The Hardest Part of Breaking Up Is Getting Rid of Your Stuff

Rachel’s Team Pick:

Breaking up is hard to do.  There are infinity and one impossible things to do — telling your friends, returning the keys to their apartment, remembering that you don’t have to remember to buy a birthday present for their mother. Among the impossible things is figuring out what to do with their stuff, which is also sort of your stuff because it’s in your apartment and your laundry bin and book case, because until last week it was both of your stuff.  What on earth are you going to do with it? Can you even bear to think about it? Well, while you may not have much more than time on your side as far as the rest of the breakup goes, there’s finally something that might help you out as far as the eight pieces of Tupperware and Sarah McLachlan tote bag: there’s now a “post-relationship” startup that can get that shit out of your apartment and out of your heart.

Never Liked It Anyway is like a version of eBay that happens on your mom’s sofa, where you can get rid of the wedding dress or the charm bracelet or the pastel drawing of Tegan (or was it Sara???) while also getting off your chest the story behind it. If that’s not enough for you, hey, just click on the “Moving On Manual” for reader-based suggestions on what to do with your life when it still sucks even after you’ve gotten rid of their last hoodie, even if you don’t have any of your books back.

Life is too short to carry around someone else’s baggage in your heart well after they’re out of your life, and it’s definitely way too short to carry their old economics textbooks and Snuggies around your tiny one-bedroom apartment that doesn’t even have room to fit your toaster. What do you need to move on from?

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Originally from Boston, MA, Rachel now lives in the Midwest. Topics dear to her heart include bisexuality, The X-Files and tacos. Her favorite Ciara video is probably "Ride," but if you're only going to watch one, she recommends "Like A Boy." You can follow her on twitter and instagram.

Rachel has written 1142 articles for us.


    • …and people say life gets cheaper when you’re single and don’t have to buy random stuff for your girlfriend anymore. Sex toys are expensive!

    • Are you one of those people who believes dildos cannot be reused on a future partner? I’ve heard that sentiment a few times and just can’t wrap my head around throwing out a perfectly good sex toy. It’s not like silicone would decompose in a landfill anytime soon.

    • I found a solution to that. The ex wanted it more than I did, so I sold it to said ex and used that money to buy a new toy.

      Supply, demand, sex.

    • well, it’s not like i wanted to give up my prized purple rain collection of purple dildos (for some reason, queer ppl like purple and gold and red and glitter and shit) but she won’t give them back.
      what do i say, “hey, i’m sorry to hear that you’re not fucking but i am and so i need prince, panther, prince jr., princesa, and purple rain back-good luck in your future of not fucking…i hope you won’t continue to be bat shit crazy?” that doesn’t work.
      so yeah. are dildo reparations a thing yet?

      • Holy christ Luna you’re my hero. That’s exactly how I feel! My ex actually asked if she could have mine because she wasn’t sleeping with anyone and I was. I was like woman, have you lost your mind?!

  1. When I read the title of this, I immediately thought of the song “The Hardest Part of Breaking Up is Getting Back Your Stuff” by the fictional boyband 2Gether. This was something MTV came up back in the golden age of N*SYNC and a bunch of other “bands” that I ignored because I was really into the Spice Girls (go figure). ANYWAY it is a hilarious song, with such lyrical gems as “So tell me girl, do I have to say please, or do I have to involve the police? There was a time when I trust you alone. I’d call you up girl, but you took my phone”.

    • My sister and I LOVED 2Gether. That shit was hilarious.

      I think getting rid of their stuff (or stuff that was too much yours together to bear keeping, even if you still really like it) is a lot easier than getting your own stuff back. Because getting your stuff back requires contacting them, which sometimes you just really don’t want to do. I’ve sacrificed favorite hats and several DVDs and CDs to the breakup gods when contacting her to ask for it back was just not conducive to my mental health.

    • While I know of that group, I didn’t catch the reference. Instead, I sang the title like the Folgers jingle, “the best part of waking up, is Folgers in your cup.” The corporations have my brain.

  2. I got dumped in the most horrid kinda way, last year. She didn’t return my favorite jacket, my grandmother’s ring, or anything that in a way had significant value to me. After she did the most fucked up thing she could think doing to me, I came home and burned all her stuff, including pictures, and toys (sorry environmentalists, I had to) in my backyard, and never looked back. She never asked for anything back because she knows her stuff is gone. In the meanwhile, I get messages on random Tuesday nights saying that if I want my grandma’s ring and my jacket, I have to come in person to her house to get them.

    • Last time I went to her house, I brought my brother with me, she didn’t open the door, but she had her cousin tell me that she wouldn’t return my stuff unless I came alone. I decided to let her keep those things, apparently she needs them more than I do.

      • I tried the cops before. Nada. She likes games and bullshit, so if I want my stuff back, we have to be friends… and I honestly rather do a cannonball on a pool of cactuses (or is it cacti?) than having to deal with her Shannen Doherty crazy bitch antics. Everything we lose has a way of coming back to us in the end, so it’s all good.

  3. I’ve often wondered whether it would be better for my mental health to throw out all the stuff she gave me/all the stuff I stole from her closet…but like at this point “stuff that she bought or gave me” includes: 1. my favorite leather jacket that I wear every single day 2. 3/4 of all of the necklaces I own 3. one of two dresses. 3. all of my t-shirts except for one?

    I threw out the dress because really, I guess it was only like $20, but does breaking up mean completely purging your closet and spending $200 on another leather jacket? Sigh. I’m not letting my next girlfriend buy me ANYTHING.

  4. My ex and I broke up just before the Holidays started so I had/have a bunch of presents that I bought her lying around (diamond necklace, Banksy painting on posterboard, matroshka). First week I couldn’t even look at it, but now i’m trying to figure out what to do with it. I’m not sure the Banksy and Matroshka are very sellable and the urge to keep the diamond necklace is really really strong. Would that be unclassy?

  5. BCW: That’s true I did buy it and it’s a cute little penguin, but it’s kinda sentimental because it’s a penguin? I’m thinking of trying it out and seeing if it stirs up any sadness, if it doesn’t then I claim full ownership!

    Bhan:I’ll take a look at Ebay for the Banksy, but I might end up keeping that too. It’s one of my favorite pieces of his I just don’t really have room in the apartment in it.

    Maria: Banksy is amazing! And that’s very sweet of you to say =)

    Thanks for all the advice guys!

  6. When my first ex and I broke up in 2007, my new gf prodded me into destroying any reminders of her, which I later regretted. So after we broke up in 2009, I boxed up any little mementos, including the polo she was wearing the night we met, and duct taped the box and haven’t opened it since. Idk, I guess I’m just a big softie.

    • You aren’t the only weird softie that does this….. I may or may not have a small travel suitcase full of strange mementos from relationships/travels/friends etc.

      • I keep a small suitcase of mementos too! Technically it’s my grandma’s old train case (for makeup) and it still smells like powder, which is lovely.

  7. I still have everything my exes bought for me, except for my first relationship when I was like 14. My first boyfriend was a giant jerk and I tossed all the stuff that reminded me of him in the fire in a fit of angst. Other than him though no one has ever angered me enough to cancel out my cheapness lol

  8. When my college girlfriend cheated on me, I immediately stuck everything of hers in the mail and sent it to her the day after I found out (it was a long distance relationship), mostly to prevent that back-and-forth-not-quite-ready-to-break-up-in-between-stage of an inevitable break-up. It was my way of ensuring proper closure. Since then, though, I have donated things from exes to the gay second-hand store…hmmm, I wonder if that store is full of things people don’t want from their exes. LOL.

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