Call it the moment you handed your relationship a “do not resuscitate” order.
The decision is spurred by a variety of factors, ranging from fundamental life differences to conflicting opinions about the “Twilight” series.
“This will never work.”
Your only consolation: One day, it might make a really good story.
That’s part of the appeal of “What Was I Thinking?” — a collection of 58 bad boyfriend stories edited by Barbara Davilman and Liz Dubelman.
Each story focuses on the moment the writer realized her significant other would get the “ex” label.
Some of the accounts draw on serious forces like commitment issues and infidelity.
But just as many are rooted in the seemingly insignificant gestures that remind us of incompatibility.
Take “Video Killed the Love Story,” Aimee Cirucci’s essay about a video gamer boyfriend who got her a TV for Christmas, even though she didn’t have cable.
When he got her an assortment of video games for her birthday, she knew she’d reached the final straw.
“I didn’t need high definition to see that we were both in love with the same person, and it wasn’t me,” Cirucci notes.
Then, there’s writer Judith Dewey, who was only able to see her relationship’s flaws after her boyfriend groomed his unibrow.
In “The Unibrow Breakup,” she writes, “… Paul found his happiness in an index-fingerwidth of wax and, forgive the pun, gave me a smooth exit plan to New York and my future.”
Does the book boast deep relationship lessons? Maybe not.
But at the very least, readers will take away an assurance that bad judgment often makes for the best writing inspiration.
Fans of “What Was I Thinking?” might also like these rejection-inspired collections:
“Things I’ve Learned From Women Who’ve Dumped Me” (edited by Ben Karlin)
The essays, penned by recognizable names like Stephen Colbert and Nick Hornby, highlight life lessons that often accompany romantic rejection.
“Six-Word Memoirs on Love & Heartbreak: by Writers Famous and Obscure” (edited by SMITH Magazine)
Sometimes, love’s complex universe can actually be summarized very succinctly.
Not impressed? Try explaining your romantic history in six words.
“Rejected: Tales of the Failed, Dumped and Canceled” (edited by Jon Friedman)
Talk about turning lemons into lemonade. You’ll laugh as writers and comedians detail their brushes with the world of “thanks, but no thanks.”