Whether itâ€™s a long-term girlfriend, a woman youâ€™ve just started dating, or even a f-buddy, not being an idiot about it will save both of you lots of trouble. Best ways to break it off with your girl after the jump!
If youâ€™re ready to call it quits with your girlfriend or even one of yourÂ friends withÂ benefits, youâ€™ll save both of you a lot of trouble if you know what youâ€™re doing. The thing is, most guys have no idea what theyâ€™re doing when it comes time to break up with a girl.Â And so I, as a woman with plenty of experience in bothÂ aforementioned relationship roles, am going to share the break-up techniques that result in the fewest number of hard feelings, public outbursts, and restraining orders.
Method: Sending her an email
Appropriate For: A woman youâ€™ve been dating for no more than a few weeks
According to relationship expert and psychologist Megan Fleming, the email should contain two passages: One that thanksÂ her for the time youâ€™ve spent together and the opportunity to get to know her. And another that mentions something non-physicalÂ that you like about her. Fill out the rest with how youâ€™re not ready for a serious relationship and send it off. That way when she forwards it to herÂ friendsÂ â€” and she will â€” theyâ€™ll respond with something like,Â â€œWell, you donâ€™t want to be with a guy whoâ€™s allergic to relationships anyway, so this is for the best!â€
Method: Gradual radio silence
Appropriate For:A f*ck buddy
To be honest, Iâ€™m tempted to tell you that you should never do this: The woman can get confused. However, if youâ€™re getting tired of your booty call, simply stop texting or calling her. She may get the message and do the same to you. But if she doesnâ€™t, justÂ respond to one of her texts by saying that youâ€™ve been super busy and that the rest of the month is looking crazed. What youâ€™re basically saying is, â€œI donâ€™t have time to have no-strings-attached sex with you,â€ which is a polite way of saying, â€œI donâ€™t even want to have no-strings-attached sex with you.â€ She should get the message.
Method: Make her do it
Appropriate For:A woman youâ€™ve dated for at least six months
Remember how committed you once were to making her think you were the most amazing boyfriend of all time? Well, do the opposite: Pick meaningless fights, be emotionally unavailable, donâ€™t compliment her, and cease all thoughtful gestures (goodnight calls, suffering through chick flicks, saying â€œI love youâ€ unprompted, showing her any PDA). Women are like relationship seismographs; we closely monitor even subtle shifts in couple tectonics. So if you act like that long enough, she will eventually want to discuss whatâ€™s going on. When she approaches you, itâ€™s okay to be apologetic, but donâ€™t go into details about why youâ€™re sorry for whatever it is you did or didnâ€™t do.Â It may take weeks or even a few months, but sheâ€™ll eventually be so fed up with you that sheâ€™ll determine youâ€™re not worthy of her and ditch you.Â Conventional wisdom says this is a dick move. But I asked Fleming anyway because Iâ€™m aÂ journalist, and to my disappointment she said this was okay because â€œthe guy gets to not feel like an asshole and the woman walks away feeling empowered.â€
Method: Telling her in person that you want to end things
Appropriate For:Any relationship, but itâ€™s your only option in a longterm relationship
It takes balls to sit a woman down and tell her you no longer want to be with her, but youâ€™re a man. So act like one. And hereâ€™s good news: Fleming says guys generally feel a huge sense of relief after the conversation ends. The hard part is starting it. â€œThereâ€™s never a â€˜rightâ€™ or â€˜easierâ€™ time to do it,â€ Fleming says. â€œPlus, if you feel like you want to end things, itâ€™s unlikely she hasnâ€™t felt the tension or disconnection.â€ (Like I said, weâ€™re relationship seismographs.) Now, even though youâ€™reÂ doing the dumping face to face, you shouldnâ€™t beÂ literally face to face with your soon-to-be ex. Instead, have the conversation while sitting together on a couch, or hanging on a park bench, or walking; studies have found that men find it easier to have tough talks when theyâ€™re side by side.Â Be willing to talk it out and share information on why youâ€™re over it, so give us intel on what the hell is going on inside your head. Just donâ€™t use phrases that smell of rejection like, â€œI donâ€™t love you anymore.â€ Stick to why you and she arenâ€™t a good fit since that feels less like a straight-up rejection.
Lastly, tell her you want to be friends since, according to Fleming, women want to know that the person with whom theyâ€™ve shared so much isnâ€™t going to permanently disappear. But I recommend saying that you want to be friends â€” and then adding that you arenâ€™t quite ready to be friends right now. Itâ€™ll make her think you still love her, and itâ€™ll make her think youâ€™re struggling with this and will be drowning your sorrows in a roll of uncooked cookie dough, much like she will be. And really, those are the two best thoughts you can leave her with.