The Best Advice for Breaking up a Relationship

Oh, the anger, pain, and frustration that comes with breaking up.  Ending a relationship can be very traumatizing emotionally.  It can put such a strain on your emotions that it can influence other areas of your life negatively.

However, don’t despair just yet.

You can end a relationship gracefully, and with compassion in just three steps.  First, you need to understand that ending a relationship happens over a progression of stages.  In the first stage, you begin to notice that you are feeling discontent.  Maybe there are too many disagreements to manage.  In your heart, you know things should be different but you try to convince yourself that you are just in a slump or things are normal.

At the second stage, you realize your happiness is waning.  You begin to imagine yourself in an alternate future that no longer includes your partner.  You start to contemplate what life would be like if you just went your separate ways.

The third stage is feeling as though your relationship issues are too impossible to resolve.  Soon you find yourself reviewing your lifestyle and finding a way to get out and move on.

Take a breath, and stop beating yourself up.  These stages are normal.

In this article, you can find the steps that will help you effectively handle your breakup with some grace and ease.  Now, this is assuming that you have exhausted all other options and you are 100% ready for a split.

No matter how difficult or sad breaking up is, we have to accept that sometimes relationships do end.  With acceptance, you and your partner can maintain your dignity.  When you take the time to pursue a clean break, healing emotionally is much faster and can result in:

  • Less arguing
  • Minimal emotional trauma and hurt feelings
  • The well being of your children is protected (if you have any)
  • Lower legal fees (should they be necessary)
  • Energy to help you move on to a new future

Before you can begin any discussion with your partner, or spouse about breaking up, you must first be very clear about your reasons.  Get a pad and pencil and write down your reasons.  The answers you find here will help you get into preparation for that gut wrenching conversation ahead of you.  When you get ready to begin this conversation, this will help you organize your thoughts and help you be able to articulate what you are feeling.

Step #1:  Knowing the Reasons behind the Breakup

This is where you begin to shape and formulate the conversation that you will have with your spouse or partner.  In essence, you can construct the highs and lows, and the decline from your perspective.  This will help you be able to break the news to your partner in a gentle manner.

Why?

To make the ending a smoother process that will enable you to both experience proper healing.

Here are a few questions to ask yourself to get you started:

  • How and where did you meet?
  • What was the initial attraction?
  • What stood out and made you like them the most?
  • How long have you been in a relationship or marriage?
  • When did you begin noticing issues?
  • When did you begin searching for the end? (It might have been earlier than you are thinking…)
  • Is there someone else?  (If yes, your partner probably suspects it already.)
  • What is your biggest issue about the relationship?
  • Have you found a place to relocate? (If living together or married)

Step #2:  Having a Successful Breakup Conversation

  • Take your time, be gentle and go gradually.
  • Be kind.  There is no reason for name calling or focusing on all the flaws.
  • Avoid being defensive, it is never necessary in any discussion.
  • Regardless of how the other person reacts, stay calm.
  • Avoid phrases such as “If you”, “But”, “Maybe we could”  “If only”, etc.

Try not to leave the door open for a resolution or repair of the relationship.  If you have made up your mind that it is over, it could lead to promises, please, and discussions that are too heart wrenching.  Pick out some positive reasons that you both should move on.

Step #3:  Avoid Anger and Fighting

Let your partner know you are not available for screaming, yelling, name calling, and fighting.  Let them know you want to find a peaceful resolution that both of you can accept.  This is especially important if you have children involved.  If you partner has a poor or negative reaction, it is ok to excuse yourself and recommend that you pick the conversation up at a time when your partner can be more agreeable.

Remember, facing the end of your relationship is never easy.  It is normal to go through a wide array of emotions.  Nevertheless, you are strong, and you can make it through this difficult time.

Life is all about the journey, so don’t be afraid to get out there and explore yours.

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