Every relationship has its ups and downs, but sometimes, there can be more downs. When that happens, it's time to end it for good.
Men on Reddit share when they knew it was over in a relationship. Content has been edited for clarity.
Apparently There Were Double-Standards
“She would always constantly apologize for stuff, then go back and do that stuff again. I never questioned her about it or anything, but found it a bit odd she would apologize for something just to do it again. It never really got under my skin much for me to bring up.
Until I did something wrong and went to apologize for it. She gave me the third degree, read me the riot act. Wanted me to explain to her how I was specifically wrong and what I was apologizing for and why I was apologizing. I never treated her like that at all, I always accepted and never rubbed her nose in it at all.
I remember going to bed angry that night and wanted to break up, but decided to make a choice on the issue when I woke up to see if my thoughts changed. I woke up and hopped in the shower and stood in there for 35 minutes just brooding about it. I still felt as strongly about breaking up as I did the night before.
So I broke up with her after I got out of the shower. She…ironically enough, would go on to apologize for the way she spoke to me but at that point, it was too late.”
He Just Knew It Was Over
“My ex-girlfriend hit me in the face about five times one night in a rage, and after that, I went to therapy to see how I could stop this from happening. I loved her and didn’t want to just leave. Well, the therapist told me that I would either have to leave or go to Al-Anon to learn how to cope if I didn’t.
Things didn’t get better, but she didn’t hit me again.
Fast-forward six months. It’s a Sunday. She got up, was angry about an argument we’d had the night before about her drinking and how I was having second thoughts about marriage and told me not to speak to her. She got dressed and drove off for about five hours. Didn’t answer texts, calls, anything. So I went about my day, cleaning and such, and she came home, trashed as always (she was a functional heavy drinker), and started laying into me about this and that thing – I hardly remember now.
And it occurred to me: I wasn’t having an emotional response. I wasn’t angry. I wasn’t scared (like I sometimes was when she was like this). I felt nothing. I didn’t want to make up. It was over. I felt a weird peace. So I gathered the most important things I owned, right in front of her, and began loading my car. I never went back for the rest.”
This Woman Was Incredibly Toxic
“It was eight years into the marriage. We were driving home from yet another couples counseling session that she had used up most of the time with her complaints, and when the counselor invited me to talk about my concerns, she immediately pulled the conversation back to her. She did this each and every session.
I finally realized she had always been that way and was never going to change. That continuing to wait and try to work things out was in fact a futile effort, because ‘working things out’ always meant no peace until I admitted that I was wrong and she was right, no matter the issue. That she was exactly the kind of person (selfish, demanding, cruel, entitled) she wanted to be, and she saw no reason, and wouldn’t ever see a reason, to change.
I started looking for a divorce lawyer that day. She’s been my ex-wife for 10 years now; occasionally in the early years I would still catch some feelings but that eventually faded.
Overall it was the best decision I ever made for my own happiness. If I had a do-over, I would run … not walk … run the other way the day I met her. Ugh.”
He Doesn’t Need To Waste His Time On A Spoiled Brat
“I was planning my girlfriend’s birthday. Now, I’m at the poverty level, don’t have much income at all, etc. I was going to use a lot of my tax refund to take her about four hours away to the Reptarium in Utica, MI. We were going to have a good dinner, stay the night in a hotel, then spend the following day at The Reptarium.
I let her know my plans so she could request the time off. It wouldn’t have been a huge surprise anyway, as this was the second year in a row I was going to do this for her. Well, she decided that she wanted to leave a day earlier and stay an extra night at the hotel, which she would pay for. The problem was that she forgot to ask for that extra day off and got scheduled to work it.
Rather than leave after work and go through with our plans (she would have only missed a few hours of shopping time) or ask a coworker to cover for her (as they had done to her multiple times), she moped around, acted depressed, and even cried on and off for the entire freaking month leading up to her birthday. All because she wouldn’t get an extra day of exploring the city.
Finally, I’d had enough and told her we were just going to stay at a hotel nearby for a couple of nights and do a little shopping. I still made her pay for that second night and didn’t spend nearly as much on anything as I otherwise would have. I was pretty checked out at that point.
Bear in mind, something also weighing on me was how the previous year had gone. I had done all of that for her the previous year as well. When my birthday came around she had nothing planned, no present, nothing. She simply asked me, ‘Do you want to go to dinner or something?’
Her getting greedy about her own birthday after, I felt, put a damper on mine the previous year really, really hurt me. Pretty darn deeply.”
Caught In A Web Of Lies
“I left home at about 7:15 am to cycle to work. I was only four days in to a new job at the same company. As far as I was aware, she left for work shortly after. Her commute was longer and more complicated than mine, but it didn’t cost her anything. She worked as a childcare assistant and had free travel as a perk from a friend of hers.
At about 11 am, I switched my phone on and had loads of voicemail messages from her work and the police asking me if I knew where she was, as she hadn’t turned up for work and she wasn’t answering her phone and neither was I. I called them both back to explain that I didn’t know where she was and apologized for having my phone switched off. I called her numerous times over the next couple of hours as did the police and her work. It just rang and rang. No voicemail. She didn’t reply to text messages either. The police asked me to check if any of her friends knew where she was. I could only think of one person who she used to work with that she was still friends with, so I emailed her. She didn’t have many friends as she had trust issues.
The police then told me they were going to visit our house at 2 pm to check if anyone had broken in and asked if I could be there too, so I started cycling home. About 20 minutes into my ride home, I got a text from her asking why I kept calling and texting her. She didn’t understand the gravity of everything that had been going on. She then gave me the first excuse. She told me that a friend of hers (the one I emailed) was feeling suicidal and she rushed to be with her and comfort her. I then rode back to the office after calling the police back. She called them too to explain. My new boss was very understanding and could see how stressed I was. Shortly after I got back to the office, her friend that I emailed responded that she had in fact not seen her and wanted to know if everything was okay. I then called my girlfriend back to ask what actually happened to be met with accusations of spying, and she then told me it was in fact a different friend (the one who worked with her) who was depressed and suicidal and asked her not to tell anyone.
Fine. She then told me that she told her work that she was sick and her phone was playing up, but she told the police that she had a domestic issue and couldn’t get to her phone. This was probably the worst excuse to give to the police. I got home that night at about 7:30 pm and we had a long chat about the day. At about 10 pm the police knocked on our door. Initially, she told me not to answer the door (she was paranoid about getting burgled) so I hesitated not realizing it was the police. So when I did answer they were suspicious that something else had happened. They asked to speak with her, which they did upstairs. They came down a short while later and left. She then told me the police were okay and she told them she didn’t want to press charges. Press charges for what? I sat downstairs for a little while and she went back upstairs to bed. I then went up and told her that I wanted her out of the house as soon as possible. It was over. We’d been together for five years and married for year.
I couldn’t take any more of her lies. This wasn’t the first time I’d caught her lying. She was a compulsive liar. She’d lie about unimportant things that weren’t worth lying about, but this was the straw that broke the camel’s back. I slept in the spare room, which she should have been sleeping in really. She moved out two months later on a weekend that I was away. When I got back the house felt very different. It was as if an exorcism had taken place. My life started to improve the very next day. The result is that I was able to start really saving money. I moved to Richmond a year later, met my partner, got a career, had a son, and now a house. If I’d stayed with her things would never have improved as I was always broke and sometimes doing two jobs just to pay the bills, and I would have been constantly hoping things would get better.”
She Didn’t Want To Go Alone
“I brought up an issue that was a pattern for so long; we’d had a fight the week or so prior and it left me with some resentment, but our relationship was more important than the problem so I was working through it. Then it repeated itself and I could just tell that she didn’t respect me at all.
I wanted to stay home and talk it through, but she wanted to go out. I told her she could go but I just can’t go out, I was pretty hurt from the night before. She sounded so annoyed and just asked me to start talking.
She cut me off while I was talking about my emotions, and started telling me I was being stubborn, bringing up old issues (recurring) and that I was the only one with a problem as she has none and I’m just deflecting.
I tried to navigate it back towards how she was treating me was making me feel undervalued and disrespected. Her response was that maybe we should just break up then. I didn’t know what to say, it was clear she didn’t respect me at all.
Kicker: she came into the room shortly and still wanted me to go out to eat with her and her friends. She didn’t want to have to go alone and explain things and couldn’t understand why I wouldn’t want to go after just being broken up with.
The next morning she was cuddling up next to me, wanting to act like it didn’t happen and wanted to plan a date for later. Kept kissing me. I was so confused but it was obvious that she just wanted control. When I brought it up, she said I was just making her frustrated the night before and that’s why she said it.”
Something Did Not Add Up here
“We had been together for two years, and were engaged to be married. She moved in with me, and a few months later, started treating me like her meal ticket. She stopped contributing towards grocery and utility bills, started spending hundreds of dollars a weekend on dinner and drinks with her friends, and would get angry when I wanted to go out with my friends. She expected me to stay home and watch TV while she went out so ‘we can save money for a rainy day.’ Her mother treats her father the exact same way, so I wouldn’t be shocked if she thought this was normal couples’ behavior.
The exact moment I knew it was over was when she told me I had to quit a fantasy football league I had been in for eight years to save the $100 entry fee, and in the same breath told me she was going to NYC for a girls weekend and would be short on her share of the bills again. That’s when I realized she was using me. We broke up that night. She tried to get me to leave the house even though I fully owned it in my name. Didn’t work, I held my ground.
I went to work the next day and all traces of her were gone by the time I got home. Unfortunately, that’s not all that was gone. She also took my dining room chairs (which she helped pick out but I paid for), cast iron pan, and $2,100 in cash I kept in case of a crazy emergency. I contacted the cops about the cash, but there was no proof she took it.
That was seven years ago. I now live 900 miles away and I’ve been happily married for the last 14 months. I needed that horrible relationship and breakup to learn about real love.
Looking back, there were a million red flags that I ignored before it ever got to that point. She was a generally toxic person who would manipulate anyone she encountered into giving her what she wanted without her putting in her equal weight.”
A Painful Wake-Up Call
“I was dating a woman who had a young son (around three-years-old I believe). We’d been dating a while and had known each other for a long time so eventually, we got on to the discussion about kids. I wanted more and she didn’t. We broke up as soon as the conversation ended, we did it amicably rather than leading to one of us resenting the other down the line.
The real kick in the nuts happened a few weeks later; she didn’t want to have another kid but was also totally against abortion, so one hammered hook-up later, and she was pregnant. I also later found out that the reason she was against another kid was because her son got jealous when others were getting attention instead of him.
I did ask about the kid, of course, it definitely wasn’t mine, and, much to my surprise, I grew out of ever wanting kids a few years later. Possibly because of the attachment I’d grown towards her son as a paternal figure and the pain of having to walk away. Such is life.”
But He Wasn’t Even Cheating?
“When she would force herself over to my apartment and make a scene until I let her in. This conveniently on the days that I would have plans. So she would know when I would leave and return. She was beyond convinced that I was seeing someone else.
It all started the day I accidentally knocked my phone into the toilet. So with that out of commission, I had to go buy a new one. When I got back home and activated my phone, I got hit with a barrage of texts. Easily over 100 within an hour. I wasn’t responding and my phone was off so she started with the, ‘I hope she’s worth it,’ pure vile texts that threatened and insulted me.
I should’ve called it quits then but she made me very scared. She threatened me with calling the cops and saying I abused her if we didn’t hang out when she wanted. She said she was pregnant MANY times. Even said she got assaulted by a friend just to see how I would react.
Eventually, I got the courage and plan to get out. I convinced her I was talking with a lawyer and discussed our situation with the police. I had a ton of saved texts that displayed her mental instability. At that time, my apartment lease was up and I found a house a few cities away. I quickly packed up my things, moved out a month early, and blocked her completely.
It’s been roughly four years since that all ended and I’m still terrified to even think about pursuing a relationship with someone.”
He Spent Eight Years On Her
“We were 17 and had been dating about a year and a half. Thought I loved her, thought I’d end up married to her. Things were ‘good’ on the surface, but the absolute stress and anxiety she left me with during and after it was over stayed with me forever. So throughout the relationship, we were dumb kids and messing around a lot, sleeping together with no protection and stuff. To be as expected. No shock there. She always talked about having a kid and wanting out of her home (her dad and mom was her adoptive parents, and they were super religious and strict), and one day she was like ‘Hey, I think I’m pregnant.
So I was freaking out, thinking, Oh my god, my family is going to kill me and I’m barely 17 yet and no job!
So this crazy girl had me convinced she was pregnant and started pretending her belly was growing and talking about missing her periods and stuff.
‘Take a test!’ I said.
‘No I know I am, I don’t need that,’ she snapped.
Then she called me crying one night, screaming, ‘I think I lost the baby, had to flush it. It was just a pile of goo’ (she was actually on her period, she never stopped them), and I was messed up over it. I didn’t know what to think or believe. I was dumb. I didn’t know how that stuff worked. Then fast-forward a couple of months, and she pulled it again.
She told me over the phone, ‘Yeah, we’re pregnant this time for sure.’
I was so confused but we did mess around a lot, so it made sense to me. She made me go buy prenatal vitamins, fish oil, and a lot of other baby supplies. She even had me buying little outfits to hide under my bed for ‘when it finally gets here.’ This time, I had her take a test. It came back false, but my parents found the test. I told her to wrap it, and toss it in the trash can when she went to the bathroom as I went to get our shoes to leave and take her home. She didn’t, she left it lying on my bed. I should’ve known better and I didn’t. My folks found it, flipped the heck out. Settled that with them.
Things didn’t change much with her, she was getting irate with me. Something she never really did to me. She slapped the heck out of me in front of her girlfriend and one of my friends one night while we were all out together. She did it a couple more times around her friend too. My folks caught her in lies several times, stuff that didn’t line up. They thought she was harboring some issues concerning her home life and being adopted. Her parents weren’t evil or some crazy people, but just odd and strict. She just wanted to be married and out of that home. Wanted us married at 18 even though we had no job, no money, and nowhere to stay.
I guess the straw that broke the camel’s back was the day she started ignoring my texts and calls. I believe it was an argument about the guy she dated before me and he was contacting her on Facebook, wanting to be friends again, and just hang. I wasn’t really comfortable with her doing this. S after I dropped her off at her home, she had turned her phone off. No texts or calls, obviously so I was freaked out. Called her home just to ask her mom ‘Hey, is she alright?’ Just making sure ya know?
Told her mom to tell her I was asking about her. Nothing crazy. I was just hurt. Then I did something I shouldn’t have done and logged into her Facebook. I knew the password. I saw her messages and they were correspondences with the guy she split with for me. It was a bunch of smiley kissy-looking face emoji nonsense like, ‘We should be friends again, let’s hang!’ and all joyous and happy. The stuff I definitely hadn’t been experiencing for sure. And I just knew it was over.
But it should have been done so much earlier, but I thought I loved her so much to endure it apparently. We were getting our senior pics for high school taken together the next day. Before I left the house to do, so I text her, ‘Hey maybe we should see other people,’ and she was so happy and delighted I had suggested it.
She said, ‘I was thinking the same thing!’ then she started being really nice to me. There we were, a broken-up couple. We still took pictures together, and sis all the cuddly nonsense you see in typical couple pics. My God, I had never felt so low. I was ashamed to talk or tell anyone so I just went with the flow. Then I got the news on the ride home my grandpa had passed away. What a darn day.
After the pictures, she went right to that guy and he banged her brains out and dumped her a week later. He was much smarter than me, apparently. It’s been about eight years now and a couple of years ago, she reached out to me (through a prank call). She wanted to talk to apologize and make sure that ‘I didn’t hate her.’ I talked briefly when I wanted to give her relief and satisfaction. But I short-answered everything, told her to have a great life and ‘bye’ in the end. Of course, I had to hear about her current life for a bit. She ended up married to some big ugly idiot whom she had kids by and then she was going through the divorce. Last I heard it’s like four kids she has now? One of them was in the hospital for his left ball exploding or something just as wild. She told me she was happy to be getting a divorce and that she was down for a quick hook-up any time.
That’s when I told her, ‘well have a great life and goodbye, hope your kid’s nut is better.’
And that was that.”