I have a boyfriend that I really don’t like anymore but I don’t wanna dump him. I’ve been dumped before and I know how it feels. But I also don’t wanna be the one that gets dumped. How can I break up with him without breaking his heart?
Here’s the ugly truth: break-ups are never fun, and they’re never going to be fun. It doesn’t matter how long you dated someone, or what the situation is, break ups are the worst—for both people involved. I wish I could tell you there was a way to get out of a relationship without hurting anybody’s feelings, but um, there usually isn’t. I can tell you this, though: staying with someone you don’t like isn’t just hurting you, it’s also keeping the person you’re dating from finding someone who might be totally psyched and happy to date them. You see how that’s not really fair?
Aside from keeping your guy or girl from a really happy relationship—you’re also kind of making yourself miserable, and relationships should make you happy, not miserable! For another thing, he’ll probably be able to pick up on the fact that something is wrong—and if he ever finds out that you’re with him out of pity, that might hurt even more than a break-up would.
The most respectful way to break up is in person—I mean, you wouldn’t want a text or FB message saying you and some guy were splitzo, would you? Tell him you care about him, but your feelings have changed. Keep it short and simple, and try not to blame him for the relationship going south. As for the old “let’s still be friends” cliche, only say it if you really mean it—and be prepared for him to want to never see you again. Sometimes having your heart broken makes a friendship impossible.
Even if you say and do all those things, I can’t promise that it will be easy. Sometimes the nicest words can be said during a break-up, but the fact remains that it is just a hard thing to go through. This guy might be upset, and his heart might be broken, you’re doing the best thing for both of you by splitting it off with him now. One day he’ll get over your fabulous self and you’ll both find other fabulous people to be with. Until then . . .
What’s on your mind? Heather can help! Send her your question at firstname.lastname@example.org