Taking a break: How is a relationship pause different from a breakup?

Just because you take a temporary break from your relationship, it doesn’t mean that you are no longer a couple. There may be times in your relationship when you and your partner question whether you want to stay together due to various reasons such as constant arguments or work pressure. This dissatisfaction may lead you to a difficult choice between taking a temporary break or ending things forever.

What is the difference between a pause and a parting

At first glance, a relationship pause and a breakup may seem similar, but they have significant differences in terms of their impact on your future.

The main difference between a relationship pause and a complete breakup is your intention. When you decide to end your relationship, you are certain that it’s over. Whether you part on good terms and remain friends or not, that chapter of your life is closed. Most couples choose to end their relationship when they realize that they have lost their feelings for each other and that being single is more attractive than being together.

Of course, the mutual decision to end your relationship does not guarantee that you won’t be drawn to each other again in the future, as seen in the example of Jennifer Lopez and Ben Affleck reuniting after 20 years. After some time has passed, you may realize that you still have feelings for each other, which does not negate the decision to end things and pursue your own lives.

On the other hand, taking a break in a relationship is different. When you agree to take a break, you still want to be together and love each other, but internal or external difficulties are interfering with your relationship. Perhaps one of you has to move to another city for work or you need to focus on caring for your parents. In other words, you need time to sort out your thoughts and redefine your partner’s role in your life.

Although taking a break does not guarantee that you won’t break up in the future, you are aware that it may do you both good. Nobody is leaving anyone; you just need time to figure out if it’s worth making the effort to be together for the long term and hopefully, happily.

How to start a pause in a relationship

If you decide to take a break in your relationship, it’s essential to have a serious talk with your partner. First, discuss the reasons and goals for your temporary separation and the steps you’re both ready to take to change the situation. Also, be sure to agree on the start and end time of the break. All decisions should be mutual for your relationship to have a chance to continue.

If you’re unsure about your partner, it’s important to ask uncomfortable questions. And don’t hesitate to find out how far your temporary freedom extends. Will you stay in touch? Spend weekends together? What will you tell your loved ones? Do you plan to date or sleep with other people? Remember that your partner has the right to express their true feelings, even if you don’t like what they say. You need this information. A relationship pause means that during the separation, you will consider all the issues in your relationship and find ways to address them for the sake of a joint future.

When you need a pause in a relationship

If you feel the need to take a break in a relationship, it should be for the purpose of understanding what is going wrong and what you truly want from each other. It is not about distancing yourself or avoiding responsibility. According to a psychologist, taking a break to buy time is not an effective solution, as it does not solve anything and may only freeze the relationship at a difficult stage.

Sarah Shapiro suggests that taking a pause is an opportunity for self-reflection and a chance to work on your desires. This can involve seeking professional help, attending courses to improve your communication skills, and thinking deeply about your relationship.

Although taking a break may be a necessary step, it can be emotionally challenging. You may experience feelings of sadness, loneliness, and uncertainty about the future. It is essential to stay positive, but also understand that a break can lead to the end of the relationship.

Ultimately, honesty is key. If you still love your partner and want to work through the issues, a break may be worth it. However, if you have fallen out of love and only seek a break to avoid loneliness, it is unlikely to end well.

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