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Margarita Confessionals: What to do with all that stuff from your ex

It’s Margarita Monday! Each week, we’ll be publishing a story about dating by Lauren Levine and/or Ali Washburn to go along with the latest episode of “The Margarita Confessionals,” a podcast for the jaded dater. You can find it on Soundcloud or iTunes.

There are a lot of layers involved when it comes to dealing with an ex in 2016. First there’s the actual face-to-face part. What do you do when you see them at an event? Is it acceptable to hide behind a display at Harris Teeter to avoid an awkward conversation? What about the fact that you’re still connected on every social media platform ever, including Venmo probably?

We covered that in this post. But then there’s the other stuff. You’ve still got a necklace they gave you for your birthday or a scrapbook they made you on Valentine’s Day. How do you deal with items that have sentimental value once the relationship is done?

There are a few solid options:

Set up an exchange program with your friend where you take the stuff she got from her ex and she takes yours

This way you don’t have to get rid of it for good, just in case you want to look back and reminisce/laugh/roll your eyes in 10 years, but you also don’t have to sense its presence in your house daily.

Put it in a place that’s out of your line of vision but still there

A box under your bed. Stored on a top shelf that’s inconvenient to reach. Buried under your pile of clean clothes that you still haven’t put away and probably won’t for a while. That way you don’t have to look at the stuff and be reminded of it daily, but it’s not gone forever.

Make your mom keep it

She already has all your trophies from middle school soccer, might as well add to the collection, right?

Buy yourself a new one to replace the old one

If you’re going to wear the necklace and think of your ex or feel uncomfortable if someone asks you where you got it, invest the money and get a new one. It doesn’t have to be expensive, it just has to be something you’ll feel good about wearing. Go with a friend to pick it out and make a day out of it. Wine should probably be involved.

Wear it and don’t care

If you really love the gift, remember that you also have the option to keep enjoying it. If it’s a bag, for example, you don’t walk around with a sign that says “MY EX GAVE ME THIS” hanging off the strap. If it doesn’t bother you to keep using it, no one else will know.

Just throw it out

Get all your friends together and have a bonfire where you all burn stuff from past relationships. Jewelry. Scrapbooks. Clothing. Shoes. Bags. All of it has to go. Then make s’mores and listen to a killer playlist. Britney. Beyoncé. You know how to do it.

Photo: Courtney Schramm

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