No matter how many dates you go on or conversations you have, you know that you no longer love your other half. Breaking up with someone -- whether the relationship was short or long -- can be difficult and painful for everyone involved. Though letting your girlfriend go will not be pain-free, there are strategies that can reduce any hurt.
While many breakups are the result of weeks or months of planning, others may occur spontaneously. Before you close the door on your relationship, spend some time thinking about your feelings for your girlfriend. It may not be possible to resume your relationship again later on, according to KidsHealth. Rehearsing what you plan to say to her ahead of time can also ensure that you are calm and composed on the day you end the relationship. Going into the conversation without practice may mean that you say more than you plan to - which may end up hurting your girlfriend more.
Whether you no longer love her because the feeling has gone or she has done something wrong, you should never break up with your girlfriend in a place where she may get embarrassed, according to Match.com. If she is in the midst of a rough patch -- a loved one died very recently, for example - postponing the news a little while may also be ideal. Your girlfriend may show a wide range of emotions -- from anger to acceptance. Be prepared when you go into the conversation, and do not let her reactions change your mind.
Though there is no harm in being honest, being too honest can leave your girlfriend devastated, according to eHarmony.com. Insults, accusations and other negative remarks have no place in the breakup conversation. Instead, you may say something to her like, "Courtney, I've enjoyed the time we have had together, but I no longer feel that we are right for each other." You should avoid telling her that you don't love her, that you are no longer attracted to her, or any other variation of those words, according to Match.com.
Both of you are moving onto separate lives, but in the meantime, be honest with your ex-girlfriend about your intentions. Promising to stay friends, or indicating that the relationship may pick up again in the future may give her false hope. It is also cruel to speak poorly of your ex if there is a chance that mutual friends or family members will pass your words on, according to KidsHealth. The same is true if you learn that your ex-girlfriend has unsavory things to say about you. Keep moving forward, acknowledging that the relationship is over and each of you now have the opportunity to find someone to love.
Candice Coleman worked in the public school system as a middle school and high school substitute teacher. In addition to teaching, she is also a tutor for high school and college students.
Michael Blann/Digital Vision/Getty Images