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Usage of "go separate ways" Options
kevins
Posted: Saturday, May 16, 2015 5:41:06 AM
Rank: Newbie

Joined: 7/26/2014
Posts: 38
Neurons: 198
I searched the internet and found "go separate ways"="end the relationship".
However, I am afraid this phrase implies some negative reason of ending the relationship, such as the broke-up of couples (who hate each other). When I have to say goodbye to my good friend and we may never able to see each other again, can I say the following to my friend:
Friends go separate ways, but friendship never decays
TheParser
Posted: Saturday, May 16, 2015 7:34:36 AM
Rank: Advanced Member

Joined: 9/21/2012
Posts: 4,668
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***** NOT A TEACHER *****


Hello, Kevins:

My dictionary agrees with you. It does not necessarily have a negative connotation.

Quite often, after secondary school or university graduation, friends do go their separate ways. When they leave, they also promise to keep in touch. But as the saying goes, "Out of sight, out of mind."

*****

As far as a negative example is concerned, here's a true one:

There is a member at this website whom I once considered to be a model member: always very polite and even humble. Recently, he has changed. So now we are going our separate ways (for example, I no longer respond to him).
Drag0nspeaker
Posted: Saturday, May 16, 2015 7:57:23 AM

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Location: Livingston, Scotland, United Kingdom
Hello kevins!

I agree with The Parser.

His (basically American) ideas match my (basically British) ones.

In British English, when a couple (married or in a partnership) end the relationship without divorce, they are said to 'be separated'.

The phrase "They went their separate ways" can have a negative connotation, but does not have to be negative.

"After the party, they all went their separate ways, promising to meet again soon."
kevins
Posted: Saturday, May 16, 2015 8:14:31 AM
Rank: Newbie

Joined: 7/26/2014
Posts: 38
Neurons: 198
Thank you, TheParser and Drag0nspeaker. Your answers help me get out of the worry of misuse.
NKM
Posted: Saturday, May 16, 2015 7:27:43 PM

Rank: Advanced Member

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Drag0nspeaker wrote:

In British English, when a couple (married or in a partnership) end the relationship without divorce, they are said to 'be separated'.


Exactly so in American English as well.

belll
Posted: Saturday, May 16, 2015 8:10:40 PM

Rank: Member

Joined: 4/16/2015
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Go separate ways seems more amicable.

But yeah" friends go separate ways but friendship never decays" sounds pretty good to me. After all one cannot be tied down because of friendship. Whistle
Romany
Posted: Sunday, May 17, 2015 4:50:38 AM
Rank: Advanced Member

Joined: 6/14/2009
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Location: Brighton, England, United Kingdom
Bell -

"After all, one can't be tied down because of friendship".

Oh yes one can! In fact the reason a lot of people never move on or travel is because they don't want to leave their friends!
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