I know it’s hard. You’re blindsided by your partner, who has decided that it’s best for you two to consciously uncouple. As you work your way through the five stages of grief while mourning your kaput relationship, you’re bound to indulge in some self destructive behavior. While that could manifest as listen to “Wrecking Ball” on repeat for days while drinking all of the red wine, your sadness may leak over into a more public forum.
It can be easy to assume that Twitter doesn’t matter. You just type in your 140 characters of whatever-the-hell you want, and send it off into the void. However, the internet is forever, and those tweets can follow you around for a long time. So, if you want to maintain the respect of your peers and not have to explain to future employers why exactly you spent weeks posting nothing but lyrics by Tegan and Sara and Papa Roach (hey, breakups are ugly), here are a few tips:
Don’t post lyrics to your favorite sad songs.
No one can deny the healing power of Bonnie Raitt’s “I Can’t Make You Love Me.” It can be a balm to a wounded soul, and you’ll feel like no one has ever experienced heartbreak like you and Bonnie. However, your kinship with Ms. Raitt is probably best expressed in a more private matter. You’re just going to bring your entire timeline down.
Don’t angrily tweet at celebrities.
Celebrities exist on Twitter and the rest of social media partially to share how awesome their lives are (or at least appear to be). So, when you see yet another post by Chrissy Teigen about how she eats so much but is still a supermodel and how in looooove she and John Legend are, you may feel the green eyed monster bubble up inside. Squash it. If you start tweeting hate at people that you do not know (or at anyone for that matter) and bear you no ill will, you’ve became a much worse version of yourself.
Don’t air your dirty laundry.
It can be hard to take the high road after a break up. You’ll probably want to slam your former SO in a very public and angry manner. However, lengthy Twitter rants only make you look petty. Yes, your ex was probably a total jag, but chances are people already know. If you move on with your hands clean, you will officially win the breakup.
Don’t lie about your social calendar.
Everyone embellishes their social lives on Twitter. Internet You is waaaay cooler than IRL You. However, if you’re constantly tweeting about “epic guy’s night!” or “getting crazy with mah girls!” when you’re really just sitting on the couch and eating your third round of pizza rolls, you are not going to come off well and will most likely get caught in a lie. It’s the tweet equivalent of “What happens in Vegas stays in Vegas.” We know what happens in Vegas. You got drunk, spent too much money in the casino, and passed out in the toilet. If you swap “in the casino” for “on Amazon” it’s what everyone knows you’re doing after a breakup.
Don’t heckle their friends.
Friend groups often get intertwined over the course of the relationship, so there’s a better than not chance that you have some links to your former partner’s bffs. But as soon as you start tweeting at their friends about “Who THE HELL is that dude in Cindy’s new photo?!”, you’re crossing over into the not-cool kinda danger zone and begging to be cut off from the well-spring of their friendship as well.
Don’t post private photos.
The quickest route to Scumbagville is to post… intimate… pictures of your ex online. Those nude selfies or d*ck picks were probably sent to you in confidence, so posting them online would be a real betrayal of trust. Also, it’s a sex crime. So, yeah. Don’t be that asshole.
Don’t post vague platitudes and then respond with “I don’t want to talk about it.”
If you want to talk about it, call your best friend. They’re supposed to love you unconditionally, so they can handle your sometimes ugly sadness. There are probably people in your life that will give you the attention that you crave during this rough time. Accept their help. If you genuinely don’t want to talk about it, lay off the tweets of “you don’t know what you’ve got ’til it’s gone” and “Send me some good vibes, fellow wayfarers.”
Don’t post crying selfies.
HAVE SOME SELF RESPECT. For the love of God, if you must take the picture and send it, send it to your mother. She’ll send you a care package or come over and make you some tea. Or just don’t take the picture. While we’re fully on board with selfies as a form of personal expression, these just seem pitifully self-indulgent.
Don’t talk about your rebound.
Your first impulse may be to try to make your ex jealous and share wild (less than factual) tales from your new single exploits. It’s only natural. On top of that, you’ll probably seek out some easy comfort to ease the pain of a breakup. However, this doesn’t mean that you’ll make the best choices, and unless you are the luckiest bastard in the entire world, your rebound hookup may be more than a little embarrassing. Best to keep it on the down low.
Seriously, don’t tweet when you’re drunk.
“In vino veritas” might be true, but that doesn’t mean that you should splash all your feelings all over Twitter. In order to save yourself from future embarrassment, it may be for the best to have your most trusted friend change your password and not give it to you until you’re in a better state of mind. Sure, you may miss out on the latest trending topics, but you do have one less outlet with which to utterly destroy your dignity.