7 Things Not To Do
1. Don’t break up in public. You’ll need to offer your partner the opportunity to experience an honest emotional reaction, and privacy will help with that. Most likely, you’ll also be questioned about your reasons for breaking up, and it will be easier for your partner to ask these questions if the event occurs in a safe and at least semi-private location.
2. Don’t break up in your own home; if possible, do so in the home of your partner. When the conversation is over, you’ll want to be the one to pick up and leave, and it will be easier for your partner not to have to travel home while experiencing such raw feelings.
3. Don’t offer false hope. If you’re certain you need to break up, it’s better not to leave the relationship open-ended.
4. Don’t try to downshift the romance to friendship. It may feel like a way to cushion the blow, but it actually causes uncertainty and runs the risk of generating more hurt feelings. The goal is to allow your partner to look back on the relationship as a good thing, not to change it into something less well-defined.
5. Don’t devalue the other person. You’ve been important to each other, so try to show your partner your appreciation for his or her good qualities.
6. Don’t try to make the other person feel better, even as you’re breaking up. You can’t be a part of your ex’s support network after the relationship is over.
7. Don’t have breakup sex. It will only confuse the issue for both of you.
If you can look at your upcoming breakup from your partner’s point of view, you may be able to separate yourself from the grief, loss, and worry you’re feeling well enough to think through what you should and should not say.
By following these guidelines, you stand a good chance of putting a clear and respectful end to a relationship in a way that will allow each of you, someday, to look back with appreciation for the time you spent together.
- Fox, P. (2016). How to break up with a really nice guy. HuffPost, Jun 18, 2016. Retrieved on May 17, 2018 from https://www.huffpost.com/entry/how-to-break-up-with-a-really-nice-guy_b_7615572
- Sanz, A. (2015). What are the psychological effects of breaking up with someone? Quora, July 21, 2015. Retrieved on May 17, 2018 from https://www.quora.com/What-are-the-psychological-effects-of-breaking-up-with-someone
- Svoboda, E. (2011). The Thoroughly Modern Guide to Breakups. Psychology today, January 1, 2011. Retrieved on May 17, 2018 from https://www.psychologytoday.com/us/articles/201101/the-thoroughly-modern-guide-breakups
Check out Dr. Loren Soeiro’s website for more details.
To read more articles written by Dr. Soeiro, click here.
Just like going through a breakup is painful, so is breaking up with someone. People tend to ignore this part, but the person initiating the breakup also experiences a rollercoaster of emotions. But, if you clearly see that you do not have a future with your partner, then it is better to break up now than make the pain worse by dragging it more. However, keep these guidelines in mind to break up better, and in a clean manner.
If you want to know more about how you can break up better, then check this video out below: