Out and About with Miss Delish: The Winter of Discontent

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If you are a little cold blooded, you may have found the recent drop in temperatures unbearable. This winter has ‘freezing’ written all over it. And, along with it, we’re experiencing a cold snap of another kind. Let me explain.

I was recently on the phone to a friend who was telling me the break up story of a mutual acquaintance. I, of course, asked all the sticky questions: “Who made the decision? Was there someone else? Do you think they will get back together?”  Anticipating the barrage of the sort of questions I normally throw at anyone who tells me this kind of news, my rather intuitive friend expressed exasperation in his answer: “No, no. She just snapped and wanted out. Nothing sinister!” He seemed quite comfortable with this statement, and he appeared to believe that such behaviour is normal. But I don’t get it!!!

I was quite happy to leave this incident alone, until it became glaringly obvious that this is a pattern in the 30 something age group. I have recently seen at least four couples break up after long periods of time together, with no obvious explanation. I decided to investigate the reasons behind it and why it is that this time of the year seems to be the time for people to cut loose.

Speaking with a few of the, now single, friends who have recently parted company with their partners, I got some answers. I could waffle on about individual circumstances, and list the particular questions I asked, but the focus of this is the why. There are three themes: Men, Women and Time. They differ between the men and the women. Let’s start with the men.

The men, surprisingly, whinge about all the things that were making them unhappy and unfulfilled for at least ten minutes before they tell you the answer to the question. Finally, it flies out of their mouths, as comfortable as any other daily phrase would roll off the tongue, usually words to the effect of “I just knew she wasn’t the girl I wanted to spend the rest of my life with”. Ahh. There it is. Thank goodness! All that fussing and whining and screwed up faced conversation to get to the truth and heart of it. And well said. When someone is that honest and blunt, one can’t argue and nor should they.

The women are far more direct, matter of fact, and say the answer before explaining how they got to this point. “Something happened when I turned thirty, and I just knew that I didn’t want this. I wanted something else. I changed.” Simple, unforgiving and nothing more to add. It is here I had to probe and ask for reasons. The general consensus is that most ‘don’t know’ what changed, they just did. And women are brave. If they are unfulfilled, bored, unhappy or even just not unbelievably happy, they leave. They leave with conviction too. There is no looking back, no squabbling over assets and cash- they just want out. Once a woman has decided she is over it, she is over it and the inevitable WILL HAPPEN.

Why Now?  Well, here is what I could gather after this little investigation. This age group of couples who are’ splitting or sitting’ as I like to call it, are educated ‘thirty somethings’, and St Kilda is flooded with them. It appears that security, long term planning and implementation of those plans must occur around the age of thirty two. There is something about being on the way to thirty five that induces a sense of urgency to be set up, settled, or removing any set backs. Interesting that the biological clock works in similar ways for both sexes.

Why Winter? Good question with a simple answer, really. Christmas time and the close of another year, with the prospect of a new year dawning, can have a profound impact. People start thinking about whether they want to repeat the years they have spent with this person. Once reflection time has brought the answer ‘no’ to such a question, the idea of getting out or starting afresh lays in wait during the duration of summer, and autumn brings panic when no change has occurred. Hence, it is winter that motivates people to leave during the grey period, and look ahead to a new beginning when the summer comes around again. It is almost spooky to watch the seasons bring seasons.

So dare I put my own opinion out there? Twist my arm!! If you are thinking it’s time to go, go. If you cannot bear the thought of another six months with a certain person, don’t bother bearing it. If you are worried about being alone, don’t – there will be many single people who left their baggage behind six months ago, as you will have done by the time summer swings upon us. Alternatively, if you are only too happy to stay with whoever it is that makes you feel alive and grateful, then rug up and rest up……you may find you need your strength to comfort the friends who have felt the wrath of the cold snap!

See You In The Village.

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