Talk To Us: Have you ever been manipulated into breaking up with someone?

Have you ever dated someone whose personality suddenly and inexplicably changes? Someone who transforms from laid-back and easy-going to difficult and argumentative, seemingly without reason? Or someone who goes from caring and available to cold and distanced in the blink of an eye?

If you have, there’s a good chance that you were the victim of what I call a sneak-a-break (in tribute to the “sneak-a-date,” which I’ve discussed previously).

The sneak-a-break is where the person you’re dating wants to break up, but instead of being assertive and doing so, manipulates you into breaking up with them by becoming difficult, cranky, whiny, needy, or whatever is needed to drive you away. To me, the sneak-a-break is the ultimate indulgence of the chronically passive-aggressive.

For an upcoming article, I’m going to talk about this nasty habit that both men and women engage in, so I am looking for any stories that you might be inclined to share. (Don’t worry, I promise to change all names.) 🙂

So… do you suspect that you might have been the victim of the sneak-a-break at some point? Why? How did you respond? Alternatively, have *you* ever committed a sneak-a-break? Why?

You can comment here, or email me personally if you’d prefer a little privacy.

Thanks in advance for any comments you’d like to make!


Addendum: The product of this discussion can be found here.

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  • My college bf of 4 years told me after I broke up with him that he did that…don’t know if he was just saying that to save his ego, but why not just break up with someone if you aren’t happy? Sounds like a cowardly way to go if you ask me. Nobody really wins. We had a dramatic relationship the whole time, so it’s hard to say when he decided we were over to begin with. But a lot of people are like that.

  • I think a couple of guys might have suspected me of committing a sneak-a-break. But I didn’t. It’s just that when your feelings change and you start to think maybe you don’t really want to be with someone, you act different. At times I have been ambivalent or uncertain about breaking up (the reason I hadn’t just initiated a break up), but because I am VERY bad at faking positive feelings, it becomes clear to the other person that I’m not that interested any more. So then, if they’re the type that doesn’t care to talk it out, they go for the breakup. And at that point, I’m usually fine with it, and relieved that I didn’t have to initiate it.

  • Is this another Meg inspired article?

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