In the throes of new love, who among us ever wants to entertain the possibility of splitting up? It’s unthinkable. And when we’ve made vows, promising in front of witnesses (and, depending on your beliefs, in front of God), to stay together until we permanently expire, the idea that either party will ever have a change of heart simply doesn’t occur to us or, if it does, we swat it away as if it were a persistent wasp, troubling us quite unbidden on a hot day. But relationships end. Not all of them, no, but most of them, yes. From infancy, we’re bombarded with messages about true love. From films, art, music and theatre, the messages come thick and fast, programming us with the idea that anything other than long-lasting, true love with the perfect soul-mate is somehow aberrant. In fact, it’s perfectly normal. A relationship being finite does not mean it ‘failed’ or that it wasn’t worth having. It’s time to go easy on ourselves and realise that the fact that our relationship has had a shelf-life is not some terrible judgment on our worth. There’s enough upheaval as it is, so why add to it with self-flagellation, deep dark nights of the soul and unnecessary, morbid rumination? Better to get on with the business in hand, and part of that may be the need to rethink our living arrangements.