It’s never easy to sit your boyfriend down and tell him that you don’t want to go home with him. Even when that means staying in the Underworld. Even when he specifically journeyed to the Underworld to save you. Listen, we’ve all been there. Relationships aren’t all grapes, private lyre performances, and lounging like statues in an acropolis. Communication is key to a good relationship: you should be able to tell your partner how you feel, and sometimes what you feel is that now that you’ve died and gone to the Underworld, you don’t actually want to leave, even though he defied metaphysics to come to find you. It’s not an easy conversation, but just follow my steps below, and you’ll be sipping wine contentedly beneath the natural world in no time.

First of all, make sure to prepare yourself for the conversation. I’m talking about self care! Take a few deep cleansing breaths. Eat another pomegranate. Listen to some soothing music—anything but the goddamn lyre again. When you’re ready, start with something nice, like “I appreciate you coming all this way to find me.” Or, “You’re so talented at the lyre.”

Break the news as calmly as you can. If you get dramatic or burst into tears, he probably will too, and then you’ll have to pretend it’s not happening to protect his fragile male ego. Assure him it has little, if anything, to do with his sexual performance. Unless you know, it does. He’s gotta find out some time.

Don’t be surprised if your partner is reluctant to hear your concerns or is defensive at first. Think about it from his perspective: you were literally about to get married before that serpent bit you. Nevermind that you were sneaking off to hang with the naiads to get just the slightest taste of freedom before becoming Mrs. Orpheus the Famous Musician forever. It makes sense that he’s puzzled by your decision, especially if he hasn’t paid attention to the gender dynamics present in your society, like, ever.

Also, try not to let the opinions of others get in your way. It doesn’t matter if your boyfriend has his face painted on a million urns or his abs in more than one full-sized sculpture, or his surprisingly catchy songs on the lips of every naiad from here to the Parthenon. If the Underworld is where you want to be, none of that matters. Even if the denizens of the Underworld themselves take a break from being tortured by their vultures and rocks and thirst, don’t let it get to you.

At this point, it would help to know, even just for yourself, why you’re committed to your new life. Turns out no one works a grill like Hades—maybe if your boyfriend tasted some grilled eagle with pineapple sauce, he’d understand. Plus, you’ve already promised Persephone you’re best friends for life, and you’re pretty swamped now, between hanging out with your new pals, judging the newly damned from afar, and scratching Cerberus under all three of his chins.

And of course, if this conversation doesn’t go well, you can always tell him that you’ve changed your mind, that Hades will let you go, and you’ll be right behind him—as long as he doesn’t look back.


And now a quick joke...

I’ve never had a Pap smear. The closest I want to come to getting one is going to the doctor, and having him pull out some knives, cream cheese, and bagels—a pap schmear. Sounds so much better.