“…’Cause my shackles, you won’t be; And my rapture, you won’t believe.”


Recent events with my brother prompted this post.

As usual, I take a micro event (a slice of my life) and make it a macro lesson.

How to handle a break-up like a man:

1} Be polite. Harsh words will only paint you to be the asshole you most likely aren’t. End things civilly; disregard all attempts at dragging you into crass behavior.

2} Understand that, no matter what, you will be portrayed as the bad guy/instigator. Yes, the onus of getting a woman is on you as is losing one. Contrary to what the world will try to tell you – gender defines you.

3} Have sex with another woman as quickly as possible. A woman willing to sleep with you is willing to do just about anything else for you. This means, if you bed her, it’s very probable you have her in all other areas (or she is at least amenable to other options). A woman does not have this benefit from the same activity. This advice works for men and not women because sex is an end for men but a means for women.

4} Remember, women have a 463 bullet point checklist for men to meet. Men have 2 – youth and beauty. She will be easier to replace than you will be.

5} Her friends will tell her anything to make her feel better. Not to mention the fact that most of this advice will be counterproductive, considering the nature of female interaction. It’s also why a woman’s female friends will never suggest any type of self-improvement. All humans are in competition with one another – and that’s how women compete for the best men. De facto, this will make it much harder for her to replace you.

6} Realize you lost her because you screwed up. Tighten your Game, get in better shape, etc.

7} Understand that she will consider herself better off without you. And she is correct – for the moment. Do not expect her to miss you, mourn for losing you or pine for your attention. In this world of instant (internet) validation, she will be backed up by her friends (that want to keep her single AND out of the competitive pool) along with men that want to fuck her.

8} Do not contact/stalk her. As above, she doesn’t miss you and you will only learn things you would Truly rather not know. Give her time. As my father said (and it was brilliant) – if a woman wants to be with a man, nothing on earth will stop her from going after him. Never – not once – have I seen this disproven.

9} Have confidence in who you are. If you’re even half decent, it’s only a matter of time before she realizes what a prize she lost. Don’t wait for that, however. If her SMV is high enough, she won’t even remember she was married to you let alone shared a few drinks.

10} Understand most men have no Game. And most women don’t realize that their Game needs to adapt to their (quickly) decreasing SMV. This knowledge alone will be a comfort to the wise.

Extra Credit: Most of all, keep in mind [as it’s been said countless times] that women are the gatekeepers to sex; men are the gatekeepers to commitment. Sure, she will be banging another man mere days after the two of you split (I know from personal experience) but that’s no guarantee that she’ll find a fulfilling relationship before you do.

The world is harsh place.

The sooner you realize this:

The sooner you’ll prosper.




31 Responses to ““…’Cause my shackles, you won’t be; And my rapture, you won’t believe.””

  1. YouSoWould Says:

    “if a woman wants to be with a man, nothing on earth will stop her from going after him. Never – not once – have I seen this disproven.” – too true. My current girlfriend, despite never one having stepped out of her comfort zone to initiate contact with a man, pursued me relentlessly, surprising herself at her own behaviour.

    • Very true, YSW; an aroused/attracted woman is a mighty force of nature to behold. She is fully committed to the goal and will stop at nothing. It’s one occasion when women are tightly focused. Phew.

      Solid advice, Ace. Hope it helps him, somewhat, that you have his back. Too often the advice falls on deaf ears.

    • Although I’m pleased for you, ysw:

      I’m unsurprised.

  2. I liken #9 to this statement.

    You can be sully and ignorant…but if you have guts, guts is enough.

    Or in the case of women…game is enough.

  3. I’m also glad this world is a harsh place.

    It’s the only way to stay alive in it.

  4. Love the opening tune. Underrated tune from a vastly underrated album.

    So what if the girl you’re looking to break up with is from a cultural (Chinese) and word will quickly go through the entire community that you’re an asshole?

    • “Love the opening tune. Underrated tune from a vastly underrated album.”

      Agreed 100% on all points.

      “So what if the girl you’re looking to break up with is from a cultural (Chinese) and word will quickly go through the entire community that you’re an asshole?”

      I’ll state, clearly, that while I’m an expert at investigating human behavior– I’m not an expert on Chinese culture.

      That being said, the best advice is:

      Stay civil, polite and firm.

      A man, regardless of culture, is defined by his actions and how he conducts himself (yes, certain cultures use a caste system, but conduct/actions still carry weight).

      I do hope that provides some help to you.

  5. Yep It's Me Says:

    First, I really like Vertical Horizon.

    Second, thanks for the list, too bad I’m reading about two years from the event and about a year after I made a complete fool of myself (walking on my beta knees, drying her heart felt tears as she told me how “I made her feel like she was invisible and not even human, and listening to how she just had to do the things she did, if only to FEEL something) thinking I could make it better and get back together with her – get our old marriage back.

    Anyone that finds this article, while in the throws of a breakup (especially a marriage or LTR) need to read it several times, print it out, maybe even record it to play as the background as they lift some heavy weights. If it has happened, understand that will walk through shit, but it can be washed off – you are not what you walk through.

    Enjoyed it – found you through RoK – will be back.

    • Many thanks for the compliment and the comment.

      Looking forward to having you here.

      Side note: I was enormously impressed with how you handled yourself in a recent thread on Rationale Male.

      Good man.

  6. It’s easy for a man to lose himself in a woman – and all of the noise that comes with her. We can forget what we truly are – under the civil, domesticated facade. And then, one day, a rude awakening…

    It unravels, and the debris spreads far and wide.

    When the moment comes, avoid the visceral temptation to let it all burn. Dig deep for self-control. Keep your dignity intact and don’t add to your list of regrets.

    Contrary to #3, I wouldn’t fall into another woman’s arms. I would want a real friend, one who is absolutely NOT a woman. First and foremost, get yourself back on track in the company of other men. They can keep you back from serious harm until good sense returns.

  7. […] Have sex with another woman as quickly as possible. A woman willing to sleep with you is willing to … […]

  8. Good advice Ace.

    Alan, a minor quibble: Ace didn’t say “fall into another woman’s arms”. He said “have sex with another woman as soon as possible”.

    There’s a difference.

    Have sex. Don’t fall in love.

    The sex meets a basic need: sexual release. It also helps us know, realize and recognize that we still have what it takes to get that basic need met.

    • Fair enough, Deti. However, I’ll gladly take up the opposing view.

      You’re assuming that the two [sex release versus any deeper involvement] can be kept apart? That’s a tricky path, my friend, both biologically and morally. Care to offer a defense for it?

      Also, I am compelled to mention that I don’t want a purely sexual encounter with a woman. I find it disconcerting. Am I too far out of the mainstream, linking these two facets of sexual relations?

      Granted, physical desire is a deeply ingrained instinct, and it is highly pleasurable, but I can’t equate it with breathing or eating. I wish to keep it within its proper [as I define it] role in my life and relations toward women.

      We can pursue this here or elsewhere, but I would suggest doing so in person, in Vegas. I hope to enjoy a few face to face conversations like this. [And have a little fun.] With intelligent, well-spoken men. You up for it?

      • Deti & Alan,

        As I often say – most recently to yousowould – you’re on the right track but you’re disembarking the train on a station platform a bit too early.

        The reasons I advocate sex are:

        1} As Deti said, the physical need.

        2} Sex helps to build confidence more than tear it down (there are always exceptions, of course).

        3} The work it takes to get there is a great way to stay sharp while avoiding other, more deleterious behaviors.

        4} If a man doesn’t want sex, that’s fine. But be very, very certain the reason is his, rather than fear or a lack of options. Deception will only hurt the liar; it will gain him nothing and cost him more than he initially believes.

        5} A woman is more likely (though not guaranteed) to pair emotional investment with sex than a man is. Hence, I said it as I did.

        I do hope you both find this added insight helpful.

      • I appreciate your reasoning, both for and against, Ace. Healing can be a tough needle to thread.

        As you plainly said, know the score and make the right choice. Fear and desperation are lousy motivators. Avoid digging a deeper hole before climbing out. Best to you.

      • Thank you, Alan.

        Glad you found it useful.

        To be doubly clear:

        I meant both fear of being alone and fear of women/sexual activity.

        Either can cause the pendulum to move in an unwanted direction.

    • Thank you, Deti.

  9. […] Advice for a break-up. Related: Closure is BS. […]

  10. Bryce Laliberte Says:

    I wish all this had been told to me right after, instead of having to put it all together on my own in the following months after I’d made all those mistakes. Gonna keep this up my sleeve for any friends who ever go through a break up of their own. The advice of just going straight incommunicado with them is the most important. A girl who would decide to break up with her man for less than sufficient reasons isn’t a girl worth trying to “reason” with afterwards anyway, even if you thought she was the one who would be different. Harsh, but that’s life (and the Beam you’ll be drinking).

    • Well said, Bryce.

      “…put it all together on my own in the following months after I’d made all those mistakes.”

      You certainly learned faster than I.

      Kudos to you.

      “Harsh, but that’s life (and the Beam you’ll be drinking).”

      Too True.

      And that’s my brand, by the way [hence my blog title and twitter handle].

  11. The part you miss here – initiative – if you sense a break up looms – what action do you take?

    It helps to have guidance on how to end it on your terms, no?


    • Wald,

      Not really.

      If you Truly want it over, there’s little need be said.

      Just pull the trigger.

      That simple.

      Of course, you must Truly want it over.

      Otherwise, wait for her to do it.

      • Why do you say wait for it?

        I mean, could you explain the reasoning behind it?


      • I think we’ve had this conversation once or twice.

        I can definitely say that, it sucks to be in a position where it’s ending and you don’t know why or how to fix it.

        But letting it happen, accepting it, and not trying to stop it has led two girls, one of my first and one of my last girlfriends to both keep me in their minds years after the break up happened.


  12. […] “…’Cause my shackles, you won’t be; my rapture, you won’t believe.&#82… (Vertical Horizon – Shackled) […]

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