Thelma: So I saw you at the movie theater with Brian. Does your boyfriend know about this?

Julia: Oh, we broke up last week.

Thelma: Oh, really? Well, Brian is a better guy, anyway.

When two people who are dating stop being a couple, it is said that they break up. Other things can break up (such as ice that is melting or an airplane that falls apart while flying) but they are whole objects that break into many pieces, not two whole objects that were stuck together but now come apart (like the couple that stopped dating).




付き合っている二人がカップルじゃなくなるときは「break up」(別れる)と言います。他に「break up」するものがあります(溶けかけている氷や空中でばらばらになる飛行機など)。ですが、これらはひとつの物がばらばらになって破片がたくさんできます。カップルの例で言えば、こちらは二つのくっついたものが離れるイメージです。