What is the best way to break?


Dear GoodTherapy,

I have been with my friend for more than a year and I do not see a future together. It has been fun for a while, but now it feels solid and unacceptable. I do not love him and I never have it. I'm bored, it bothers me now and I do not want to be in the relationship anymore.

My friends told me to end it for months, but I do not know how. I make sure to break up with kids. I usually end up waiting until they disappoint me so much that they decide to end it, and then I feel relieved that it should not. I know that it's probably a terrible person, but I do not like to hurt people's feelings, so it's hard for me to be honest and immediate.

Unfortunately, my friend does not seem to be discouraged by the distance I am putting between us. I do not see him ending this. I'm going to have to do it somewhat and do it. But how? Some friends have broken me with children with text or application. One said leave a written note. Someone said to call him and call him well. My parents say I have to meet him in a public place and deliver the news personally, but I'm worried that he will react badly and make a scene.

What do you think; Is there a "right way" to break (and there is a "wrong way")? -Double decision

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Dear Split,

Thank you for writing with such a big question. First of all, I would like to assure you that none of the things you have described make you an awesome person. Many people do not want to invite potential conflicts, give bad news, or harm other people's feelings. Breaking up with a partner raises all these possibilities. It's hard to do and most people do not enjoy it. in fact, many people avoid it. It seems that avoidance is your approach – you create distance and wait for your partner to be disappointed and end yourself.

I wonder if in your relationships you have a hard time asking what you want or need – you might find yourself humbling suggestions in the hope that your partner will take on them and act. If this hit is true for you, you may think of your pending conclusion as an opportunity to declare your desire: in this case, the desire to end the relationship.

One of the problems with trying to behave in a way that forces your partner to end the relationship is that it can lead to what you are facing now. You want to get out of the relationship and behave as such, but your friend either does not get it or does not matter to the behavior. Either way, it does not end and you're stuck. Trying to force a certain behavior – in this case, a dissolution – from someone else can be quite disappointing for both people. You are wondering why he does not dissolve with you and is increasingly troubled by his presence and perhaps feels bad or disappointed wondering what's going on.

When such an issue appears in my practice, I often think it is emblematic of a general annoyance by asking for what it wants and needs. I wonder if in your relationships you have a hard time asking what you want or need – you might find yourself humbling suggestions in the hope that your partner will take on them and act. If this hit is true for you, you may think of your pending conclusion as an opportunity to declare your desire: in this case, the desire to end the relationship. Knowing how to ask what you need is necessary to have happy and healthy relationships. Even if you want it, you can think of it as a practice for your next relationship.

It's not easy to learn how to be instant and open to your needs and desires. sometimes there are underlying challenges such as self-evaluation of issues or unhealthy models in your family of origin. It may be useful to work with a therapist to explore some of them and apply new behaviors.

As to your question about whether there is "the right way" or the "wrong way" to break up, I think the way you use it is less important than to decide that you will confirm your desire to end the relationship. You want to get out of it, and you wanted to go out for a while. You deserve to stand up and say that and get what you want for yourself instead of waiting and hoping that someone else will give it to you.

My best wishes,

Sarah Noel, MS, LMHC


Sarah Nell

Sarah Noel, MS, LMHC is an authorized psychotherapist who lives and works in Brooklyn, New York. He specializes in working with people struggling through depression, anxiety, trauma and long transitions of life. Approaching her work from an anthropocentric perspective, always recognizing the people with whom she works as an expert in herself. He is honored and humiliated on a daily basis to be able to work with people at such crucial points in their unique journeys.