When beginning a relationship, both parties must communicate before anything is considered official; a relationship consists of communication with the significant other. So, even though a couple will converse about ending things, that does not mean that there is an official endpoint. When it comes to breakups, that may mean the end of the relationship; though, it can also mean a temporary agreement that pauses the relationship. However, that is for the couple to decide, not those surrounding them.

If and when a couple chooses to break up, I believe it is appropriate to include all months before their initial separation. Regardless of how much each partner has grown emotionally, physically and mentally, they still choose to be with the same person. Although they may change, their future with that person remains the same. The experiences and interactions they once had cannot just vanish within thin air.

Not only is it up to the couple on what time frame they establish, but it also depends on the situation. Say a relationship lasts for six months, takes a one-month break and has now been together for another month: I think it would be fair to consider their relationship seven months in total. 

Some may view it differently, but I think couples follow this ideal because it is the same dynamic, same person, same life; they do not want to erase such a substantial history of their life, including that person. If Jake and I were to take a break and we got back together, I would count our pre-breakup time because we were still together for a significant time in my life. 

Relationships are not always solid; things can break as easily as a sheet of glass. A single romance is not pinpoint perfect, and neither are we, which is why breaks may be worthwhile. It does not have to concern the relationship either: outside issues, difficulty to trust and disagreements are just a handful in the range of reasons. A universal thought surrounding breaks seems to be that its usage is only for selfish reasons; sometimes dating can become an overbear of codependency, and separating for a period can equate to healthiness.

Give or take, high school relationships do not often have the same magnitude or importance as adult relationships, but missing someone incredulously is sometimes enough to bring the two back together.