My Ex-Boyfriend Will Not Die Alone

I Gave My Ex-Boyfriend a Book Titled How Not to Die Alone

Madison Sasser
4 min readJun 10, 2022
Photo by Khamkéo Vilaysing on Unsplash

Authors Note: This article was originally intended for the New York Times’ Modern Love column. It was not accepted, so I decided to publish it here. It is based on real events, but names were changed.

At the beginning of the pandemic, I started an internship at a small family law firm, which might explain why I gave my boyfriend a copy of the book How Not to Die Alone by Logan Ury to commemorate our first month together.

Surprisingly, Blake did not immediately break up with me or assume I was too kind to tell him we needed to go our separate ways, but he did ask for clarification. Blake is logical to a fault. It is one of the things I love most about him.

After flipping through the book, he asked, “Why are you giving me a book of dating techniques?”

“I told you it has a relationship agreement in the index, right? I thought we could fill it out together.”

Relationship agreements are part of collaborative life planning, a service we offered during my internship to clients who wanted to address the legal risks of their pending marriage and the real-life risks — like if he squeezes toothpaste from the top or bottom of the tube. We are not married, so I don’t know, but…

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Madison Sasser

I am a Gen Z determined to be everything wrong with the workforce. I blog about neurodiversity, employment trends, and my novel-writing journey.