Dear John letters

Monday, August 8, 2016

There is a famous quote that says, "Absence makes the heart grow fonder," which means that separation intensifies love. Unfortunately this isn’t true for everyone because of the Dear John letter. 

A Dear John letter is a letter (or maybe an email nowadays) from a woman to a man (or vice versa), breaking off (terminating) a romantic relationship. Dear John letters are typically sent to servicemen or soldiers overseas by a wife or girlfriend, usually because they have found someone else. Rather cruel, isn’t it?

A romantic letter might contain affectionate language, such as Dearest John, Darling, or Dear Johnny, but if a serviceman received a letter beginning with an abrupt Dear John, the receiver would instantly know its purpose. Bad news.

Why John? It’s not sure how the name John was used. It was a popular name during World War ll (when Dear John letters started becoming a fact of life). Another reason may be that John is a name commonly used  when referring to any unidentified man (like John Doe).

These days you don't have to be in the service to receive a Dear John letter. Perhaps nowadays people end relationships with texts, which are just as heartless. Do you do something similar in your country to end a personal relationship? I hope you practice something more compassionate than sending a Dear John (or Dear Jane) letter.

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