There are about a million wrong ways to break up with someone but they generally have one thing in common – being inconsiderate. Being dumped is already a hard pill to swallow, but doing it in a mean or rude fashion makes it ten times worse plus it increases the chances for blow-back. So the rules for breaking up with someone are:
- Choose your moment wisely. If his nan just died, this is not the moment.
- Rehearse what you’re going to say with a friend so that it doesn’t sound as though you’re placing blame or attacking him.
- Be kind but firm. Do not leave open-ended statements. You’re breaking up with him, don’t leave him with hope – that’s just cruel.
- Listen to what he has to say but don’t be swayed by his arguments. If you’ve already decided to break up with him, staying with him will lead to a power imbalance and ultimately, resentment.
- Understand that he will be angry. This is usually the shock talking. Do not attempt to defend yourself or respond in kind. He’s entitled to his opinion. A handy phrase is, “I can understand how you might feel that way.”
- Obviously if he gets violent – call the cops.
- Take a cooling off period. No, you really can’t be friends immediately after a break-up. Give it some time and see if you even have anything in common other than the fact that you were dating.