Five Well-Rehearsed Relationship Exit Lines and What They Really Mean
By Jane Dee
We've all heard them before. Those stock phrases men and women give out when they want to make a hasty exist from a relationship. And while those lines may contain an element of truth, there's a lot more behind them than is actually spoken. The following are five popular phrases with which to end a relationship with an interpretation of what they really mean. And while we all know that women are just as likely as men to say these words, they always seem to sound better coming from a man's lips; hence this article assumes that the dumper is male and the dumpee female.
BREAKUP LINE 1:
It's Not You, It's Me
This is quite a clever "get-out-relationship" card to play, because the guy who utters these words appears to be assuming full responsibility for the failure of the relationship. That's how it appears anyway. The truth is a little different. Don't imagine that he's telling his friends that it's not you, it's him. They're probably getting quite a different version: the honest one. The real problem with this line is that it's curtailed too soon. In its entirety it should, of course, say "It's not you, it's me; I'm the one who doesn't want to continue this relationship." But because the end of this statement isn't spoken, the woman is led to believe that her soon-to-be ex possesses some psychological flaw making him oblivious to her enigmatic charm and personality and supermodel looks. That's not it. He just doesn't fancy her any more, as in "It's not you, it's me; I just don't fancy you any more."
BREAKUP LINE 2:
I Need a Little More Time
Again, there's nothing wrong with this statement, just a few words missing. Most times those words are, "(I need a little more time)… to sleep with other people." But of course, no sensible guy is going to want to burn his bridges and risk his chances of stepping back into the life of the woman he's recently left, so he omits this last little bit of information; after all, he's not entirely sure that he is going to be sleeping with other women anyway (he might be hoping he will be, but that's not quite the same thing -- not in his eyes anyway!). Beware any guy who says these words to you and then comes knocking on your door two months later for "another chance." That's another chance to be able to say these words to you again sometime in the not too distant future.
BREAKUP LINE 3:
I'm Not Ready
It's quite interesting to note the number of men who say this line to one woman and then are found, six months later, married to another and soon to be embracing fatherhood. When a guy says these words, what he means is that he's not ready to commit to a life with you. He might be more than ready to commit to a life with another woman, just not you. Don't wait until this guy is read to commit to you, because you might be waiting a long, long time.
BREAKUP LINE 4:
I Don't Know What I Want
This line is usually said by those men who aren't necessarily unhappy enough in a relationship to leave it but who don't want to take it any further. This is their sort of red light. It says, in as nice a way as it possibly can, "Don't plan any events for the two of us too far off in the future; I just might've worked out what I do want before then and be gone." And remember that while a guy might not know what he wants, he might have a better idea of what he doesn't want…
BREAKUP LINE 5:
I'll Always Love You
Now you might think that there's little wrong with this line, and in itself there isn't. However, when it's said instead of the words "I love you," it spells danger. It speaks of the future, and unfortunately, it's one that won't be featuring the woman to whom these words are spoken. The guy who says this line doesn't see you in his future; he's letting you know that you while you mean a great deal to him you don't mean enough to make it to the next round. This line is heartbreaking because even as a parting line it's just so positive; it speaks of no flaws or deficiencies in the relationship. And the worst thing about this line is that the poor woman who's on the receiving end of this line just ends up falling that little bit further in love with the guy who's telling her that her time's up -- or very soon will be.
Yes, love truly does hurt. And words do, too, sometimes. But whatever you feel when you're on the receiving end of one of these lines, remember that it's not you -- it really is him!
Advice on Breakups