Here are 7 of the most common breakup times:

1. Within the first two months

“60% of unmarried relationships break up within 2 months and 70% end within 1 year.” Source: Social Science Data Collection. Stanford University, California

Despite seeming to start off well or have the potential to last, many relationships don’t make it past 2 months.


For one or more of the following reasons:

  • A lack of attraction: Sometimes a woman gets with a guy that she isn’t very attracted to (e.g. he’s a nice guy who is too soft, gentle and kind to her. He lacks edge, or doesn’t know how to be a playful challenge in the relationship). Despite not feeling very attracted, she gives him a chance because he had the courage to ask her out, or because she is using him to hopefully get over an ex. She then tries to stick with the relationship, but doesn’t feel motivated to do so due to a lack of attraction.
  • Initially attracted, but then turned off: Sometimes a woman is initially drawn to certain qualities in a man (e.g. he seems confident and emotionally strong, he makes her laugh and smile, he makes her feel like a desirable woman in his presence, he seems like a good guy). Yet, after a few weeks of dating, she realizes that he is mostly the opposite of what she once thought (e.g. he’s insecure rather than confident, he’s silly rather than funny, he’s jealous and clingy rather than laid back and independent, he’s emotionally selfish and isn’t the good guy she assumed he was). Likewise, sometimes a guy gets with a woman and initially feels attracted to her, but then after having sex with her a few times, he realizes that he’s just not that into her. Alternatively, she starts out being nice, friendly and warm, but then starts being mean, nasty and cold, which really turns him off.
  • Never planned on settling down, or didn’t want anything serious: Many people get into new, dating relationships just for the sex, or for something to do for a while. Yet, they have no intention of settling down. So, when the other person pushes for or hints at commitment within the first couple of months, they leave.
  • A lack of compatibility: Sometimes a man and a woman will feel attracted to each other physically, but won’t be emotionally compatible (e.g. the guy is too insecure, so she can’t really connect with him. Alternatively, she’s more family-oriented, whereas he just wants to have fun and not commit to anything too serious).

So, despite things seeming to start off really well (e.g. great sex, fun dates, enjoying spending time together), a breakup will often happen before the first two months are up.

Another common breakup time is…

2. Within the first year

Breakup within the first year

For a relationship to last, there has to be more than just a superficial attraction between the man and woman.

For example: They need to …

  • Want the same things in life (e.g. to move in together, settle down, get married and start a family, pursue their respective careers, go traveling together) and be heading towards that as time goes by.
  • Have similar beliefs and values (e.g. prefer to stay at home and focus on studies or work, or prefer to party and living a carefree lifestyle, have the same, or similar political views).
  • Have big goals or dreams that they’re working towards achieving together, rather than just drifting along as a couple without any real purpose.
  • Be able to feel more respect for each other over time, based on who they are becoming as a couple, as well as who they are as individuals.
  • Feel like life is better when they are together.
  • Feel optimistic and happy about being together in the long term, rather than anxious, stressed or unsure.

Many relationships can last more than a year if those elements aren’t in place, but the couple won’t be happy.

As a result, it will eventually lead to a breakup if things don’t change, regardless of how good things were at the start of the relationship.

3. Around the time of the 7 year itch

According to US Census data, the average marriage lasts 8 years, which is just a little longer than what is known as the ‘7 Year Itch.’

The 7 year itch refers to a stage in a relationship where one or both of the people involved feel the urge to leave, or be with someone new.

This happens to a couple when the love, respect and attraction and has faded due to an ineffective relationship dynamic (e.g. too much power for one individual, one or both taking the other for granted), or due to selecting someone that they weren’t truly attracted to at the start (i.e. the other person grew on them and they eventually gave them a chance).

4. Just before, or on Valentine’s Day

A woman will often break up with a man just before, or on Valentine’s Day because:

  • She doesn’t want to spend the ‘holiday of love’ with someone whom she no longer has sexual and romantic feelings for.
  • She doesn’t want to have to lie and say that she loves him, or doesn’t want to pretend to be in love on the day.
  • She doesn’t want to waste money on a gift for a guy that she no longer truly cares about, or wants to be with.
  • She tried shopping for a gift, but didn’t feel like buying one because she’s not in love.
  • She wants to be another guy’s valentine (i.e. a guy who has been hitting on her or who has asked her out, a crush she’s had for a while, an ex).

5. Just before, or on your birthday or hers

A breakup before or on a birthday

A woman will usually break up with a guy around that time, for one or more of the following reasons:

  • She doesn’t want to pretend to have feelings for him on his birthday.
  • She wants to be around her own family and friends for her birthday and doesn’t want him there because she’s no longer in love with him, or isn’t proud of him.
  • She doesn’t like his family or friends and no longer has enough feelings for him to put up with them.
  • She knows that he expects a birthday present, or to be given extra cuddles, kisses, affection or attention on his birthday. Yet, she doesn’t feel like giving him that due to no longer being in love with him.
  • She wants to hurt him by ruining his birthday.
  • She wants a fresh start after her birthday.
  • He turns her off at her birthday party, or at his party (e.g. by being very jealous, insecure or overly protective and causing a scene that embarrasses her).
  • The fact that she doesn’t feel motivated to get him a present, or do something nice for him on his birthday (when she has done so for previous boyfriends) makes her realize that she isn’t in love with him and should break up with him now, rather than continuing on in a relationship that isn’t making her happy.
  • She never wanted to have a serious, committed relationship and only wanted a fling. So, when something ‘serious’ like a birthday comes around, she feels the urge to end the relationship, rather than pretending to want a serious relationship.

6. Leading up to Thanksgiving, Christmas, or Other Religious or Traditional Holidays

Some of the reasons why a woman (for example) will choose to end a relationship right before, or leading up to a religious or traditional holiday:

  • She doesn’t want to go to all the effort of shopping for gifts for him or his family when she no longer wants to be with him.
  • She doesn’t want to cook up a feast for his family, or friends when they are no longer going to be a part of her life (i.e. because she has been planning on leaving him for a while and now wants to go through with it).
  • She doesn’t want to go to get-togethers with his family or friends and pretend to be happy with him, or pretend to want to have more of a relationship with them.
  • She wants him to be embarrassed by the breakup to hopefully force him to change and improve the way he approaches the relationship. She hopes that his family and friends, who really like her, will give him advice on what to do to get her back and keep the relationship together.
  • He doesn’t get along well with her family or friends. So, she doesn’t want to have to continue dealing with the stress, awkwardness and tension that happens every time he is around them.
  • She’s not proud to be his girlfriend, so she dumps him prior to the holiday rather than having to introduce him to family and friends.
  • She doesn’t want to start the new year in a relationship that isn’t working (e.g. so she breaks up with him around Christmas time, or before New Year’s Eve).

7. When the Attraction Fades and it Becomes a Friendship

If the sexual and romantic attraction between a man and a woman fades away, they will eventually stop having sex, or will have sex sometimes, but it will lack passion.

Eventually, they’ll feel more like friends and then, it will only be a matter of time before the relationship ends.

Some couples do put up with just being friends in a relationship for many years or even decades, but they’re never truly happy or in love.

Something is always missing.

As a result, if a better option comes along, or one of them has the opportunity to leave the relationship (e.g. due to getting a job overseas, or having enough money to move into a place on their own), a breakup or divorce will usually happen.

The only way to prevent a breakup from happening is to:

  • Choose a woman that you are very attracted to, rather than accepting whatever you can get. That way, you feel motivated to put in the effort to make the relationship work and make her feel appreciated, loved and wanted.
  • Understand how to maintain and develop feelings of respect, attraction and love over time in a relationship. Don’t just rely on luck and hope that it happens by itself. It doesn’t. You actually need to know what you’re doing, otherwise you’ll end up as another breakup or divorce statistic.
  • Honestly love her and be patient with her as you both grow and become a better couple over time. Get her to be patient with you too, but don’t take her patience for granted. Always try to do your best to level up and improve to make the relationship more harmonious.

BTW: If you’re reading up about common breakup times because you’ve recently been dumped, then just know that you can get her back.

Likewise, if you’re worried about getting dumped soon, then know that you can stop the breakup before it happens.

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