By: Em Kwissa

Ah, post-Thanksgiving – the time when the honey-dipped optimism of summer makes way for the cool gray reality of autumn. The time that brings to an end the idealism of hometown hookups and vacation exploits, finding them far less attractive when faced with distance, obligations, and even just generalized staleness. A time of beginnings that bring endings. A time of turkey dumps!

So, right in time for the end of the summer fling or the three-year relationship that won’t survive the start of university, for all you evolved and civilized once-flame-now-burned people who are still friends on Facebook: A guide to the modern breakup, from the people watching it all unfold from the sidelines of your social media.

 1. Post constant status updates on Facebook and Twitter, preferably ones that can be accompanied by pictures of your face and/or body.

Obviously you’re handling this whole thing with maturity and grace. You are not emotional or really thinking about your ex at all, so the whole idea of taking some personal time to heal and move on is clearly for people who are Not You. Time to assure everyone that you’re doing well. What better way to do that than with pictures of your face and body? Look how cute and fun you are! You are clearly loving the single life! This barrage of staged photographs of you smiling in a bathing suit / in spandex / in a towel while you’re “At the beach!” / “At the gym!” / “Just relaxin’ today!” is neither transparent to your ex nor annoying as fuck to everyone else.

 2. Accidentally run into your ex.

Get dressed up and go out. Maybe go to places you used to go as a couple. Maybe go places you know your ex loves. Maybe go places you heard Julia say your ex would be. Better make sure you have a great pair of jeans on. Not that you have to prove to anyone that you are a total catch. You will just be chilling with your friends.

3. Catch up with old friends.

You know, the ones you never spoke to or saw for ages because you were too busy dating someone. Call them up! Let’s hang out! It’s not like you were at all crummy or neglectful! Take tons of selfies together! Look how many friends you have! And you know, you always wished you were closer with your ex’s friends... They seemed really cool. Well, breakups are a great time for self-improvement. Get out there and make friends, you! This won’t be weird at all.

4. Keep everyone updated on your every passing emotion throughout this process.

Sure, it’s a raw, emotional time, and your mind and heart are going to be changing every two to five minutes, but that’s why they made mobile apps. Why have an actual conversation with someone when you can just shout your feelings at everyone from your co-workers to your grandparents? It’s better this way. No one’s going to comment on a public Facebook post, “didn’t you say really awful things during the breakup?” or “do you think you’re maybe being a bit dishonest with yourself?” or “your poetry is really bad.”

5. Keep trying to “work things out” with your ex,

even though that is something people do to prevent a breakup, and you are, in fact, broken up. Give your ex that highly comprehensive list of character flaws you compiled. Dredge up all that old crap you never talked about when it was actually happening. Keep tabs on them through mutual friends and social media. If you’re going to stay friends, you’ll want all this out in the open. You’ll want to have it all worked out. And who wouldn’t want to be friends with you? You’re really nice until the chips are down and things get difficult, at which point you react the way any reasonable adult human would – by being mean to people you supposedly care about. Fair trade, right?

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