Break ups in real life are obviously way worse than fictional ones, but the fictional ones can still really sting. And really, is there any good way to break up with someone? I mean, how diplomatic can you be when you're essentially handing the other person their soul and hearts and guts on a platter and saying, "Sorry about that. I just don't really actually like you anymore"?
Anyway, here are a few of the worst ones I know of in YA literature.
Obviously, there be SPOILERS in these waters, so ye be warned.
Bella and Edward from New Moon
You know where I would choose to break up with the slightly unbalanced girl with codependency issues who is incapable of basic life skills like walking and not dying? In the forest. Obviously the best way possible to break up with someone who pledged to kill herself if you ever die, and who has the lowest self esteem in history, is by lying to her and making her feel as shitty as possible and then fluttering off and leaving behind nothing but your glorious vampire scent. Edward, you are a douche.
Bella and Jacob from Eclipse
You know where I would choose to break up with the muscled and friendly werewolf boy who, yes, rape-kissed me until I broke my hand (let it never be said that Jacob didn't at least try to win the Douche Olympics against Edward), but also risked his life to save mine in an epic battle? Why, I'd choose the moment after said battle, when every bone in his body has been broken by a baby vamp and then REBROKEN by a handsome doctor vamp, and he's currently lying in his poky little bedroom in agony and I've just pledged to marry another. That is the moment I would choose to say,
Henry the VIII and Anne Boleyn/Catherine Howard from Tarnish and Gilt by Katherine Longshore, respectively
Nothing says, "It's not me, it's you," like chopping off a girl's head.
Kai and Cinder from Cinder by Marissa Meyer:
Nothing says, "Thanks for coming to the ball, darling!" like throwing your Lunar cyborg girlfriend in prison.
Harry and Cho from Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix
Cho basically has a freakout about Harry and Hermione being friends, even though they're the greatest non-romantic relationship in history. Then she starts talking about her dead boyfriend and all the other guys who asked her out. While this, technically, wasn't their exact breakup scene (I think the last convo they had was about Marietta "SNEAK" Edgcombe and how Cho has shitty taste in friends), it was the nail in the coffin.
|ALTERNATE SHIPPING THEORY: Hedric. Carry. Pottery. OMG POTTERY.|
Harry and Ginny from Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince
Harry, you know I love you, and I know you're being all noble and self-sacrificing and shit by breaking up with your lady love so Voldemort doesn't kill her (like he's killed EVERYBODY ELSE YOU LOVE), but... Dumbledore's funeral? Is this really the moment to crush her heart? When she's sitting in front of his tomb, and Ron and Hermione are sobbing right next to her, and Hagrid is howling so loudly that only Grawp the giant can comfort him? I bet that made the ride back home on the Hogwarts Express rather awkward.
Kai and Elliot from For Darkness Shows the Stars by Diana Peterfreund
Technically this breakup happens before the book begins, but OOF, is it a rough one. He asks her to run away with him all romantically and swoonily and she...says no. She's ultimately RIGHT (ish), but man, is that cold.
Jonathan and Alanna from The Woman Who Rides Like a Man by Tamora Pierce
JONATHAN YOU COMPLETE JERKFACE.
Aspen and America from The Selection by Kiera Cass
Ugh. So. I have a lot of OPINIONS about Asspen... um, Aspen, rather... but my hatred for this douchebucket was cemented when he crushed America's heart in that tree house before she ever even went to the palace. I'm not the biggest America lover, but that is COLD, BROTHER. Also, it led to America whining and moping for the next two hundred pages, so thanks for that. Asspen.
Nikki and Jack from Everneath by Brodi Ashton
Erroneously accusing someone of cheating then vanishing into a shadowy abyss where monsters feed on your soul for six months is kind of the worst way to end things with someone. Or maybe that's just me.
Jared and Kami from Unspoken by Sarah Rees Brennan
JAAAAAAREDDD WHYYYYY? Why with such coldness, such cruelty? Which did you lie your sensitive little face off and tell her she's NOTHING SPECIAL? Why?
What YA breakups have left you traumatized, or did you think were particularly brutal? I left a bunch off this list, obviously, mostly because I can't remember the details (like, I'm pretty sure Michael and Mia had an awful breakup in one of the Princess Diaries books, but can't for the life of me remember specifics).