couple holding hands while facing opposite directions
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If your last relationship ended on less-than-amicable terms, welcome to the all-inclusive club otherwise known as Where Relationships Go to Die Without Dignity. Honestly, there’s no way of getting around it: Going through a bad breakup is one of the most unsettling life experiences ever. While we all aspire to be as fortunate as Chris Evans — he’s never had a bad breakup — the sobering reality is that most of us haven’t been blessed with such a stellar end-of-relationship track record.

Even if you don’t come right out and announce your crappy split to the world, there are just some clear-cut indicators that scream to the world, “Hey, everyone, I too have engaged in one or more of the classic break-up don’ts, and because of that extremely bad decision, life really sucks right now.”

Not to rub it in, but there are obvious benefits to breaking up on good terms. Still, try to not beat yourself up if your split was a mini World War III. We don’t always have control over the way relationships end, but perhaps looking at the ways you ended things with your ex will help you to avoid contributing to a bad breakup in the future.

1You didn’t discuss why the relationship ended.

Oof. This is actually the worst. Knowing precisely what caused you and your partner to split may not ease the pangs of heartbreak, but not having that dreaded break-up conversation about why the relationship has to end makes accepting it and moving on with your life that much more difficult. Being left in the dark about why you broke up also contributes to feelings of powerlessness.

2You don’t wish your ex well. At all.

In fact, you seethe, snarl, and/or sob at the mere mention of your ex’s name. This doesn’t necessarily mean they did anything wrong by ending the relationship, but breakups tend to bring out some rather irrational feelings, which is totally normal. Your savage reaction to hearing your former S.O.’s name gives others a glimpse into how things might’ve gone down at the end.

3You actively avoid places your ex might be.

Suddenly that coffee shop you hit up for the daily latte is officially off limits to you because your ex’s cousin’s sister-in-law’s best friend works there, which means you will most certainly have a run-in with that dreaded individual from your immediate romantic past.

4You can’t recall one single positive detail about your relationship.

Who was this person, and exactly why did you fall for them in the first damn place? We have no idea because, at the moment, you can’t even come up with ONE reason why you consciously coupled with your ex.

5You lost your cool during the actual breakup.

You may or may not have responded to this breakup by throwing a huge fit, destroying your ex’s property, deleting your former bae off all social media platforms (and then adding and deleting them again), all before ranting on said social media account about how shitty breakups are. Your behavior may embarrass you now (or maybe it doesn’t), and while we certainly don’t condone what you did to your ex’s favorite book (ugh, that was just brutal), we understand that these mixed-up emotions that surface after a relationship ends are totally typical.

6You have NOTHING to say about the breakup.

Not that anyone wants to sit around all day discussing their exes (if you do, great for you), but if you can’t even broach the topic of the complete shitshow that was your disastrous breakup, we’re left to assume that things ended on such an incredibly bad note that it’s almost better to pretend it never happened in the first place.