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Dear Dish-It: How Do I Break Up With My Boyfriend?

Dear Dish-It,

I have no idea how to break up with my bf without hurting him. Any help??

Secret Nickname

Dear SN,

Breaking up with a boyfriend or girlfriend is no fun – but it’s a fact of life for most of us. If you’re in a relationship with someone you’re no longer interested in (in that lovey dovey kinda way), it’s time be honest. Brutally honest. Here’s how to do the deed.

The first thing you need to do is make sure the two of you are alone – and in person. Never break up with anyone when there are other people around. Not even if it’s just your best friend or his best bud – you need to do this one-on-one, face-to-face and alone! Also, breaking up over the phone, by e-mail or through a text is never right. This is one of those things that you should do in person.

Now comes the hard part. Take a deep breath and try to relax yourself. Remember, you’re most likely about to hurt someone’s feelings and, no matter how they react, you need to remember you are doing what’s best for you (and, even if they can’t see it now, you are doing what’s best for them, too). No matter how they react, you keep your cool. Two wrongs don’t make a right, and two people screaming at each other isn’t going to fix anything, so the best thing to do is stay calm, no matter what.

Now’s the time to tell him or her that you feel like you need to stop seeing them or end the relationship. You don’t really need to go into your reasons at this point or try to defend yourself. You’ve said the most important part. Now it’s time to let it sink in and see what the reaction is.

If your (now) ex tries to convince you to give him or her another chance, listen to what they have to say. Maybe there’s a good point in there somewhere? If not, and you’re still sure about breaking up, say you don’t think it’s going to work and you’re really, really sorry. Tell them you’ve already given it a lot of thought and you don’t think you’re going to change your mind. But don’t be mean!

Make sure that, before the conversation ends, you tell your ex where you see the relationship going at this point. That doesn’t mean giving promises of getting back together in the future – it means you need to let him or her know whether or not you’re willing to be friends, whether or not you still want to talk on the phone, whether or not you’ll still say hi when you see them at school, etc.

A very important part of breaking up with someone is trying to put yourself in their shoes. How would you feel if someone you didn’t want to break up with was telling you they wanted to let you go? This doesn’t mean you have to feel sorry for them – it just means you need to deliver the bad news in the best way possible, with the most respect you can give. Think about how you’d like and not like someone to break up with you, and follow the same advice when it’s you doing the breaking up with someone else.

And one last thing: once you know it’s better to end things with your girlfriend or boyfriend, don’t drag it out for very long. If the relationship is over in your mind and heart and it’s pointless to go on, be honest and let the other person know as soon as possible. It may hurt their feelings, but looking back they’ll appreciate you being honest and truthful with them as soon as your feelings changed.

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10 Comments

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  • The "Let's be friends" line.
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Dear Dish-It In The Forums

drowning
drowning posted in Friends:
"NS12" wrote: I meet this guy at a festival and we have been talking for the whole week and my mum has noticed I keep texting someone and I know I need to tell her but I don t know how I am going to tell her, I doubt she ll get angry or anything but he lives about 4/5 hours away from me. I know I need to tell her as I don t like keeping secrets from her. I know this was a bit ago, but I truly hope that you were able to be open with your mother. If you feel as if they won't get mad at you, then chances are that your guardian will not. Honesty is the best policy, and if you feel guilt keeping a secret, then it is one you probably shouldn't be keeping.
reply about 12 hours
drowning
I agree with @rainbowpoptart. You really shouldn't worry about relationships that much given your age. I promise, they're better things to worry about than boys and more secure romances occur later on in life anyways. But, given the situation, you shouldn't worry about either. The boy is unfaithful and so is your friend. If your best friend really valued your friendship, she would not have put it in a position that could end it. Don't waste your time on those who will not put you first just as you do for them; better people will come into your life and they are the ones who you should really worry about.
reply about 12 hours
rainbowpoptart
There's a Dear Dish-It section for questions like this. (: But to answer it anyway: BREAK UP WITH HIM! Stop being friends with who he cheated on you with. Move on and find someone better for you. Don't let it ruin your life. Neither of them are worth your time, there are much better people out there. Because you're only 10, though, I would definitely advise not focusing too much on any more romantic relationships. Work on preparing for your future; boyfriends can wait a while.
reply 1 day
Pinklilylane
So my Bf cheated on me for my bff. Know they won't even talk to me. I don't know what to do. Can you tell me what to do?
reply 2 days
PitbullLover777
You should definitely tell your mom - gently, and slowly - be honest - and everything will be ok
reply 4 days