How to Know You're Going to Get Turkey Dumped

Sometimes the holidays can bring out the worst in a relationship, which means there's a pretty good chance you may find yourself dumped this Thanksgiving season. Our friends at AskMen decided to get a man's perspective on the topic and some tips for how you can prepare yourself.


Breakups are hard, no matter who you are. Having your heart broken — or breaking someone else's heart — is never pleasant. Even less pleasant? When it qualifies as a turkey dump.

Yes, having your personal tragedy described by others as something that sounds like what Uncle Ned took in the downstairs bathroom after the Thanksgiving feast is like putting insultberry sauce on top of your roast injury. But turkey dumps are a real thing, my friends, and turkey dump season is fast approaching.

So how do you know if you're about to get unsuspectingly turkey dumped? Well, first, let's examine what a turkey dump is.

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In its purest form, it's a breakup that happens over Thanksgiving to first-year university students, high-school sweethearts who tragically part ways after promising each other they'd stay true and do the long-distance thing after being admitted to separate colleges.

It goes like this — one (or both, though this isn't standard) person in the relationship starts blossoming like a flower at uni. Explores new interests. Makes new friends. Goes to cool parties. Realizes (!) boring ol' boy/girlfriend back home isn't remotely as interesting as all these college hunks/babes. Hems. Haws. Being a good person, decides not to do the breakup via phone/text/email/Skype/Kik/Snapchat/Yo/etc. Only solution? Meet up over Thanksgiving (potentially at a Starbucks) and deliver the killing turkey dump blow.

If you're said person, you're pretty much in the clear. All you need to do is go through the standard script: It's not you, it's me; I just feel like things aren't the same anymore; I think this is for the best; I hope we can stay friends but if you need some time and space then that's fine; all the best.

But what if you're the other person? What if your sweetheart has been secretly outgrowing you? Here are some classic tell-tale warning signs that you're going to be single after next weekend:

  • She asks to meet up on the last day of the holiday.
  • She hasn't invited you over to see her family.
  • She cancels seeing you on the first night because she's getting in too late.
  • She posted a "heading home and can't wait to see so-and-so!" but didn't tag you.
  • She's been taking forever to respond to your texts.
  • Her best friend tells you how she totally stared at that long-haired guy in Mixed Ultimate Frisbee on Tuesday.
  • She has a "whole new look" and is clearly trying to distance herself from her old hobbies and interests.
  • She casually references the fact that she's been hanging out with members of her school's football/basketball/[insert other attractive athletic pursuit here] team.
  • She's been acting distant and weird over the past few weeks, but still asks to see you on one particular day when she's home for the holidays — and not at home.
  • She's been mentioning this new guy Ryan who's in three of her classes, how random is that? Plus, he totally taught her how to play hacky-sack with his friends! They're just great.
  • She texts you — "We need to talk."

So if that's you, how do you handle an impending turkey dump? Well, you're not going to like the sound of this, but you have to just let it happen.

The truth is, turkey dumps hurt, but they're necessary. In the grand scheme of things, the turkey dump is a necessary eliminator of future high-school-sweetheart divorces. High school relationships are great, but they're not meant to last. You're choosing a partner based on a small pool of unformed half-human hormonal weirdos. College is about debt learning, but it's also about learning about yourself — who you are, what you're looking for, and what it's like to be young and wild.

However many good memories you have of it, your high school relationship wasn't meant to last, and trying to prolong it past its due date will only hold both of you back. (Plus, going to post-finals parties will now come with a drastically reduced chance of you drunkenly cheating on anyone. Bonus!) So while getting broken up with during the holidays is terrible — relatives just love to ask you whether you're dating anyone — at least you won't have to buy an expensive Christmas gift for your girlfriend. And plus, we guarantee when you meet your first college girlfriend, you'll be so, so glad you got turkey dumped.

— Alex Manley

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