I visited the Museum of Broken Relationships in Zagreb, Croatia (actually the main reason I even went to Zagreb) and it was unbelievably good. Good because humans and relationships are such beautiful and tragic messes, and illuminating the untidiness of life is important and educational.
I do disagree with the title of “broken” however. Most relationships are not quite broken when a society-approved label such as “girlfriend” or “boyfriend” ends. Sure, break-downs in communication, understanding, and perhaps even love can occur in moments or over months and years, but this does not necessarily mean the relationship is broken. Instead, the relationship has changed in a fundamental way- sometimes for the better, sometimes for the worse, sometimes for the tragic. The reason we apply the word broken is because our current society does not think it has the capacity to accept relationships that do not begin and end in a severe, easy to understand manner.
Human relationships no matter what or who they encompass are fluid entities embedded within ourselves, not something we can take out and hold far away from the way we move throughout the world. For me, the first step is acknowledging the importance of the bonds we form with those that have places in our lives no matter the size of the bonds or places, and no matter how the bonds have altered over time. Where I go from here is more difficult and ambiguous- how can I possibly expect a societal shift towards the way we perceive relationships when I can’t break down the weird barriers and harsh endings that are a part of my own life?
Not sure but I’ll work on it, here are some pictures from near my host’s home in Zagreb!