I’ve seen some brutal dumps in my day, but this one takes the cake. It was drawn out, relentless and dare I say it… brutal.
It left me crying in the shower at 7:30am on a Monday morning before work. Very inappropriate.
This form of breakup is so common that it has even been given a name that is all wrong. It’s called “delicate dumping,” and it involves subtly stepping back from a relationship without having the old breakup talk.
It’s not really ghosting, but tactics include reacting to a partner more slowly, maybe even days, before being completely ignored. Oof!
Jana was crying in the shower after being “delicately dumped” recently
It happened to me recently because of a guy I was seeing for a few weeks. As happens at the beginning of a relationship when you are all horny and happy, things went fast.
One date led to two, which led to three, all in one week. The texts went on day and night and we were kissing in bars like teenagers. It was delicious!
A few weeks later, it became clear that we were about to have the “what are we going to talk about.” I mentioned it briefly once or twice. What might have been subtle to me was probably very obvious to him, but the signs were good nonetheless. Then it happened… I was ‘delicately dumped’.
It started when I suggested we go to his beach house for the weekend. Nothing special, we had done it a few times before. He responded with:
I know you cringe at how thirsty I was right? Me, too!
Anyway, I never heard from him about the possibility of going to the beach house on Tuesday or Wednesday. This was odd behavior considering that before this text it was all “ready to go” in the relationship realm.
My ego had taken a slight hit, so I decided not to continue. Well, that was until I got restless a few days later and texted him another…
Note I sent that text on Sunday and he didn’t respond until Tuesday. cheeky. I mean, sure, we’re all busy, but three days is piss. The part I didn’t include in this text (for identification reasons) was where he tells me what he’s been up to and then doesn’t ask a follow-up question. Conversation over.
By now I feel quite confused! Just days earlier we had been hot and heavy. Lots of good morning texts, sporadic seaside trips, giving each other crazy emoji love heart eyes, and suddenly I’m feeling dizzy!
Ego again badly bruised I give it no contact again for a few days. My brain is in a constant state of ‘WTF?!’ and I feel pretty grim about the whole thing.
Then during a late Instagram scroll I came across one of those inspirational tiles that self-help gurus post. It instructed me to make a smart decision regarding my current conundrum. The meme said:
“We only have one life. Keep it simple:
Missing someone – call
Do you want to meet – invite
Have questions – ask’
So that’s what I did. I put my ego aside, I stopped playing games and I just asked the damn question.
Unfortunately, too much success because I got my answer… and it hurt terribly. So despite knowing deep down that such a text was coming, I found myself in a bit of shock and sobbing in the shower.
I realized that if I hadn’t just asked him outright what was going on, the “delicate dumping” would have been playing for god knows how long.
So now that a few weeks have passed, I’m actually really proud of myself for putting on my big girl pants and just popping the question.
It made me think he was a bit cowardly. What was used as an avoidance method was really just brutal and unintentionally cruel.
But I can’t throw away a criticism and take one myself, because in the spirit of complete honesty, I did it myself. I have lost interest in someone and am slowly trying to phase them out.
Jana Hocking says it’s time to ditch ‘delicate dumping’ and embrace mature chats, even if they’re awkward
It wasn’t until I discovered how awful it is to be on the other side that I vowed never to do it again.
We need to start treating each other like the living, breathing human beings we are and, like a Band-Aid, rip the damn thing off. Have that difficult conversation at the beginning of a breakup and you’ll avoid dragging out a terrible situation longer than necessary.
So I say BOO to delicate dumping and HURRY to having adult chats. Sure, they suck, but they suck a lot less than being guided.