He’s probably single, ladies … February 16, 1998…
Dear Breakup Girl,
I have been dating a girl for two and a half years now. We are unofficially engaged, I guess. I bought her a small diamond ring last year as a gift and she like to tell people it is an engagement ring. We have been living together for about five months now. I have come to the conclusion that I don’t want to marry, much less be with her anymore. But due to the lease, I am not sure on how to go about breaking up with her? Any suggestions?
You do realize that the lease is the least of your worries. Couples don’t consult each other about the best time for a breakup, much less their landlords. (Though Breakup Girl’s landlord does threaten to reclaim her apartment if he and his wife ever split up. But that’s another story for another day.)
Anyway, that ring’s the thing I’m worried about. Guys, even in this funky day and age, where women propose and men take their wives’ names, you just don’t just give your girlfriend a “small diamond ring” and think to yourself, “Well, she knows it’s not THAT kind of ring!” You just don’t. So if you want to break up with her, you need to break up with her the way anyone does. Gently, firmly, clearly. I don’t want you — either of you — writing back to me saying, “We are unofficially broken up, I guess.”