How Long Should a Relationship Break Be?

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Can relationship breaks be “relationship renovations”? “We need to take a break” is a bitter phrase none of us want to face in a relationship. But if a break worked for Ross Geller and Rachel Green, it should be good for you too, right? 

Relationship breaks should generally not last longer than a month – any longer may cause a breakup. Breaks due to arguments should typically last a few hours to a day; however, serious relationship problems and external factors may take longer to resolve, requiring a few days to a month to resolve.

Taking a relationship break isn’t always a bad idea- it can be healing. However, breaks that go on for too long may lead to an actual breakup. Continue reading to find out exactly how long relationship breaks should be.

Is it OK to Take a Relationship Break?

Breaks are tough and rarely enjoyable for either partner, yet you may find yourself in a position where issues feel unsolvable, leaving you forced to take a break. 

When a situation is overly complicated, a break might give you the needed distance to gain clarity. My perspective, however, would be only to take a break once you’ve reached the point in a relationship where there is no other way to resolve the problem other than taking a break.

A break is positive in that once you step away from the problem, it becomes easier to get a clear perspective of what’s really going on. However, breaks require partners to take time apart to weigh how you feel together versus separated. Only then can you determine which option is better for you. 

Breaks allow partners to acknowledge their wrongdoings and determine what changes need to be made to fix the issues, and in some unfortunate cases, they realize that they’d rather call it quits. 

However, when both commit to undergoing honest self-reflection, the relationship usually ends up stronger. This is because both partners have time to reflect on what they need from the relationship and what they need to work on to ensure that the other partner is also fulfilled.

See a break as a “relationship renovation”!

How Do I Know if a Break is Right for My Relationship?

The essence of a relationship break is to give each partner time to revaluate what they want. Relationship breaks are for partners who care for one another and want their relationship to work but can’t manage to see eye-to-eye.

A break is not the answer if you’re interested in seeing other people or just too afraid to end the relationship. Breaks need to be for the right reasons. 

If you are in a relationship for the long haul but have a tough time getting on the same page, a break might be just what you need. A break can be a healing time for a couple; it is a time to reflect on what you really want. However, both partners should be willing to take time apart to really reflect and to find solutions. 

Related: How Long Does It Take to Fall Out of Love?

How Long Should a Relationship Break be?

Taking a break in a relationship is unsettling and high unpredictable; will you get back together after the break or call it quits for good? Remember that the timespan of a relationship break isn’t set in stone, and you should do what works for you. 

If the relationship is important to you, you may want to get the break over and done with as quickly as possible; however, getting in touch with your partner too soon might lead to bigger problems, ultimately leading to another unwanted break.

Relationship breaks vary from different relationships to types of problems. Some last a couple of hours and others can take as long as a month or more.

That’s why the length of the relationship break should vary depending on the specific issue you’re currently dealing with.

Side note: Just because you and your partner took a break doesn’t mean that your issues will disappear. However, it gives you the needed time and a better chance to approach the relationship with a fresh view and fix what was broken.

Related: What is More Than Love in a Relationship

The Most Common Reason for Relationship Breaks

Hundreds of factors contribute to conflict in relationships, with the intensity of each varying immensely. Some of these issues are quickly resolved, whether it be through a heart-felt apology, compromising, or even a slight argument. However, sometimes a break and time apart is the only option to resolve these disputes. 

Here are the most common reasons for relationship breaks: 

A Break Caused by an Argument

Arguments can heat up really fast with partners exchanging hurtful words or raising their voices, and to the contrary, they can turn ice cold just as quickly when two people can’t figure out how to see eye to eye and instead, hold grudges and give the silent treatment. 

Regardless of what caused the argument or how it played out, in the end, if both sides fail to resolve the fight, they may be left with no other option than to take a break.

How Long Should a Relationship Break be from an Argument?

Breaks caused by arguments should be short – create some distance to first calm down, then revaluate the argument and clear your heads. If the breaks are cut too soon, it can cause yet another argument. 

It generally takes from an hour to a day or two to resolves these kinds of disputes. 

To sum it up, the break should be a short breather to recollect your thoughts before rediscussing whatever caused the argument in the first place.

A Break Caused by Serious Relationship Problems 

Serious relationship problems may be one large issue or a bunch of negative factors all contributing to form a large problem. 

When couples feel too overwhelmed to deal with all the small issues that lead to constant arguments, unhappiness, and dissatisfaction, taking a break may be the only way to restore peace and try to find solutions. 

How Long Should a Relationship Break Caused by Serious Problems Be?

The most difficult type of relationship breaks and probably the longest breaks are from serious relationship problems. 

It is normal for couples to feel misunderstood and to have disagreements now and then; however if you find yourself stuck in a space where nothing seems to be working anymore, and it’s as if everything keeps tearing you two apart, it may be best to take a break.

Breaks often help to resolve the “invisible wall” between you two. In addition, a break may give you a breather to gain a new perspective on things. These breaks tend to last between two weeks and up to a month.

Remember that extending a break does not magically fix your problems; unfortunately, it doesn’t work that way. In reality, when breaks last too long, they make actual breakup more likely. Therefore, try not to take a break that lasts longer than a month. 

A Break Caused by External Factors

Lastly, external factors are prevalent factors leading to relationship breaks; they may cause either one or both partners to call it quits for a while.

It’s instinctive for people to withdraw for a while when they face problems, the reason being fear of judgment and rejection and not wanting to burden the other partner. So, instead of opening up about insecurity or stressor, they suggest taking a break instead. 

These external factors may include the following:

  • Family conflict
  • Work issues
  • Health issues
  • Unsupportive friends
  • Distance 

How Long Should a Relationship Break be from External Factors?

External factors tend to be tricky, mainly because the problem isn’t really between the two of you, and therefore, may, unfortunately, last longer than other breaks. 

You may sense the other partner is feeling down or something is bothering them, but they might not be willing to talk about the issue and instead insist on some time apart.

These types of breaks tend to last between a day and up to a week. 

However, please note that taking a break from each other may be a healthy compromise. Still, as the relationship grows and strengthens, partners should trust one another with these feelings and issues. 

Related: 10 Problems Empaths Typically Have in Relationships

Final Thoughts

There are hundreds of reasons that cause partners not to see eye to eye. 

When you and your partner realize that the issue can’t be resolved by anything else other than some time apart, follow your gut feeling and rather take the break than have the whole relationship shatter to pieces. 

Generally speaking, the bigger the problem between partners, the longer the relationship break should be. However, the length of a break depends on each relationship’s needs and reasons for the break.

Keep in mind that if you truly want your relationship to work, both partners need to effectively use what they learned during the break to better the relationship. Remember, breaks do not solve everything- they simply create a space for a fresh perspective.

How Long Should a Relationship Break Be?

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