From the very start of their relationship, Jax Taylor and Brittany Cartwright faced some pretty severe challenges, many of them resulting from what Taylor describes as his "Peter Pan complex."
Jax will soon be 39 years old, but the current season of Vanderpump Rules features some of his most batsh-t behavior yet, and Brittany has tolerated all of it ... only to get unceremoniously kicked to the curb on last night's episode.
To understand how bizarre and thoroughly unexpected this move was, we need to go back and re-examine how bonkers Taylor's behavior has been throughout this season.
Things started off with a bang - literally - when Jax cheated on Brittany with Faith Stowers.
From there, the situation quickly got cranked up to 11 when it was revealed that Stowers might be pregnant with Taylor's baby.
(That rumor was quickly revealed to be some nonsense that Faith cooked up in order to expand her role on the show. Shady stuff, to be sure, but it's kind of behavior we've come to expect from the SUR staff.)
With the help of some new-age mumbo-jumbo, Jax calmed down for a few weeks ... that is until last week's episode when he had a full-blown meltdown at SUR, even going so far as to flip Lisa Vanderpump the bird.
We've seen Jax lose control under the influence of one too many Pump-tinis in the past, but this was a whole new level.
Needless to say, many suspected that he'd traded in his calming stone for a different kind of rock.
After all that, we guess it's not surprising that last night's episode saw the return of Contrite Jax, a character who's getting more and more pathetic as he approaches 40.
We expected the usual hollow apologies and pseudo-self-reflection, but we didn't expect him to dump the only person willing to put up with his insanity:
"I'm not happy with myself. I don't like who I am and it's not because of you. Look at all the s--t I've caused this summer."
Yes, it was a rare moment of self-awareness from Jax. Guess all that Reiki therapy is finally paying off!
Just kidding, it was all just his way of kicking off a classic "it's not you; it's me" speech.
"You deserve to be happy. You deserve to get married. You deserve to have kids. You deserve to have someone treat you like the princess that you are," Jax said, sounding very much like he was auditioning for a sequel to The Notebook.
"I am just not that person. I am not good in relationships. You deserve a lot better than me. I just don't think we can be together anymore."
Viewers were momentarily hopeful that Brittany would finally free herself of what seems to be an absurdly unhealthy relationship:
"F—k you, I am f—king leaving ‘Cause I don't want to be with you," she shouted at one point.
"This is exactly what you wanted to do. You said it a long time ago, that you wanted to break up with me, so good job."
Yes, it did seem like Jax was merely capitalizing on the drama of recent weeks and using it as an excuse to end a relationship that he's wanted to get out of several months.
But the episode was filmed several months ago, and remarkably, it seems Jax and Brittany are still going strong and bracing themselves for another summer of Patron-fueled mayhem.
In fact, just this morning, Jax was tweeting not only about his love for Brittany, but the future he envisions for the children they'll have together.
"Our daughter is going to be in pageants I know it.. I am in trouble. who am I kidding I am gonna be the biggest pageant dad ever!" he wrote.
Indeed, Brittany confirmed in a recent interview that she and Jax are still an item after more than two years of constant drama:
"He's so much better," she said. "I feel like we're so much better than we've been in a long time."
As verification that the couple is gearing up to for another summer of WeHo insanity, she wrote on Instagram, "New Summer, New Us."
We cringe to imagine it ... and we can't wait to see what happens.
Watch Vanderpump Rules online to get caught up on one of the show's most insane seasons to date.