Letting go is the hardest part…

People have strange rules involving break-ups: You can’t break up with someone within 72 hours of having sex, 7 days before or after their birthday, during the month of any major holiday, by text message, and never in winter, spring, or summer. Given all these rules, you can technically only break up with someone on Thursdays in September. Stop making excuses.

Let’s be clear, break-ups are never easy but they are a necessary evil. If you’re not putting 110% into a relationship you are doing yourself and your partner a disservice. I have found that men employ five primary break-up techniques. I will discuss these below in the order of difficulty, from easiest to hardest, and hopefully provide some insight into why a man might have chosen a particular method in the past.

1. The Houdini: He disappears.

The easiest of the methods, all a man has to do is fall off the face of the Earth. He doesn’t have to explain himself. Even awkward talks aren’t necessary. Coming up with a good reason? Not required. This is reserved for women he does not care about jump-offs, side chicks, [garden tools]. It may also include women he is confident he can avoid running into for the rest of his life (or at least 6 months), such as out-of-towners, one-night stands, girls he met at a wedding, friends of friends of friends who don’t run in the same circles. You may disagree but he has decided you are not worth the hassle of the break-up discussion. This is the most low-class disrespectful move a man can pull, yet it happens every day.

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2. The Illusionist: He remains only in form.

Rather than formally break up, he slowly withdraws from the relationship mentally, physically, or emotionally. He wants out but he is not man enough to end it. Instead, he lets the relationship die a slow painful death. There will be no mercy kill. A coward might break up with you over text or via a surprise Facebook status update to ‘Single.’ He really wants you to break up with him. However, if you are equally weak-willed or too stubborn to accept it’s over, this pathetic excuse for a relationship might last forever.

3. The Tiger Woods: He cheats.

Cheating is easier than remaining faithful. The Tiger Woods doesn’t respect you enough or have the courage to break up. He is, by far, the worst. He endangers you emotionally, physically, and mentally because of his own selfish pursuits. In his mind: Me > You.

4. The Good Guy: You love him almost as much as you hate him.

You hate him because he uses you in the nicest way possible and you can’t do anything about it. You love him. He knows it. You know it. Most women prefer this break-up even though it is not the break-up they need. In fact, it is one of the worst. What women overlook is the fact that The Good Guy is inherently selfish. While he appears to have your best interest at heart, he actually puts himself first and always.