Breaking up and staying broken up are hard enough when you live apart. Love is not easy to let go of. But when you live together, your situation adds a whole new set of difficulties. You may have belongings to divide, a lease to get out of, pets to determine custody of, and living arrangements to figure out. But if the relationshipвЂ™s not working, the tough work of ending it needs to be done. If you live with your soon-to-be ex, youвЂ™re going to have logistical considerations to figure out as well as emotional ones. DonвЂ™t get caught up in your feelings and lose sight of these. вЂњOftentimes, when people have вЂspontaneous breakups,вЂ™ they don’t think through the potential financial consequences,вЂќ Kevin DarnГ©, author of My Cat Won’t Bark! (A Relationship Epiphany), tells Bustle. вЂњThey allow their emotions to dictate the timing of their breakups instead of having a practical plan.вЂќ ItвЂ™s important to figure out what youвЂ™ll do about your finances, your lease, your roommates, and everything else so that the breakup doesnвЂ™t become even messier and more complicated.
Here are some tips to keep in mind when navigating the chaotic terrain of breaking up with someone you live with.
Wait Until The TimingвЂ™s Right
Breaking up with a live-in partner is always going to be messy, but there may be times when itвЂ™s less messy, Cynthia Chauvin Miles, CHT tells Bustle. For example, waiting until your lease is about to expire will save you the burden of figuring out whoвЂ™s going to move out or splitting the expenses. Or, if familyвЂ™s about to visit, you may want to wait to get over that hurdle. (The exception is if youвЂ™re being abused or severely mistreated, in which case you should just get out as soon as possible.)
If you find yourself needing to know how to break up with someone you live with though, you can exhale easily knowing there are strategies to help you ensure all goes as smoothly as possible. So, keep reading to learn how to know for sure that it’s really time to go your separate ways, plus the step-by-step process experts recommend following for a nice and smooth roommate uncoupling.
How to know it’s time to end a relationship with your live-in partner
There are a number of signs to look for that point toward it being a good idea to split with your live-in partner. One of them, says marriage and family therapist Lauren Cook, is that you dread being home with them or avoid spending time with them altogether. Furthermore, you may have experienced a sense of dissatisfaction that’s been
going on for a long time.
Jess McCann, relationship coach and author of You Lost Him at Hello, adds that signs can really include any evidence that you’re not happy or feeling fulfilled in the relationship, since these things point to an unhealthy status of your relationship. While this is highly specific to every relationship, if a lack of trust or compromise is present, or your partner is constantly belittling you, it might be time to inch toward ending things—both regarding your relationship and living situation.
“If you and your partner cannot rectify these differences, it may be time to have some serious conversations about what you will do moving forward.” —Lauren Cook, therapist
Values are also a big-ticket item that can make or break a relationship. For example, one person may like going out every night while the other prefers quiet nights at home. “If you and your partner cannot rectify these differences, it may be time to have some serious conversations about what you will do moving forward,” Cook says.
How to break up with someone you live with in 9 simple steps
1. Talk to people
Before the actual breakup takes place, Cook recommends talking about it with someone you trust. This person may be able to help you see different perspectives of the situation that perhaps you’ve been missing. It’s even more helpful to talk with someone who’s been through a similar experience and can offer additional guidance.
2. Have pre-breakup conversations
If the relationship is something you do want to try and save, consider having pre-breakup conversations to talk through where you both are, headspace-wise, address any problems that are surfacing, and surface any other problems you’re feeling. McCann recommends covering three key topics during these conversations: How you each feel things are going in your relationship, whether or not you feel happy, and what you can both do to make things better.
3. Set up a time to chat
Given that you care about this person, it’s only right to not just suddenly spring on them the bad news that you want to stop living together and also want to break up. Instead, set up a time to have a serious conversation. “Mentally preparing them for what you are about to say will help them digest your message once you give it to them,” McCann says.
4. Be conscious of the way you have “The Talk”
“Although you can’t exactly deliver the ‘I want to break up’ conversation in an upbeat way, you can do it lovingly,” says breakup coach Nancy Ruth Deen. That means don’t blame the other person or throw in their face how they contributed to the breakup that’s happening. Instead, focus on expressing your own authentic emotions, and make the conversation more about what you need in your life right now.
5. End in peace
To avoid unnecessary drama and hurt feelings, focus on having a peaceful ending, no matter the reason for the breakup. “Regardless of how mad you are or angry you feel, remember that this breakup will be sad for the other person as well, and that it’s best not to leave a relationship trying to win or have the final word,” McCann says. “You’ll regret that later. Instead, try to leave in peace, knowing you did all you could, and preserve the love that was once between you.”
6. Give each other some space
After you’ve had the talk, things will likely feel a little sensitive. That’s why Deen recommends spending a few nights away at a hotel or at a friend or family member’s house. “This is important, as you need some meaningful distance to process the end of the relationship,” she says.
7. Discuss how you’ll part ways
The next step in answering how to break up with someone you live with has to do with the logistics, like ending a rental lease, who gets to keep what, etc. “It’s better to ask your partner how they want to deal with the lease and bills and allow them to take the lead on it,” McCann says. “After all, you have just laid a big blow on them, so the least you can do as a peace offering is let them have priority on who does what, or who gets what. Approach the discussions in a state of love and peace, and not anger. You’re more likely to get you way.”
8. Gather a support system
You’re not meant to go through it all alone. Reach out to friends and family to be there for you during this time, not just emotionally but to help you sort out all the nuts and bolts, too, like packing, getting organized, looking for a new place, and moving out. “Social support plays a huge role in the healing process,” Deen says. “Having a loved one by your side can also help diffuse any potential fighting between you two in the process.”
9. Process, process, process
Once everything is said and done, Cook says it’s important not to bottle up or suppress your feelings or emotions. “Talk with family, friends, and perhaps a mental-health professional as you navigate this loss,” she says. “If it’s helpful, process the loss with your partner so that you both can get a sense of closure.” During the healing process, every day will be different, so remember to tune into what your mind and body needs and give yourself the time and space to move through it all.
Now that you know how to break up with someone you live with, learn about how your attachment style can impact how you handle a breakup. And after it happens, this breakup playlist can help you move on.
“I saw us as a team, and they saw me as their adversary.”
It can be hard to know when to break up with someone and end a long-term relationship. Maybe they cheat on you, or you cheat on them, and that’s just it. Decision probably made. You call time on it because well, game over, obviously. But deciding to break up can also be really bloody difficult sometimes. Especially if they haven’t done anything particularly awful, and it’s more that you’re just not 100 per cent happy. And, even after you’ve tried everything to make it work, you can still have that feeling of uncertainty and doubt.
Unless your relationship is actively unhealthy, people often feel guilty for wanting to end a relationship. So, these 12 women explain how they knew when to break up with their long-term partners. Hopefully it will give you some comfort if you’re going through the same thing.
1.”I needed a partner, not a child”
“When I looked at him one day and realised I liked it better when he wasn’t there, because I wasn’t stressed out about his mental and physical health, something he never took personal responsibility for. I needed a partner, not a child older than me. I needed someone I was attracted to, spiritually, sexually and emotionally and I just didn’t feel that way about him anymore. He’s not a bad guy, he just wouldn’t and couldn’t get his shit together. And after 4.5 years together, I just wasn’t about resigning myself to being a caretaker at 24.” [via]
2.”My needs came last”
“When we were in the home buying process and all of my home needs and wants kept being superseded by [theirs]. I negotiated for a compromise over and over but was dismissed every time. I realised my needs, both in a home and in the overall relationship, came dead last. Things unraveled from there.” [via]
3.”My gut said he wasn’t it“
“I had been dating a really great guy for years, and over the course of some months realised he wasn’t who I pictured growing old with, and that’s all there was to it. We got along great, but we were still pretty young and I didn’t feel in my gut like he was it — there was something missing that I couldn’t put words to, even though we had by all accounts, a healthy and happy dynamic for the most part. It made the breakup so much worse because he didn’t understand why I felt this way. I wished I could’ve pointed to something he did, or something about him that showed me things were wrong, but I couldn’t. It sucks because nobody had ever told me that sometimes there isn’t necessarily a catalyst, or a specific thing that makes you realise things aren’t right, so I felt — and still feel — really guilty that I couldn’t give him a better explanation or some sense of closure. Sometimes it’s just not right.” [via]
4.”I didn’t miss him when I was away”
“I think on some level I always knew. But I was still young and worried about the idea of being single, so I stuck with it. Crunch time came when I went away for the summer and basically just didn’t miss him at all. Spent a lot of time reflecting on things away from everything familiar with a group of people I became very close friends with. Broke up with him on my return. I don’t regret it as such, and I firmly believe if I’d chosen a different path (aka not being with him or breaking up sooner) certain wonderful events in my life wouldn’t have then happened the way they did. But I do kinda look back and think. wtf was I thinking, y’know?” [via]
5.”It was all too serious”
“I broke up with my first real boyfriend because he made a comment about buying me a necklace for my 18th birthday. It was a semi-expensive (but very expensive for a 16 and 19-year-old) necklace that we saw window shopping. He said he would save up and buy it for my 18th. I remember stuttering something about how he was planning to go to university the next academic year. He responded that he was going to the local university because I will be doing A levels and he ‘obviously’ was going to stay around for me. The realisation that he was apparently basing such big life decisions around me and was so serious, and made me feel like I was going to throw up.” [via]
6.”I didn’t want to be with only him for the rest of my life”
“When he told me that he only wanted to be with me for the rest of his life, and I honestly felt sick and panicky at the thought of that. We were just too incompatible to continue to work on our relationship and move forward.” [via]
7.”He saw me as his adversary”
“I was having an argument with my ex (I don’t even remember what it was about now) and I said, ‘It’s not about winning, it’s about us understanding each other and working it out’.
“It’s not about winning”
“And he just looked at me in utter disbelief and said, ‘Of course it’s about winning!’ It really hit me why we struggled so often; I saw us as a team and he saw me as his adversary.” [via]
8.”I didn’t want his kids”
“When I had a thought that I wouldn’t want him to be the father of my ‘future children’.” [via]
9.”We weren’t that close”
“When I accepted I no longer enjoyed our time together enough. I liked him as a person and friend still, but we weren’t close friends and we weren’t compatible to be close friends. That needs to exist in a relationship IMO. I remember one week I realised I contacted my best friend far more, and wanted to see her more than I wanted to see my ex. I’m sure he felt the same.” [via]
10.”He became possessive”
“When we started college and I joined a student society, and he became very possessive because he didn’t like me having a social life outside of my school and family. We lasted a little under a month after that because that’s how long it took me to realise he really wasn’t going to have a change of heart.” [via]
11.”I met someone else”
“I had known for a while but was denying it in order to keep everyone else happy. I didn’t fully believe I could do better, but met someone who was what I thought to be so far ‘out of my league’. [It] made me realise that nobody is out of anyone’s ‘league’, that it isn’t even a real thing, and that I could do better for my life in so many ways. I didn’t cheat on him with this better person, but this other person did in a way help me realise my own self worth.” [via]
12.”I couldn’t see a future together”
“My ex wanted to marry me, and I genuinely couldn’t see a future together. Anytime it was brought up, it felt like I’d swallowed a stone. We argued like a cat and a raccoon over a lot, even the minor stuff, and there were too many incompatibilities and inconsistencies between us to envision longevity. I knew if I married him, it would be like us willingly shackling ourselves to anchors. Sounds harsh, but I couldn’t see either of us being happy, or even close to it down the road.” [via]
My last breakup was with someone whom I still cared about, and it sucked. I loved my boyfriend very much, but the relationship started to feel stagnant, and it was time to move on. We were moving forward, but not as a couple. We were growing in separate directions that had caused us to feel more like friends than lovers. It’s hard to know how to break up with someone when you still love and care about them very much. The moment never exactly feels right, because you don’t want to hurt someone you care about, and you don’t want to stop hanging out with each other either.
When my ex and I broke up, he came over, and we had a long discussion about how we weren’t compatible for one another at this point in our lives. He was struggling in his career and felt the need to concentrate on it in order to feel happy and stable in his life and, thus, couldn’t give his full attention to me. I cared about his happiness and couldn’t continue to feel neglected in a relationship. We broke up, cried a little, watched a movie, and then, he slept over (bad decision). Yes, we hooked up. Then, the next morning, I left for work, and I never saw him again.
When I got home that night, he had left love notes all over my apartment, telling me he would miss me and how much he cared about me. He also stuck a note on the fridge saying, “Remember when you cooked that horrible dinner,” and one on the toilet that said, “Remember how embarrassed you were when you clogged this on our third date,” which made me smile. but also miss him. It’s easy to break up with someone you hate or to move on from a relationship that’s broken. That’s why they’re called breakups after all, right? But breaking up with someone you still care about is hard. You don’t want to do it, even though it’s the right decision.
Elite Daily spoke to two experts about how to break up with someone you’re still in love with, even when it hurts. Because you deserve to have it be as painless as possible.
1. Do It In Person
So many of my relationships have ended over text or on the phone, and I think that’s why it took so long to get over them. The book felt unfinished. I never got closure, and things felt unresolved with those partners. I wanted to ask my exes questions or see their expression when things were ending, but all I was left with was the crying emoji instead. Every time I’ve ever broken up with someone over the phone, text, or email, the subsequent months are filled with plans to finally meet up in person and discuss what happened. But if you do it in person the very first time, you can have a clean break from the very beginning.
“The most important thing you can do for them to show compassion is to explain why,” Dr. Joshua Klapow, clinical psychologist and host of The Kurre and Klapow Show, previously told Elite Daily. “If you can answer the question for yourself then you should offer that to them.” If you and your partner are still in love but it’s time for your relationship to end for other reasons, then you at least want to give your significant other the respect of breaking up in person. It will help to give both of you closure and allow for an honest and thorough conversation that can help both of you move on.
2. Be Strong (And Also Don’t Hook Up)
If you’re still in love with the person you’re breaking up with, then you might be unsure about your actions. Should we really end things, or can we work this out? Maybe we’re just having a bad day, week, or month. Can we get over this? Is moving on a mistake? But if you’ve thought about this thoroughly and you’re sure the relationship is not right for you, then be strong and resolute in your decision, and don’t get swayed into staying together.
“Ask yourself this: ‘Why do I not want this and what would make things different?'” Dr. Klapow said. “Ask yourself: ‘Have I had the conversations clearly and specifically about what is not working and what is working?’ If you love the person, then you need to be very sure that you are very clear about why you donвЂ™t think it is going to work.” Be firm that things are ending, and, no matter how tempted you are, do not hook up after you break up. It’ll only end up leading both of you on and keep you wondering if you’re making the right decision. Overall, it’s just a bad idea.
3. Set Boundaries
After a breakup, it’s important to set boundaries and clarify breakup behaviors. It’ll make the transition to friends (or strangers) easier, and boundaries can help you from getting hurt even more after a breakup. I remember after I broke up with one of my exes, I was really hurt when I found out he had hooked up with someone else. The reason I felt hurt was because he and I were still talking every day, and it felt like we were still very much together, even though we weren’t.
“There is not an easy way to break up with someone you love,” Dr. Klapow said. “Recognize that there is a decent chance you are going to hurt feelings.” Establishing boundaries between you and your ex can save you a lot of heartache and help to clarify the role you play in each other’s lives. Are you going to stay friends on social media? Are you still going to talk, and if so, how often? Are you going to see one another in real life? What’s the rule about hooking up with each other? Are there certain things you don’t want to talk about with one another?
4. Take Time Apart
If you’re still in love with your significant other, that’s not going to end right when you break up with them. You’re still going to miss them. You’ll want to call, text, and talk with the same frequency as you always do. You’ll still want to hang out. In my last relationship, after we broke up, I remember how badly I missed my boyfriend on the couch every night, sitting next to me, watching our favorite shows. I knew we weren’t right together, but couldn’t we still hang?
The answer is no, not so soon. Right after a breakup, you need to take some much-needed space to heal and actually get over one another. You can’t go from lovers to friends immediately just because you’ve said the words “we’re done.”
“ItвЂ™s useful to initiate the breakup conversation at a time when you all have space during/afterward to respond to your subsequent feelings and reactions,” James Guay, a therapist who specializes in high-conflict couples, previously told Elite Daily. “In other words, donвЂ™t start the conversation right before you each have to go to work or to an important event.”
You need time to actually get over one another, or you might just end up back together again вЂ” or back in bed at least. And if you prolong the breakup, you’re only prolonging the time it takes for you to finally start moving on and feeling better.
Breaking up is hard to do, especially when you’re doing it with someone you still care about. But if it’s the right decision for you, then you have to make it. Be firm and direct, and make sure you establish proper boundaries after you’ve decided to part ways.
Additional reporting by Iman Hariri-Kia.
This article was originally published on 09.26.17
Everything I know about live-in breakups I learned from how my ex-wife ended it.
Posted April 6, 2017
Our occasional marital spats sprawled out into all-consuming arguments. Finally, my wife simply declared that she wanted out.
Out wasn’t as simple as packing a bag and leaving. We had three kids, a mortgage, property to divide, but mostly the kids, our youngest, five.
A bomb like the one she dropped made me feel like there was plenty more to argue about. She told me at night at a hotel. Outraged, I ranted before storming off to the hotel desk to get a separate room. The next morning, we met in time to drive to the airport together. I resumed my rant where I had left off. My wife, who had until then tolerated my rants, interrupted me and told me gently but firmly that the arguments were over for good.
For close to two decades, my wife had been my most intimate companion. Overnight at the hotel, she became like a casual acquaintance, consistently cordial at a safe friendly distance. She would not discuss our past. We lived together for months after her announcement as we sorted out how to create entirely separate lives.
It took me a while to adjust to the sudden end to our bickering. I made many attempts to stir things up. At the time, I was outraged by her sudden transition to cool cordiality but, looking back, I think it was brilliant, the kindest thing she could have done for me.
No confusion, no ambiguity, no getting my hopes up only to let me down, no stringing it out or stringing me along. In retrospect it was on that one hotel night that we transitioned to the friendly relatives we have become, and all thanks to her lead and her unwavering commitment to showing me the new way we would be together.
These days it’s getting both easier and harder to end partnerships—easier because people often partner more casually and tentatively without kids or cohabitation. But with a tight economy, people do still combine resources, and end up having to live with exes, transitioning emotionally long before they have a chance to move out.
Here are a few ways to make the extended stay as peaceful as possible for all parties involved.
Cordiality is the greater kindness: Your ex may try to provoke the old arguments and flirtations, the way I did, and to guilt-trip you for becoming so cold and uncaring. Once you’ve decided to break up, ignore it. Drop the past. Act like housemates thrown together awkwardly, making the best of it by staying friendly at a safe distance. It’s the best way to show you care about making a smooth transition once it becomes inevitable. They may not see it that way. They may accuse you of pathological indifference. They’ll throw the morality book at you the way I did my ex-wife. They’re wrong. When it’s over it’s over even if living together isn’t. Clear signaling is the best you can do.
Selective silence: Living together, you’ll still have to talk. Stay cordial. Do not provoke. And when your ex provokes you, do not take the bait. Often the best way to do that is with silence. Don’t even say that you’re not going to respond. Just pretend they didn’t say anything. They may badger, but that too is provocation. If you’re consistent, they’ll learn what formerly open topics are now closed forever.
Find an inside retreat: If possible, establish private, separate space within your dwelling, a room of your own that you can go to—out of sight, out of mind.
Give up on explaining to each other what happened: To make relationships work we try to sync an account in common, a common identity. That’s what all of those arguments are about: Processing our relationship means trying to reconcile the discrepancies between our accounts about what it means to be partnered. At breakup, our accounts of who we were together tend to diverge by a lot, both exes emphasizing what the other did wrong. Even if one of you admits to having done wrong, there will be divergences, the wronged one having to resolve to not expect any improvement, and the wronging party having to hope they can improve. For example, if one admits to being an alcoholic but too late to save the marriage, the alcoholic has to hope he can change and the wronged party has to doubt he can change.
You will probably find that you have to vent to someone. Just resist the temptation to vent to your ex. That’s over. Chalk up the ending to something innocuous and even-handed like incompatibility or irreconcilable differences. Do not sustain the momentum accumulated over years of trying to reconcile your common story. Your stories are likely to become oil and water to each other.
Spare the kids: Do everything you can to shield them from the strife, of course. They too need to learn a new way to be family. Your clear signaling to your live-in ex is signaling to them too, both for how to be family from now on, and how to set clean, clear boundaries when necessary, always a useful lesson for children to learn.
When you signed your lease with your significant other neither one of you was anticipating that the relationship (and living situation) wouldn’t work out. Breaking up is never easy to do, but if you live together it adds a whole new set of issues. Fortunately, we’ve been through this before and have a few helpful pieces of advice.
Deciding Who Stays and Who Goes
Even if things are ending on a bad note you’ll need to hash everything out. You’ve got to figure the living situation out and plan the next steps for moving forward. The easiest question to answer is whether or not one of you wants to stay. If so, the other person should start looking for a new place ASAP.
- If the person staying will need another roommate to help cover rent you should both work on finding a good fit.
- If neither of you wants to stay see if subletting is an option. Some properties allow it while others have zero tolerance for subletting.
- If you both want to stay the person who was living their first should get to keep the apartment.
- Keep the conversation civil and productive. The situation will be hard enough as it is, and fighting will do nothing but slow down the process of moving on.
- Set a move out date. This will ensure that the process isn’t delayed any longer than it needs to be.
- Consider looking for a cheap month-to-month apartment while one or both of you look for a more permanent place and share the cost of the extra temp apartment.
- As soon as you get things figured out let your landlord or property manager know about the situation and begin the process of getting all the paperwork and logistics lined up.
Sticking It Out Short Term
If you only have a month or two left on your lease it may be best to stay put for the short term. That way you won’t have to suffer the repercussions of breaking a lease, which could make it difficult to find a new apartment. Plus, this will give you both time to find a place and move out without feeling pressure to get it done right away.
- See if one of you can crash with friends or family.
- If needed plan to switch out staying with others while one of you stays in the apartment.
- Readjust your schedules so that you don’t have to see each other as often and you each have alone time at the apartment.
- Create private space for each person.
- Definitely do not bring a date back to the apartment.
- Keep your emotions in check. It may be easy to fall back into the couple routine, which will only confuse things.
- Lay out the boundaries for interaction, household chores and using shared spaces. Remember, you’re roommates now, not in a relationship.
Handling Financial Matters
One of the most difficult things to deal with is the financial consequences of breaking up with someone you live with. It’s easy to say that the biggest breadwinner should cover more of the cost or the person that caused the breakup should pay for everything, but that’s just not fair.
- Moving out doesn’t remove responsibility. You’ll both still be responsible for the rent no matter where you live.
- Absolutely do not leave the other person hanging. Even if money is tight there are real credit issues that can result from failing to make payments.
- Make sure all the utilities, cable bills, Internet are paid before the move.
- Decide who will take on any lingering loans or shared debt. It’s best to get this in writing as a safety net.
- If needed, hire a mediator to handle issues that you can’t settle on your own.
- Discuss the situation with your landlord to see if there is any way they can help lessen the financial blow, like refunding the deposit if you help them find new tenants or cover the cost of finding someone new.
If you both plan to move out of the apartment and you have to break the lease you’ll likely lose the security deposit. If you both paid half then there’s no problem. But if one person paid the entire deposit, the other person should reimburse them half of what was lost.
Who Gets What
Surveys have found that renters thought it was harder to figure out who got what after a breakup than it was to work out the financial issues. This is likely because there’s no splitting things down the middle with most possessions. Some rules for figuring out who should get what include:
- Gifts go to the recipient not the giver.
- Whoever bought it gets to keep it if they want it.
- Don’t try to keep things you don’t want or need out of spite.
- If it was a joint purchase the person who gets the item should consider reimbursing the other.
Start Fresh With a New Apartment
A change of scenery may be exactly what you need to truly move on. Even if you love the apartment you’re in, it holds a lot of memories that may make it difficult for you to be single again. It can feel like your ex is still there in the space you once shared. Moving into a new apartment is a fresh start, and it gives you the opportunity to find a home that is specifically for you.
Sometimes there’s a clear cut sign that you’re ready to end your relationship with a long-term partner. For example, if your partner betrays your trust or treats you poorly in any concrete way, it’s probably a sign that you should consider leaving. That being said, the signs you’re ready to break up with your partner are not always easy to detect. A recent RedditAskWomen thread asked ladies to share how they knew it was time to move on, even when nothing major was necessarily wrong.
It might seem difficult to end a relationship that doesn’t have a glaring problem on the surface, but sometimes it’s the only right thing to do. Once you’ve looked at the signs that point toward “break up with them,” you’ll have to actually do. Kiaundra Jackson, a relationship expert and founder of therapy practice KW Essential Services, explained how it doesn’t have to be too difficult at all. She told Elite Daily, “There is no better way to have this conversation than to just do it.” After you’ve looked at the reasons why ending it is best, you can also play out the scenarios of how your ex-partner will react. Per Jackson, “That way, if any of the three scenarios happen, you are well-prepared with a response.” Now, take a look at the signs to help you get there.
Not knowing when to let go used to be my No 1 problem. It was a combination of low self worth and fear of the unknown / being alone. I got stuck in some very poor and one dangerous relationship because of them. I stuck with them so far past the expiration date and made myself miserable.
I was raised to not be selfish. I think a lot of that is very Asian, too (my other is Vietnamese). Being selfish is a terrible thing. So I think that factored in and I would put the other’s happiness above my own to my detriment. Except the other person wasn’t happy either – one ex was abusive and impossible to please and another ex was a man child I had to wait on hand and foot.
I finally had to learn to think better of myself and know I was worth more than the poor quality of men I was with. I had a right to be happy. If that was being selfish, than I would be selfish.
After that I met some good guys, but they weren’t the right one and breaking up became easier. It wasn’t their fault or mine the relationship didn’t work; I had a clearer picture of what I wanted and they were not it.
I ask myself, “Am I happy? How do I feel when I anticipate seeing this person? Does this person make me feel safe? Can I tell this person anything, good or bad?”
This is going to sound really calloused, but I just stopped finding anything he did as funny or cute. Instead, he annoyed me constantly. The little quirks that I had been able to overlook before were suddenly slammed in my face all the time and I couldn’t handle how immature he was.
More tellingly, I told him I felt like I was starting to not love him anymore. He tried to fix things and I. genuinely. didn’t really want to. There had been too many things between us that had made me so unhappy. There were even more things that made it clear to me that we just weren’t compatible in the long run.
The relationship just felt like it was dying slowly. I knew I had to just end it because stringing him along by pretending that “working on us” was going to work was cruel. After all, he wasn’t going to change and neither was I. No amount of therapy, heart-to-hearts, or date nights was going to help.
Was with my ex for around 6 months, and put up with all his crap because i вЂњlovedвЂќ him. Near the last month or so i fell out of love with him. I was just looking for an excuse to end it.
Once you realize you donвЂ™t care anymore, thatвЂ™s when you end it. It got to the point where i was so used to him treating me like shit, that i didnвЂ™t even have a reaction to it. ThatвЂ™s when i got out of there. If it gets to the point where youвЂ™re an emotionless robot then itвЂ™s time to go
There doesn’t have to be a scandalous thing to end a relationship. Of course sometimes it’s the person own personal issues that make them sabotage their relationship. Like getting cold feet over the subconcious fear of getting dumped. Good to check why you feel what you feel to prevent future regret. But just because someone is a supportive partner and a good person does not mean there’s enough compatibility or love to stay in the relationship. I left my ex because we both fell out of love, although we still loved each other as friends. We were too young and inexperienced to work on getting things better more than we already had. We grew apart and became people who couldn’t even be very close friends with.
I broke up with my SO two months into our engagement, I probably should have let go sooner but I guess my head cleared when I realized I would potentially be spending the rest of my life with him. Some signs I listened to:
I started rationalizing getting married to him by thinking “I can always divorce him.” Which is a giant red flag. You shouldn’t already be thinking of a way out before your wedding.
When you feel like you can’t talk to them. Every conversation started feeling like walking on eggshells, I was afraid to have an actual argument with him and when we did talk we bickered.
When you’re not staying for the right reasons. I realized I was staying with him for two reasons: future stability and sunk cost and I didn’t like those being the only two factors
Being with them starts to be more draining than enjoyable. He demanded most of my time and attention and depended on me for him emotional well being and that’s a lot on one person.
When they change and stop doing a lot of the stuff you fell in love with them doing and you stop feeling the same way about them.
I think a lot of people forget about “compatibility” in relationships; instead waiting for some catastrophe to end it. You can like someone and not be compatible. You need to have things in common. You need to see each other as equals. Arguments shouldn’t revolve around power struggles. Arguments should get resolved, too, not just die in the wind.
This person should make your life better. If you feel life is about the same with them in it, then they’re probably more of a friend than an SO.
When I start fantasizing about dating other people is usually my biggest hint that I’m over it.
When itвЂ™s felt like too much work and no giving back in equal weight.
My ex and I broke up last month. I was still into him when this happened but I knew too well that itвЂ™s best to let go.
Sent him messages, waited days to get a reply.
Asked to video chat after his work (we were on LDR), he said yes, I called you, but never did.
Went to his city that he knew too well that the trip costed me a fortune, but bailed out five hours before our rendezvous, saying he needed to sort something out. (I was with my mom so heвЂ™s not the only one I was focusing on)
IвЂ™m not dumb, hopeless and desperate so letting go is the best way. 🙂
Trying to decide whether or not you should end your relationship? Answer one simple question: What are they adding to your life? If the answer to that question is a big fat “nothing,” it may be time to go.
Are you constantly walking on eggshells? Is the other person in your relationship showing controlling behavior?
Breaking up may be the last thing on your mind, but if you’re stuck in a toxic relationship, it’s the best thing you can do for yourself.
Ending toxic relationships, while necessary, are not always easy.
Whether that unhealthy relationship was with a boyfriend or girlfriend, husband or wife, co-worker or boss, family member or friend, breaking up with someone can be nerve-wracking. But, even so, it doesn’t have to be dramatic or full of fire.
The important thing to remember is that you need to put yourself, first.
Here are 11 tips for how to break up with someone and end a toxic relationship, peacefully.
1. Acknowledge your part
It’s not necessarily your fault that you are in a toxic relationship. But many relationships didn’t start off toxic from the get-go. instead, it slowly becomes that way over time.
Acknowledging that there are things you could’ve done differently will help you as you move forward into future relationships, so you don’t make the same mistakes again.
2. Focus on yourself
Coming to terms with the end of any relationship — whether positive or negative — can be difficult for all parties.
It’s important to focus on yourself and your reasons for ending the relationship. Stay committed and true to what’s best for you.
3. Gather support
As you prepare to end a toxic relationship, having a reliable support network in place will only help you both before and after.
Being able to bounce off ideas and play out scenarios will help you prepare to end your toxic relationship in the most peaceful way possible. And, even if ending the relationship was necessary, it’s still reassuring and comforting to know that you have people around you who are there for you and will help you deal with the aftermath.
4. Be prepared
Having an idea of what you want to say, how you want to say it, and a few key things you want to make sure to get across is crucial.
Ending a toxic relationship can come with a lot of emotions — both yours and the other person’s — and you don’t know how they will react. Practicing what you’re going to say and even writing down a few things you want to remember, may help you more peacefully and smoothly end the relationship.
You’ll also want to prepare for a range of different reactions that the other person may have and prepare yourself as much as possible.
5. Use “I feel” rather than “you” language
When talking to the person you’re ending the toxic relationship with, you need to be aware of what triggers they may have, depending on their role in your life.
Don’t put all the blame for this toxic relationship on them and use language that puts what you’re feeling on yourself, rather than entirely on their words and actions. This may make ending the relationship go more smoothly and be safer for you as well.
6. Don’t delay
Once you’ve identified that you’re in a toxic relationship and have come to the realization that you need to get out of it, don’t put it off.
The sooner the relationship is done, the sooner you can move on with your life and make way for new, positive, and healthy relationships.
7. Stay strong
Be confident in your decision to end the toxic relationship you’re in and don’t let the other person sway you if they try to.
You are exiting this relationship for you and have good reason to.
8. Do it in person
Unless you are genuinely fearful for your safety, it is important to end your toxic relationship in person.
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This is the mature and responsible thing to do and will give you more closure than sending an email or text or doing it over the phone.
9. Find someplace neutral and private
When you end a toxic relationship, you want to be in a neutral setting. This way, you are both on equal footing.
It’s also a good idea to end the relationship someplace a bit more private unless you’re afraid of the person and their potential volatile reaction. If this is the case, stick to somewhere more public that will be safer for you.
Even if you don’t want to, just as you need to end the toxic relationship and say what you need to say, the person you’re removing from your life will likely also have some things to say to you.
Allowing them to say their piece and truly listening will help both of you get closure. However, if what they’re saying becomes derogatory, hurtful, or increasingly negative. politely remove yourself from the conversation just as you are from the relationship.
To truly heal and move on from a toxic relationship, it’s important to forgive — not just the other person, but yourself. You are that much older and wiser as you end this destructive relationship. Hopefully, you won’t find yourself in another one as you’ve lived and learned.
Toxic and unhealthy relationships are not all the same, so it’s important to keep in mind the specific characteristics of your personal toxic relationship when you are preparing to end it.
These 11 tips should guide you in making the ending of your toxic relationship more peaceful and help ready you for the next stage of your life, toxic relationship-free.
Michael Saad is a straight-forward Results Coach that helps people break from toxic relationships through personal development. For more information, visit his website.
This article was originally published at Michael Saad. Reprinted with permission from the author.