This museum is where all the broken hearts go

Photo: Screengrab from Instagram/ brokenshipsla

Two silicon breast implants sit in an encased pedestal in a Los Angeles museum.

Without masquerading behind the flesh, these implants are a stark reminder of one woman's failed relationship.

And more importantly, her journey to reclaim her own body.

The anonymous woman wrote that the implants were her ex-boyfriend's idea. He constantly reminded her that her natural breasts were not big enough. Feeling inadequate, she went for an implant surgery, which didn't quite agree with her body.

After two operations in five years to rectify the sliding implants, she decided to remove them - a symbolic move which allowed her to "close the door on any leftover influences that ex had on [her] life."

These implants are one of the many donated exhibits in the Museum of Broken Relationships in Los Angeles.

It's a place where broken hearts can send objects or mementos to if they do not wish to dispose of them.

The musem's concept was first borne in Croatia in 2010 when an artist ex-couple wanted to find a way to manage the objects they shared during happier times.

American John B. Quinn was so inspired by the exhibition that he founded one right in the heart of Los Angeles.

There is a whole spectrum of broken relationships featured in the museum and it can be anything from a failed one with a best friend to one with the church.

One exhibit was a poignant reminder of how the permanence of a loved one's death often leaves us locked in the past.

Another featured a wedding gown stuffed unceremoniously into a large glass jar with the caption: '"After seven years together, five of them married, my husband told me that he felt stuck and that he "probably" didn't love me anymore."

Whether single or attached, visitors from all walks of life remain a steady stream.

Director Alexis Hyde told UpWorthy that the museum has a constant flow of visitors who want to feel connected to stories that are similar to their own.

As for those who were brave enough to let go of their donated items, she said: "There's good old fashioned closure, of course. And it's also a type of catharsis, of letting go of repressed feelings that may still be hurting you."

The museum still accepts donated items, and all exhibits are displayed anonymously.

debwong@sph.com.sg

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