Days Couples Are Most Likely to Break Up
If you've ever broken up, what time of year did it happen?
Introduction: Goodbye to Sweet Romance
For those of you wondering if you and your honey are headed toward impending doom (or if you’re the type that stalks a couple online and tries to predict when they’re going to break up) then you’re at the right place! After analyzing data and comparing relationships, I can tell you which days are more likely to end with broken hearts and sitting alone on a couch with a tub of ice cream.
The First 3 Months of Your New Adventure
You are most likely to have a breakup in the first three months of your relationship.
If you make it past this, you have accomplished some sort of milestone, congrats! Over half of the relationships in this period break up. Why? The first three months are for testing the waters. Everything is new, and things haven’t really reached a stasis. If things aren’t fun then you can expect that you and your partner will be going separate ways. The first three months should be full of fireworks, dates, excitement, curiosity, and forward momentum. If you’re lacking those ingredients, then what’s the point?
First 6 Months — We Survived!
If you’re lucky to make it past three months, the next goal is six months. A lot of relationships do not pan out this long. If you make it this long — you’ll probably be dating for a couple of years, and if you’re not engaged by a certain point… then expect the battle-ax to fall.
If these first few months have not been shiny and happy and adorable, your odds are against you. Put in as much shoe polish as you can — and continue putting in effort for the remainder of your relationship. Don't drop the ball!
People have a way better idea of who you are at six months than they did at three months, so if you’re not keeping the momentum and you’re faking your way through things, expect that your partner will be ready to say adieu. Apathetic, not-going-anywhere relationships are unnecessary.
The magic definitely shouldn’t stop at six months. Things should still be exciting and new. Things shouldn’t go stale that quick.
January — The Tax Collector
After all the warmth of spending the holidays together, sometimes the breakup-ax is ready to split your relationship in half.
Starting around Halloween, and progressively more so around Thanksgiving and Christmas, people put off breaking up so as not to be the bad guy. (No one wants the reputation that they’ll break someone’s heart around the holidays.)
Lots of people don’t want to be alone during the holiday/party season. They’re willing to keep someone (who lacks carbonation) for all the festive events and to stay warm. Sometimes people would rather cherish the happy memories of the season, and let January be the month where reality sinks in. When the ornaments and string lights come down, does the glow of the relationship also disappear?
If you break up in January, it is likely that your partner was thinking about it months prior. The month with the most breakups is January — you can blame it on the Hobgoblin King’s rule over winter.
When the New Year’s resolutions start, sometimes people crave a clean slate. They let go of what’s not working. And they don’t want to invest in Valentine’s Day plans, so they pull the cord.
Right before spring break and into April, one of the most prominent times that couples split is during the early parts of spring. It may be a taste of spring cleaning getting into your relationship, or it may just be that with the seasonal change, you guys are going on separate paths. Unlike fall, which is the steadiest season for a relationship, spring comes with the changing of classes, graduations, vacations, the start of the wedding season, job changes, and looking for perhaps a new lease on where to live.
Spring by its nature is a catalyst for change. After winter, and coming out of hibernation, you might feel disconnected from the person who was cuddling with you by the fireplace. You might be tired of their smell and lack of hygiene practices. You don’t want to be a couch potato forever.
If things have been kind of bland in the winter, don’t be surprised by the distancing of your boo — and then them jumping into a wild spring break plan whether in New Orleans, Panama City, or the Bahamas.
It’s easier to break in spring when people are more in the swing of their goals — like toning up their body or doing yard work. If you’ve honestly had a boring relationship — this is probably a good time to say goodbye.
And sometimes people break up because they want to be free for their spring break plans. (Do you really want to be with someone like that anyway?)
Yes, Valentine’s Day
Valentine’s Day is either an amazing celebration of love or the Grim Reaper’s holiday for dead relationships.
Those who pass the test may find their relationship growing with newfound intimacy. Those who didn’t do so hot on Valentine’s Day… well you may be on a roller coaster ride that ends in spring — with spring cleaning, of course.
A lot of people don’t care for the heart-centric holiday, but sometimes it gives awareness to one’s relationship — the lack of commitment, how boring it’s gotten, the lack of romance, the lack of affection, the lack of time spent together, the lack of money… Valentine’s Day can be hectic on top of all that.
Getting the right events in order is somewhat like winning the lottery. In most cases, it probably doesn’t matter if your Valentine’s Day was sucky and uneventful — but in some cases — it’s the cherry on top and enough of a disaster to result in a resignation notice.
Another Reason to Hate Mondays
Has anyone ever said something like this to you:
“It was a great weekend, and now let’s be honest, let’s not spend another weekend together.”
Mondays are often loathed in the workforce because getting back into the swing of it when you found yourself over the weekend truly sucks. It’s also on record as the most likely day of the week that your relationship buddy is going to drop the bomb, use the workweek to distract themselves into a lala land of business-related tasks and coffee drinks.
The key here? Make your weekends work in your favor. You need to spend time in your off time with your significant other. If you’re not including them in your fun, then they’ll probably cut their losses. Usually, people don’t break up on the fly — that’s usually under circumstances that are dramatic, like cheating.
People build up to breaking up, similar to building up to being in a relationship. When someone is ready to take an ax to the relationship, they’ll think ahead about when is the appropriate time. If they're nice, they’ll think about when would be the appropriate time for you — but most likely, they’ll be concentrating on their schedule.
Monday is smart. Monday won’t ruin your weekend. Monday gives you enough time to plan for a new weekend without Mr. Handsome or Princess Beautiful.
Personal aside: I’ve had this one happen to me. It was like a switch had been turned on from Sunday to Monday. (Granted that was an awful situation, so it’s good to have it behind me.)
April Fools’ Day
Sometimes… people take it a little too far with their jokes. The thing about April Fools’ Day is that sometimes people, in a convoluted way, use a sarcastic joke to tell the truth. A little fun at someone’s own expense could unravel the mysteries of a relationship.
Also, April Fools is in spring which means the “diverging of paths effect” is looming in the air. The miserable holiday can help shake some leaves off the tree.
If you’re cruel — plan in advance how you want to come up with a creative breakup. If you’re really just wanting to have fun and see if your partner is game for your sense of humor — roll the dice and see what happens.
Don’t go too far with April Fools’ Day, like telling people someone is dead or in a horrific car accident.
Now that you’ve separated from the Idiot of Spring, you may be going through the summer months single — tanning in the sun, wandering downtown streets, and going on luxurious vacations. Summer is the strangest part of the year. It’s about 3 months off from the rest of the regular cycle. Usually, jobs are not as intense, school is out, and the heat equates to some serious brain fog.
You could play into the mysteries of summer and try dating someone. You know things are more serious if you buckle down for September. The June and July months usually signal a summer fling that won’t hold water when fall comes, especially if you’re going back to school, on a temporary vacation plan, etc.
Summer flings can, and often do, turn into serious relationships. But be warned, lots of them are more about the fleeting season. Summer is great for weddings and anniversaries — it doesn’t always translate well to starting relationships. Summer’s spell often ends in fall, but maybe if you impress Cupid enough he’ll send the two of you more arrows.
Only the cruelest people break up on Christmas day. People are more likely to break up at the start of the winter holiday, but the actual day itself — it’s just too mean. It’s actually the least likely day of the entire calendar year to break up with someone.
Now, anytime there’s a change in the year where people have vacations and can break away, that does signal a good time to break up. The middle of December is more likely for change than the end of it. People want to celebrate holidays with someone. If they don’t want to spend money on you for a gift — then they’ll break up sooner.
Graduation is an amazing time. You’ve achieved something, hurray! But unfortunately… it can also mean that someone is moving to another part of the world, and is moving on without you. Job offers can separate couples, more schooling can drain the life out of couples, and big adventures overseas can put love in limbo.
Graduation is a definite clear indicator that the seasons are about to change. If your relationship isn’t so sparkly, it’ll be time to say goodbye. If you two haven’t been communicating about a future plan, you should be worried. Those who want to stay together communicate about where they’re headed.
A lot of people don’t want a long distance relationship, so they won’t do something that could compromise their relationship or cause resentment. Sure, many will opt for a temporary LDR — sometimes it’s just the way the cards fall.
Marriage relationships have different cycles. From the empty nest stage, honeymooning, blah, blah, blah. Somewhere between 5 to 10 years in a marriage is when things get really rocky. A lot of crap will start to happen from financial issues, having kids, your parents dying. There will be thin times in a marriage, and those who are strong will survive and likely continue to survive.
Gray marriages (divorce after 20+ years) are unusual, even though they happen. Don’t put off your relationship if it’s going bad at the 7-year itch mark. Seek therapy, seek fun time, and maybe cut out some extracurricular things you do, like spin class and working on your car. You can revive a stalling marriage with the right spark plugs.
© 2015 Andrea Lawrence