to be honest. Maybe it’s a combination of both. Maybe we’re so “connected” all the time that we’re actually forgetting how to talk. We’re forgetting how to say how we feel with someone standing in the same room.
We don’t break up anymore. Our ill-fated romances continue existing, whether or not we want them to. They stay floating. They stay haunting.