They might be fictional relationships but that doesn’t make these TV breakups any easier. This list is dedicated to all of the couples who’s breakups left us heartbroken along with them. Whether it was their own decision to end things or if they were forced apart by fate the end of these relationships stung. Some of these couples did get back together and others definitely weren’t end game but their breakups are ones we can’t get over, regardless of how permanent or temporary they may have been.
1. Arizona Robbins & Callie Torres Grey’s Anatomy
This is a couple that definitely went through the ringer, several times. After breaking up for the first time when Arizona decided to go to Africa without Callie we all definitely thought they were endgame. That was until Arizona experienced a horrific plane crash, leaving her in a deep depression that led to her cheating. No one would have guessed that their divorce would’ve ended in a messy custody battle making some audience members turn on the newly bitter Arizona. When she left the show there was possible hope that she was going to try to get Callie back but I think this is one of the TV breakups that should stay broken up.
2. Buffy Summers & Angel Buffy the Vampire Slayer
A slayer in love with a vampire, kind of poetic isn’t it? These two were destined for heartbreak from the beginning but that didn’t stop the teen monster hunter from falling in love with the vampire with a soul. Although they were on and off for a while their actual breakup before prom is what’s truly heartbreaking. Watching Buffy sob to Willow about how it’s hard to breath is something any teen girl can relate to after their first real breakup.
3. Jackie Burkhart & Steven Hyde That 70’s Show
Audiences were screaming at their screen when they watched Hyde cheat on Jackie. After misunderstanding Jackie’s comforting of Kelso as her cheating Hyde was bitter and thought that his only option was to hurt her as well. Nothing was sadder than realizing that he was wrong but it was too late, he lost her. This otherwise funny show proved to give us one of the saddest TV breakups.
4. Cristina Yang & Preston Burke Grey’s Anatomy
Cristina and Burke definitely weren’t meant to be together, he wanted her to become something she wasn’t and she lost herself in him. That still didn’t cushion the blow when he chose to leave her at the alter. Meredith having to cut Cristina out of her wedding dress when she realized that yes she was free to live her life but at what cost is one of the saddest moments on the show.
5. Lily Aldrin and Marshall Eriksen HIMYM
We all know that Lily and Marshall ended up together but at the end of season one the audience was left wondering if they actually would be end game. Lily decides to pursue her art in California despite Marshall’s protests. It was a shock to everyone when Marshall told Lily he wasn’t willing to wait for her and instead would rather just break up.
6. Blaine Anderson & Kurt Hummel Glee
It could be argued that Glee took a turn for the worst after season 3 and never really recovered. One episode in particular that completely derailed relationships was the “Breakup” episode in season 4. It’s revealed that Blaine cheated on a New York-living Kurt. Cheating is hard enough but the reveal of his infidelity is told through Blaine’s tearful piano-version of “Teenage Dream”. The same song that played when the pair first met. We’re not crying you are.
7. Julia Braverman & Joel Graham Parenthood
This breakup is one that many children have witnessed and many couples fear. This is one of the more real TV breakups. After quitting her job and forcing Joel to go back to work Julia becomes lost in her new life as a stay-at-home mom. Unlike the other moms at her children’s school she begins to resent that she isn’t working and finds solace in a fellow parent. It is gut-wrenching watching Joel go from wanting to be with her to insisting on a divorce.
8. Monica Gellar & Richard Burke Friends
When you think of breakups on Friends you may immediately think of the Ross and Rachel but this breakup is actually much sadder. Monica and Richard genuinely love each other but their age difference becomes something they can’t ignore. He’s lived a long life with children and eventual grandchildren whereas Monica was just starting out. They’re the definition of a couple that met at the wrong place and wrong time. Their relationship shows that sometimes love isn’t enough and realizing that you do still love the person but have to be apart is something many hope to never go through.
9. Princess Carolyn & Ralph Stilton BoJack Horseman
BoJack Horseman definitely doesn’t shy away from serious topics. One story arch in particular that many viewers will relate to is Princess Carolyn’s miscarriage. After realizing she lost the baby Princess Carolyn resorts back to her typical way of coping, drinking. Ralph Stilton is at a loss and unable to know how to truly be there for her, leading to their eventual breakup. This is something too many couples can relate to all too well.
10. Michael Scott & Holly Flax The Office
Although they do end up together, which does cause Michael to leave, watching Holly cry on the drive down to her new job is heartbreaking. They’re a couple that are perfect for each other but are separated from circumstances. Despite ending up together they could’ve easily become a cautionary tale of the ones that got away of TV breakups.