Given the peculiar state of modern romance, it's reasonably likely that you met your soon-to-be-ex online. Isn't it fitting, then, that the relationship should end where it began? Granted, e-mail is a cold-blooded form of communication. In the short history of the internet, the carelessly or callously worded e-mail has probably launched more feuds than three centuries of hillbilly moonshine. But before dismissing the digital Dear John/Dear Jane missive, consider its advantages. Ending a relationship is an inherently messy act. Sometimes, it is dangerous. Doesn't it make sense to undertake the task in a controlled setting? And what is more controlled than the internet? In cyberspace, no one can hear you scream. More importantly, in cyberspace no one can throw a hard, heavy object in the direction of your head. Breaking up via e-mail also reduces the likelihood that in a fog of emotional upheaval you'll wind up back in your ex's arms. Sure, if you really care about the other person (or if you are a decency fetishist), you may need to do your dumping in person. Fine. Go to the lakes. Hold hands. Weep. Watch the sun set. The rest of us will stay at home, click the mouse, and get on with our lives.


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