Breakups are super hard, even when you are breaking up with someone you can’t stand to be with one more second. However, there is nothing more devastating than severing ties with someone you still love, be it a BFF boyfriend or a crazy ‘I-love-you-but-I-am-intensely-unhappy-in-this-relationship-most-of-the-time’ bae.
There’s no easy way to say this — it sucks big time. It is probably one of the toughest things you have to do in life and is difficult and emotional. While breaking up with someone you still love is not easy, it does not mean that there aren’t things you can and should do to make the process easier for both of you. The secret is to be honest and respect the other person’s feelings. Here are a few steps you should follow to break up in a healthy way and heal faster from it.
How To Break Up With Someone
1. Think Before Taking Your Decision
Are you sure that you want to break up? Is this the best step to take? If you break up and then want to get back together immediately, your partner may no longer want to be in the relationship. They may start thinking that you were right in calling things off. Even if you both do decide to get back together, who can say that your feelings will remain the same? The damage that will be caused cannot be undone. That is why you need to give yourself some time to think about why you are considering breaking up.
Seek advice from friends and family members you trust. Remember, a breakup is not a magic pill for solving relationship issues. In fact, all it may take is having an honest conversation with your partner. Think about it – do the things you will achieve via this breakup outweigh the things you are going to lose? If yes, maybe a breakup is the right way to go.
Also, if you have identified the problems in the relationship, it is important that you both give each other a chance to work through them before breaking up. If you are sure about your decision, it’s your job to tell your bae about your grievances and concerns before making the final decision. It will initially hurt your partner, but at least they will get a chance to fix the problems that you are concerned about. Also, if you do decide to break up later on, they won’t be taken by surprise.
2. Decide What You Can’t Compromise On, And Stick To Your Decision
It’s hard to take a decision when you can’t pinpoint what is wrong in your relationship or how it affects the life you want to live. It is important to know what you want out of life, how you treat others and yourself, and how you expect others to treat you. Think of what advice you would give a buddy who is in the same situation as you.
If one partner wants kids while the other doesn’t, it is very hard to find a middle ground. Even where you want to live permanently can be a valid enough reason not to budge. You have to be aware of what it is and be confident in living your truth and life. We often forget that we should give ourselves more love and care or at least just as much when we make life decisions.
3. First, Fall Out Of Love In Your Head
It is an extremely difficult decision to make. If you keep on obsessing over the times you were happy, you will not be able to break up with your boyfriend. But if you are able to recognize the good times as well as the bad times, you will have a clear idea of whether you need to break up or not. Something as layered and complex as a relationship can be very hard to define with a single word or feeling, especially when you are trying to summarize all the years of being together. That’s why you need to zoom in.
Reflect on the past and the times you have felt uneasy, uncertain, scared, or betrayed. Focus on the times some part inside you told you something is wrong. Consider why you felt what you felt. If you are sure that it is time to break up, do not focus on the happy moments you have had together. Build up your mental strength and banish the thoughts from your head, or you will go crazy. Focus on the reasons for breaking up with your partner. Once you have made the decision, simply rip off the band-aid – do it and don’t ever look back.
4. Be Ready To Let Go Completely, At Least For A While
If you are 100% sure you want to end things between the two of you, be prepared to have a no-contact policy ready. Do not text them about something funny that happened at work or send them memes. Take some time apart to get a healthy perspective on the breakup and learn from it.
However, if you work together, this may not be an option for you. Maybe you both are BFFs, and the breakup would be a painless transition to being just friends. But don’t just reach out because you are bored or don’t have anybody else to share the news with. Give each other time to heal.
5. Plan What To Do After The Breakup
What are you going to do after the breakup goes through? If you both are living together, you have to decide on who gets to stay and who gets which item. Find out if you have enough money to move out and get a place of your own or pay rent. You need to have supportive people around you who will keep you stable emotionally during this tumultuous transition. Do you have friends or relatives who will take you in for a while if you have to leave but can’t get a place of your own yet?
If you don’t live in, break the news at their house or a public place so that you can leave when you need to. However, if your partner has the tendency to become physically and emotionally abusive, it is best to choose a public place and have a friend nearby. If you feel you could really be in danger, better do it over the phone and change your number and location immediately.
6. Forgive Yourself If You Can’t Make The Cleanest Break
Love is messy, but breakups are messier. Ideally, you should break up in private and give yourselves plenty of time to voice your feelings. If you still love them and they mean a lot to you, you might have a few false breakups – i.e., you will separate and keep getting back together for a while.
You need to forgive yourself for sending the occasional texts – everyone has done it sometime in their life, especially when drunk. Clean breaks are quite rare, so some emotional cycling back and forth is very normal. However, even though you can allow yourself some slip-ups, do your best to stick to your decision.
7. Select The Right Time And Place
If you want to have a smooth break, you need to do it at the right time and place. Not doing it respectfully and properly could make your partner not even want to be friends with you anymore. Unless you both are in a long-distance relationship, do not break up with them over the phone. Unless they could get abusive, don’t break up it in a public place.
It is not easy to be emotionally honest when people are trying to hear what is going on. Avoid breaking up in the middle of an argument because you both may say or do things you will regret. Also, if your partner is in the middle of a health, work, family, or personal crisis, wait for it to be over before you spring this on them.
8. Talk To Your Partner First
Don’t blurt the topic out of nowhere. Send them a message that you want to talk about something serious. It would be much better if you say it directly. You need to do this at least several hours before you break up with your partner. Giving a heads up will let your partner know that something is up.
Help them get emotionally prepared for what they are about to hear. Before calling it quits, you need to ask yourself two questions: ‘Is this relationship irreconcilable?’ and ‘Have you both done all that you can?’ You can also seek counseling if you want to work on this. All serious relationships have rough patches. So, it could just be a rough patch, and you both may eventually get out of it.
9. Don’t Deal With It By Yourself
Breaking up with someone you love can cause a lot of stress, which can lead to drastic changes in your appetite, sleep, and mood. You may feel lonely and a lack of connection. You need to connect with people who love and care for you.
Sure, if you need some space to heal, get it. But retreating from everybody can make you feel even worse. Talk to friends and family – this will not only help you feel more loved and less lonely, but it can also help you learn more from the breakup.
10. Be Kind And Emphatic
It is no doubt tough for you to say, but it is also very tough for them to hear. You should be aware that they will be very shocked and hurt. After all, your lives are about to change in one instant. You need to keep in mind that you will probably be emotional as well. It is not going to be an easy talk. But you are not simply breaking up without a cause, so don’t doubt yourself just because emotions are building up.
To have a more compassionate and kind breakup, tell them that you did not regret the time you spent together. Convey future wishes to your partner and be very nice and genuine. Explain to the person why you want a breakup. Emphasize the good things you both gained from this relationship. Avoid leaving on a sour note or blaming them for the breakup. Convince them that the breakup is good for both of you. Stay positive and empathetic.
11. Make Your Intentions Clear
Don’t try to sugar coat things related to the breakup. Don’t beat around the bush – deliver a direct and clear message. Avoid any miscommunication. Ensure that you have clearly communicated your intentions. Say what is on your mind and be honest. If you intend to hurt the person, the breakup will get all messy.
If your partner has questions, answer them as long as you are not uncomfortable. Keep in mind that you are not breaking up for their good – you are doing it for yours.
12. Speak In A Respectful And Honest Manner
The moment is here. By now, you should know what you want to say. Blurting out the first few sentences can be very anxiety-filled. Take a deep, long breath and wait until you are ready to speak. Look into your partner’s eyes as you bare your heart out. Be assertive. Use more ‘I’ than ‘you’.
Simply concentrating on their mistakes can make them feel worse. It can also backfire if they start to defend themselves or promise to change for the better to prolong the relationship. If you have decided to end it, do NOT let your partner negotiate with you.
13. Solve Existing Issues Between You Both
You should be open about any hurt they have caused you. Encourage your partner to be honest as well. All the issues that have been swept under the rug should be talked about and sorted once and for all. Cry if you need to; it is good for your emotional health.
Let go of emotional baggage – this will help you both. Explain your side and point of view. This will not only allow you both to part on good terms but also provide closure.
14. Don’t Blame Them
Don’t try to play the blame game. You can change your mind if you want to and make different decisions than the ones you made in the past. Accept responsibility and don’t overcompensate for your reasoning. Explain how difficult the situation is for everyone involved.
Yes, you will hurt the other person, but the hurt is part of the healing process. Don’t try to control their behavior or reaction – they are entitled to it. If you are not able to accept them for who they are, don’t blame them for that.
15. Ask If You Both Can Still Be Friends
It is possible to be friends with an ex-lover. What is important is both of the parties should be aware that what is done is done, and there are boundaries now that shouldn’t ever be crossed again. If they want to stay friends, tell them that you need some time away for now. Take the time you need to heal and learn to adjust to a life without one another.
Keeping in contact after a breakup only leads to confusion – are you just being friendly or do you still care about them? If they do not want to be friends with you, that is perfectly fine as well. Remove them from your social network sites and delete their contact number.
16. Focus On The Future
It may be difficult to understand how breaking up is the best thing to do, but if you discuss it and focus on how you both can benefit from it, it may be easier for you to move on. If you naturally get back together later, that is awesome, but don’t force it. Sometimes, you may need a little space and time to forget why you broke up in the first place. This is true whether you both are high-school sweethearts or BFFs turned lovers.
Often, people grow apart because they are too young. But as you both get older, you come to your senses and can rationalize like an adult about what happened between you. That’s why it is important to not focus on the past. It is done with, and there is no need to cry about what could have been done differently.
17. Get Rid Of Things That Remind You Of Him
Avoid overthinking and putting yourself through emotional trauma. Get rid of the things that remind you of your ex. Throw the love letters away or ask a friend to store them for you. Delete any romantic posts and photos on Facebook or Instagram.
18. Don’t Blame Yourself For Breaking Up
Yes, you were the one to decide to break up, but why is that a bad thing? Feeling pain and loss is completely normal. But it isn’t okay to feel guilty even months after the breakup. Be proud that you were adult enough to take it upon yourself to move on.
19. Enjoy Your Alone Time
Don’t rush into other relationships. You are single and ready to mingle. However, this doesn’t mean you should. It is up to you to decide how much time you need to heal before you take a chance at love again. While you can get it on with a rebound, it is better that you don’t. This will in no way help you to move on.
Prioritize yourself. Go out with your friends to have fun, but reject any romantic advances. Focus on yourself for now. Spend quality time with your family and friends. Read that book you have been meaning to or learn a new language. Try learning to play a new instrument. Stay busy and be happy.
20. Fill Your Life With Other Things You Love
Keep busy, even if it inherently makes you want to crawl back into bed. Emotion-focused coping doesn’t get rid of the issue, but it does distract you briefly from stress. Watching your favorite movie, indulging in comfort foods, going for a run, or doing a fun activity can help you get back on track. It will keep you feeling happier and emotionally balanced, and you can focus on making bigger changes.
In the beginning, every relationship is exciting. You can’t wait to see your bae, and it feels great to know that they feel the same way about you. However, things start to change as couples start getting to know each other better. Some settle into a close, comfortable relationship, while others drift apart.
People break up due to many reasons – and growing apart is one of them. Maybe you both argue too much or don’t want the same things in life. Whatever the reason may be, ensure that the steps you take to end the relationship don’t break the soul of the other person. Do it with love and positivity, and who knows, one day this will be something you will look back upon with love and fondness. All the best!
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