Breaking Up Is Hard To Do

I broke up with my hairstylist this morning.

Well, technically, we really just agreed to see other people. Our long-distance relationship just wasn’t working out for me anymore.

We were pretty serious: over seven years together, exclusive. I never saw anyone else — although I will admit I trimmed my own bangs from time to time over the years.

My first experience with Kristie was when she rescued me from a grown-out discount haircut. She earned my trust with that first haircut, after I’d lost faith in hairstylists with that K.D. Lang haircut debacle.

Once I had my son in late 2011, though, evening haircuts were no longer an option, so that meant going in before work and being her first client of the day — and she would even come in a half hour early, just for me. It was still just a ten-minute drive from my house, though. Not that big of a deal, apart from coming to work late.

Then we moved to a new house in early 2013, and my ten-minute drive to the salon became fifteen on a good day. Then the salon moved to a new location last year, in an outdoor mall south of town, and my 15-minute drive on surface streets became a 15-minute drive on the expressway plus a half hour of hanging out in the parking lot (or mall-walking), since the mall forbade them from opening before 9am (and they had to negotiate for even that early).

Meanwhile, this salon has another location only a five-minute drive down the street from my house.

I finally decided that I’d take the plunge today. I’d been meaning to break it to her the past couple of times, but I kept chickening out and just scheduling another appointment with her. As we were finishing up the last touches on my hair this morning, I finally told her I was thinking about trying out the other location, being that it’s only five minutes from my house.

She took it relatively well, and gave me three referrals at their other location, so I can have some options and see who I like the best. I gave her a 40% tip and promised to come back every now and then.

It’s seriously like breaking off a long-term romantic relationship. It’s a long-term interpersonal relationship based on trust and confidence. It feels weird to know that the next time I get my hair cut, it will be done by a complete stranger again.

But it’s good to know that, unlike most romantic breakups, Kristie will always be happy to see me again.

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