It used to be a little simpler to pick up on the signs that your relationship was coming apart at the seams. A gradual drift apart, longer working hours at the office, a moving van appearing unexpectedly at the marital home….
In this era, it is entirely likely that social media is likely to register your impending relationship implosion before you do, and everything you needed to know about your couple-doom will be delivered by this chirpy little fellow.
For the uninitiated, prone to some new-age rookie mistakes, here are the five twitter clues that might indicate you are headed for #splitsville.
Early warning visuals
Body language is a funny thing, right? A reliable but subtle indicator that all is not well – and Twitter conveniently dishes this right up to you in photographic form. Take these examples….
At the point you become more interested in holding your handbag with both hands rather than one of your boyfriend’s hands, disaster looms.
It is no defence to cite the fact that said handbag cost you more than a small luxury car.
Slightly further north on the scale of awkward body language is something like this.
Death-ray stare from Katie, something between fear and sheepish from Tom and even the kiddie knows she doesn’t want to be there.
The warning signs need not be pictorial. Some of us have very predictable behaviour around a breakup. Daily infusion of Lindt almond chocolate anyone?
Despite her youth, no one demonstrates more entrenched breakup response behaviour than Taylor Swift. I give you:
- ‘I knew you were trouble’
- ‘Better than revenge’, and
- if you were any doubt about potential reconciliation ‘We are NEVER. EVER. getting back together.
So if you were entangled with her and you saw this status
you know its over and another #splitsvillesong is about to hit itunes.
Next step along from the early warning body language signs are the deliberately posted images of defiant behaviour.
A clear sign that perhaps you are not the same people as you were when you first coupled up is when you wake to a tweet that shows your significant other has morphed from this
…potentially in a bid to deliberately move away from the image they knew you fell in love with. If you hadn’t detected the subtle hair and wardrobe change, they are now visually bludgeoning you with it with all the subtlety of a Donatella Versace spray tan.
Alternatively it may come in the form of a reminder that they have joined a new crowd that you are no part of.
It could even be the simple donning of an outfit/coat of armour that screams I NEVER WANT YOU TO TOUCH ME AGAIN.
Nothing says its over like not saying its over.
The twittersphere abounds with quotes from the vintage sayings of relationship gurus such as Elizabeth Taylor and Marilyn Monroe, to new age chaff that spews forth from the google relationship quote generator faster than you can brew a pot of tea.
A touch of obscurity there. With any luck you may be less in the dark if you are on the receiving end of something more robustly obvious like Seal simply tweeting #theend.
There are risks in dating someone who needed to go through tabloid humiliation to learn that flirty texts to someone other than your partner are messy when made public. That said, you might feel that the risk is mitigated when he went on to reform himself into a bit more of a monogamist and moved onto twitter knowing that everything said was public. Hello Shane Warne
If you then proceed to play out your entire lovefest on twitter, the way you will recognise its demise as this
Complete radio silence –thus proving that someone is obeying Mamma’s advice that if you have nothing nice to say……………
You are unfollowed
Unfollowing someone is the overt gesture that demonstrates that you don’t care to hear from them ever again, even digitally. (although there is nothing to stop you from routinely checking his twitter postings anonymously every hour thereafter. No evidence, and no stalker charges under ANYONE’S jurisdiction)
If your twitter following is limited to your immediate clan only, it may equate to a number where you will probably notice you’ve lost one and can reciprocate immediately in the hope it gives an air of mutuality to the decision.
If you are Liam Hemsworth, with a following of 443,403, you won’t personally notice a decrement of one, but the entire world media will let you know.
If all of this seems to be overwhelming and you feel you lack the savvy and commitment to apply these learnings to your twitter feed, close your account and go back to Facebook.
There’s no room for doubt the day you see this little icon pop up in your feed from your now-former flame.