You are done with your relationship, but the holidays are just around the corner.
Deciding whether or not to break up during the holidays is a difficult call to make. Here are some factors to consider when you're deciding what to do.
Sometimes it’s best to break up during the holidays and get it over with, but think about these factors before you dump your other half ahead of the new year.
So, your relationship seems like it’s about to end, but the holidays are coming up. You know what that means – you need to decide if you’ll end the relationship before the holiday season is over, or tough it out until the new year and then break up. This might seem like a lose-lose situation, since you will either hurt someone right before the holidays, or seem like you stuck it out just to have a plus one at your holiday parties. Here are some things to consider when you’re contemplating whether or not to end your relationship before the holidays are through.
How Ready are You to Break Up?
Are you really at the breaking point of your relationship, or if your partner makes some changes would you be willing to stay? If you are truly emotionally checked out of the relationship, then sticking it out through the holiday season will only put a damper on your holidays. On the other hand, if you think that the relationship might be salvaged, it could be worth it to wait until after the holidays to make your decision.
How is Your Holiday Stress?
The holidays can be a high anxiety time for people. Are you considering a break up because the idea of introducing your boyfriend to your parents is just too stressful, or are there real underlying issues? Sometimes you might mistake your overall anxiety around the end of the year for relationship problems. If you’ve had long standing relationship issues, breaking up before the holidays is a better idea than if it’s just holiday anxiety. Getting through a stressful holiday together might actually bring you closer together.
Are You Thinking About the Gifts?
Be honest – are you hesitating to break up before Christmas because you want to get some relationship parting gifts? Material goods are no reason to stay in a relationship through the holidays. If you are really committed to ending the relationship, have the compassion to break up before the holidays instead of milking your partner for monetary gifts when you know you’ll end things as soon as the new year hits.
Are There Kids Involved?
When you break up and there are kids involved, your children’s lives get tossed upside down. Staying miserable the rest of your life to prevent hurt to the kids isn’t healthy, but kids do deserve a happy holiday since they aren’t the ones responsible for your relationship status. Work with a couples therapist to confirm the status of the relationship develop the best course of action to protect the children as much as possible through the process. Children will recover, but in some cases it might be for the best to wait until the new year to separate your family.
Breaking up, as the song says, isn’t easy to do. Sometimes pulling the plug before the holidays is easiest, especially if the relationship is very new, and other times it can be in your best interest to see where you stand after the holiday season is behind you. Need help finding the right direction to take your relationship? Give me a call and see if I can help!
About Jennine Estes, MFT
I am a Marriage and Family Therapist in San Diego, CA. Certified in Emotionally Focused Therapy for Couples. Supervisor. I write relationship and self growth advice for my column Relationships in the Raw. Creator of #BeingLOVEDIs campaign. MFC#47653