The Relationship Is Over- When Do You Say Goodbye

A buddy of mine just finished getting divorced. Last Thursday they signed the final docs and now he is officially single again.

Over the course of an evening he talked about his marriage and what happened. He shared some of his hopes and dreams and explained how surprised he was that things didn’t work out between them.

He said that the split was bittersweet and that though he was happier not to be wed to her, a part of him was still sad. I told him that what he was saying made sense and reassured him that he had done the right thing.

I don’t know if it helped him but I hope that it did. One thing really stood out during our talk and that was the question of knowing when to walk away. How do you determine that you are not going through a phase. When do you decide that you cannot salvage things. When do you say goodbye and walk away.

It is a hard question to answer. I am not sure that I really know, but it is something that I am mulling over.

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  1. Jack February 18, 2008 at 9:38 pm


    Outright begging- Once you reach that point you are in big trouble.


    I am with you. I can’t imagine that it would be easy.

  2. Gila February 17, 2008 at 4:54 am

    I have never been married, and in fact, have never even been in a serious long-term relationship (pathetic, no?) All I can think is how painful it must be to separate from someone who was so completely a part of your life–no doubt that this makes the decision to separate even harder.

    My thoughts to your friend.

  3. The Misanthrope February 17, 2008 at 4:48 am

    You say good-bye when the behavior in question does not stop after talks, therapy, and out right begging.

  4. Jack February 16, 2008 at 4:53 am


    Sounds fair.


    Just a general question.

  5. cruisin-mom February 15, 2008 at 11:31 pm

    Jack, I do not profess to know what is right for someone else…when you say you are mulling it over, is this something you are contemplating for yourself, or just a question you have in general?

  6. FlutePrayer February 15, 2008 at 11:26 pm

    When to walk away: when you’re being abused; when you’ve both been to counseling and tried hard to work it out. When not to walk away: if you’ve been unwilling/ unable/ too lazy to maintain healthy communication; when the grass is looking greener somewhere else (it never really is); when you’re just not feelin’ it (get over yourself and work on honoring your committments).

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