DEAR NATALIE: I recently broke up with my girlfriend after dating for eight months. She was a great person, and I have no ill will toward her. We just didn't have the right chemistry to make it last long term. Anyway, we broke up a few days ago, and I'm wondering if it is too soon to change my Facebook status and other social media accounts back to "single." She's really hurt by our breakup, and we are friends on social media, which makes it harder. My guy friends say it's fine and I should just update it, but my girlfriends say it's rude to do it this quickly. They say I should wait at least a month. But, I plan on dating other people and don't want anyone to think I am involved with someone when I'm not. What do you think? And should I take down all of our photos, too? -- STATUS UPDATE REQUESTED
DEAR STATUS UPDATE REQUESTED: I'm sorry to hear that things didn't work out, but it's good that you know yourself well enough to know when something just isn't right. Nothing would be worse than being led on because the other person is too afraid to end things over fear of hurting feelings. In the end, you did yourself and your ex both a favor.
As far as social media goes, why does everyone need to know your status, anyway? I say take down your relationship "status" and leave a little bit of mystery to be discovered. Everyone makes everything so public but there really isn't a reason to have all of that information online. If you are a die-hard-must-let-everyone-know kind of a person, I say wait another week. Let everything settle down, cool off and have a minute to rest before changing your status.
I, personally, would not remove photos because that is part of my history, my past, and it meant something to me at the time. If this is how you feel, too, then let the photos stay up (unless they are not safe for work, but why would you have those on Facebook, anyway?). Some relationships that blow up in your face may warrant taking down pictures, but if the memories are good, why run from them?
Please send your relationship and lifestyle questions to firstname.lastname@example.org or tweet them to @NBSeen. You can also send postal letters to Natalie Bencivenga, 358 North Shore Drive, Pittsburgh, PA 15212
(This column was originally published by the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette.)