Can a Break or Space make a relationship better or worse?

These two words have totally different meanings but when talking about relationships they mean exactly the same thing. Whether a person says that “We need a break” or “We need space” one is not better than the other, or worse. Taking breaks from a relationship has been going on from the beginning of time. People would take a break from a relationship if they were reconsidering the existence of the relationship and its entirety and need to step away to get a better understanding for where to go with the next step.

Some people would consider a break if they suddenly end up having to move and are reconsidering if it is worth making the relationship long distance or going separate ways. There are even breaks when something is revealed or exposed and the potential solution that may help to reconcile the situation would be to have time to think it over. A break is healthy when it comes to relationships because it prevents you from making hasty or permanent decisions, providing time to reconsider all possibilities. It gives you time to step away and review your situation from a new perspective.

The only way a break can become unhealthy is when it is abused.

The only way a break can become unhealthy is when it is abused. For instance, some people may take a break to benefit their own personal gains. In other words, it can be used as a “Hall Pass”. A Hall Pass is when one partner or significant other obliges to the other, giving them a temporary pass to do as they please within the relationship for a given amount of time. In other words, an excuse to cheat without it being held on record. Like in the movie starring Owen Wilson and Christina Applegate, where he was given a week’s pass to do as he pleased.

This pass has to be mutually agreed on by all persons involved within the relationship. A break is not an excuse to cheat, but that doesn’t mean that it cannot be used to. I recently watched an episode of a reality show called Love after Lockup where a gentleman desperately wanted to meet up with his girlfriend so he said that he would intentionally initiate an argument with his fiancee in order for her to get so angry with him to the point that she would stop talking with him. This gave him the opportunity to sneak off and be with this girlfriend that was staying a city away. Just the fact of him knowing that it would work shows his level of experience as a sleaze ball boyfriend (ladies please beware of men like this).

insecurities can develop when the mention of a break is brought up…

So we can see why insecurities can develop when the mention of a break is brought up as an option. Sometimes all you need is space away from the situation to reveal the root of your issues in order to resolve it. Often we end up with selfish and immature partners that will try to use a break as an excuse to do as they please, altering the entire purpose of a break. Unless it is agreed between all parties within the relationship to have a break without any limitations, and the sole purpose of the break is communicated properly there should not be an issue.

Here are some boundaries that should be expressed before hand to eliminate any sort of confusion:

  • If you chose to have an open relationship during the break I would not recommend inviting another person into a damaged relationship, it can interfere with your relationship. This includes friends too and their influence, which can be based more on their feelings rather than just yours (in other words what they feel is right).
  • This leads to another boundary, revealing your break to friends and family. Maybe you don’t want to bring it to everyone’s attention that you are having issues.
  • The timeframe of the break is also a topic of discussion. You will want to put a cap on the extent of time for the break, it can be days, weeks or months. Do not just leave it open or drag it on, it will not be fair to the partner that was not the initiator of the break. That is just a cowardly way to walk away or break up from a relationship. A break is different from a break up because it should be temporary until you decide on moving forward.

Also, depending on the individual and their level of maturity it should not have to be explained that there shouldn’t be any infidelities committed while on a break to help the relationship because it will only add more problems like jealousy, insecurity, and heartache. In other words breaks and space are good when it is done correctly, at the end you will know the next step whether to salvage or to leave it alone.