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I was at an 18th birthday party when I first considered breaking up with my high school sweetheart.
His birthday in fact.
We had graduated from school just months earlier, a time in which a three-year relationship felt like forever, and I was particularly intrigued by a Danish plus-one who was a few years older than me.
When he leaned in to kiss me (in my boyfriend's house!!!) I dodged it — reluctantly.
It was a very brief exchange with someone who would be heading home in a few weeks, yet a seed had been planted.
After spending my most influential teenage years with one guy, I wondered, is it really worth it?
Watch: Relationship deal breakers. Post continues below.
James* and I were perfect on paper.
We were both mature and intelligent, complimenting each other's traits. My family loved him like a second son.
But after three years together, the spark between us dwindled. Right in time for my first year of university.
It was clear to me at the three-and-a-half year mark we would never last. I spent hours complaining to friends about him, who would suggest I break up with him, at which point I would promptly shut down the conversation.
Yes, I was no longer excited, but I was fine. We had good days. But most of all, life was complicated enough. I didn't have time to fit a breakup into the mix.