“I Knew It Was Over When…”

Ever asked the universe for a sign about your love life? Below, real-life singles share the hilarious and bizarre moments when they realized it was time to break up with Mr. or Ms. Wrong.

By Chelsea Kaplan

t's been said that when it comes to meeting Mr. or Ms. Right, when you know, you just know. According to Robert K. Elder, founder of (a website in which men and women can anonymously post their relationship deal-breaker tales) and author of the site's companion book, It Was Over When…Tales of Romantic Dead Ends, the same theory applies to knowing when
I walked into his room and found swords hanging on his walls.
it's time to leave Mr. or Ms. Wrong. And because misery apparently loves company, Elder has found that people are not only happy to share their horror stories, they also delight in hearing about others' romantic pitfalls: "We've built a community out of it. At a party setting, occasionally I'll find someone who is reluctant to tell a story or will say they can't remember one. But when they remember one, the rest come pouring out." We asked Elder to share some of his favorite "I knew it was over when…" stories with us. Read 'em and try not to weep (with laughter!):

I wasn't his fantasy girl
"I asked him what his sexual fantasy was, and he said 'two redheads.' I'm a brunette."
– Autumn

The lone swordsman
"I walked into his room and found swords hanging on his walls — legitimate samurai swords. When I asked him about it, he had a distant look on his face and said, 'I am warrior.' Not 'I am a warrior' — just, 'I am warrior.' Needless to say, I was frightened… and confused!"
– Maddy

Making a list, checking it twice
"She told me that I had passed her guy 'date-ability' list, missing only one out of 34 requirements. I thought she was kidding… until she showed me the actual, checked-off list."
– L.A. Boy

Sorry, wrong number
"My friends were going through the (gay) exotic massages and other sexual offers on Craigslist and laughing at how funny some of them sounded. They got to one that had a familiar number. It was my boyfriend's number."
– Jane

His wish wasn't my command
"He pretended to be the father of a terminally ill child to get a free vacation to Disney World out of the Make-A-Wish Foundation."
– Bobby

Conspiracy weary
"He thought that dinosaurs were a conspiracy theory."
– Noel

Don't crap where you eat
"I had only been married a couple of months and decided to prepare a nice meal for my husband. He was hungry, but needed to use the bathroom. So he took his plate into the bathroom and ate it while he was pooping."
– Michelle

Paging Maury Povich…
"She could no longer hide the growing fullness of her belly. I'd had a vasectomy three years earlier."
– James

A pregnant pause
"At a cookout, he shared with his boss that I was pregnant with twins and used that opportunity to ask for an
He thought that dinosaurs were a conspiracy theory.
increase in pay. I was not pregnant, did not look pregnant, and we had only been dating for a month at that time."
– Ma Shell

Sentimental to a fault
"He had two life-size mannequins in his living room — a man and a woman. They were dressed in the exact outfits his parents were married in (a wedding dress and military uniform). I thought maybe his parents had passed and he was remembering or honoring them. No — they are still alive!"
– Ricky

Weight loss to date: one jerk
"After pursuing me for a while, I finally agreed to date him. After a few dates and sex, he suggested I lose weight — and then we could decide where the relationship was going."
– Michele

Tears of a clown
"My boyfriend said, 'I think clown makeup is really sexy.' Shortly thereafter, he whispered in my ear, 'Seriously, babe, it's a major turn-on.' He wasn't joking."
– Chelsea

Once, OK… but twice?
"During sex, she called me by the wrong name. Worse, it was her roommate's name. Then she did it again! Also, her roommate was gay."
– John

A bad investment
"He told me that he would 'be a millionaire someday' and I should 'get in on the ground floor.' I laughed. He wasn't joking."
– Jen

Culture shocked
"He started making plans for a joint vacation (after only four days of knowing each other) to New York's Chinatown, because he wanted 'to learn more about my culture.' I'm Korean."
– AnemOne

"We were talking after sex one night, and she mentioned that the environmental movement was a secret government plot to keep us scared and obedient. I'm an energy efficiency consultant and activist who takes my impact on the Earth very seriously. I asked her if she knew what her statement meant to me. She responded with, 'Well, you can't blame me if you're wasting your life.'"
– Randy

Say a little prayer (for him)
"I was out of town because my grandmother was dying. As the priest was giving her the last rites, he told me over the phone that it was unfair to him that I had been spending so much time with my family and no time with him over the previous four days. He also wanted to know when the funeral was scheduled to be, so he'd know when I'd be coming back home. She was still alive."
– Mel

A most unsavory habit
"I noticed he was picking at his toes. A few minutes later, I realized that he was holding something between his thumb and index finger. Before I knew it, he had put the mysterious piece in his mouth and about a minute later I heard a crunch sound. 'Are you eating your toenail?' I asked. He looked embarrassed when he said, 'Yes, it's a nervous habit of mine.'"
– Bethany

(Un)friendly fire
"About five months into the relationship, I asked him why I hadn't met any of his friends. He said, 'I think you're hot, but I think they would say, She's not that attractive.""
– Angela

All anecdotes sourced from It Was Over When…Tales of Romantic Dead Ends by Robert K. Elder.

When DC-based journalist Chelsea Kaplan isn't helping you solve your relationship problems, she's making jewelry. Check it out at
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