Breaking up is hard to do, but some guys may make it harder than it needs to be. Whether you're over his clinginess, tired of his attitude or just plain ready to move on with your life, breaking up without letting your boyfriend talk you out of it requires tenacity and determination. Once you have decided to break up with him, stick to your plan and do not back down.
Plan on when and how you want to break the news to your boyfriend. Planning out the details of your breakup can prepare you for your boyfriend's attempts to talk you out of your decision. You also may decide that breaking up over the phone or Internet may be better than breaking up in person. Being able to easily walk away from the conversation is one advantage. If you decide to break up in person, do so in a place where you can end the conversation without making a scene.
Tie up loose ends prior to breaking up to prevent a confrontation with your boyfriend later on. Gather your personal belongings from his home and pack up any of the belongings that he has at your home. If possible, deliver his belongings to his residence while he is away to avoid a confrontation. If you have shared bills, such as a cellphone plan or utility expenses, contact each respective company in advance to set up an appropriate payment plan or cancel your policy.
Keep the breakup short, direct and to the point. Don't use excuses such as "It's not you, it's me" out of fear that you might hurt his feelings. Breaking up hurts and veiled excuses may lead to unanswered questions that can cause your ex to seek out answers at a later point. Firmly state what went wrong and why you are moving on.
Tell your ex not to contact you if he intends to try to talk you out of the breakup. You have the right to remain in or terminate your dating relationships as you please. Stating clearly that you do not want to discuss a reconciliation may prevent your ex from pushing the issue.
State firmly that you are moving on. Even if you have explained why you are breaking up, stating that the relationship is over and that you are moving forward with your life can sell the image that you will not be talked out of your decision.
Cut all ties when necessary. While some people can be friends with their exes in time, do not expect a friendship to develop immediately after the breakup. Ignore his calls and texts, even if he tries pushing your buttons or coaxing you into a fight. If the situation calls for it, block his number, unfriend him on Facebook and cut any ties that you have in which he may try to contact you. While this may seem harsh, it will keep the ball in your court.
Prepare for potential backlash. We live in an overly connected digital world. Be prepared for your ex to talk about you to friends and family members and to share his side of the story through social media. Inevitably, some people may take your ex's side, while others may choose to remain neutral. Remain calm and collected if any backlash occurs to avoid drawing negative attention from mutual friends and acquaintances.
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- Psychology Today: The Breakup Text Message: 5 Signs It Could Happen To You
- North Dakota State University: Communication Styles
- Journal of Social and Personal Relationships: The Ex-files: Trajectories, Turning Points, and Adjustment in the Development of Post-Dissolutional Relationships
- Journal of Social and Personal Relationships: Predicting Unwanted Pursuit: Attachment, Relationship Satisfaction, Relationship Alternatives, and Break-up Distress
- Journal of Social and Personal Relationships: A Qualitative Analysis of On-Again/Off-Again Romantic Relationships: “It’s Up and Down, All Around”
- Journal of Social and Personal Relationships: Factors Associated With Distress Following the Breakup of a Close Relationship
- Being firm does not mean that you must be crass or insulting. Even if your boyfriend is pushing your buttons or does not want to accept the fact that you are breaking up, maintain a calm dignity by refraining from name-calling, insults and cursing. In the end, you will appear to be level-headed and can leave the relationship in good conscience, knowing that you did not stoop to that level.
- Avoid dragging out a relationship if you have decided to break up. Ending the relationship as soon as you have come to this conclusion will enable you both to move on sooner.
- There is a fine line between attempting to persuade you from breaking up and invasive behavior. If your ex continues to push the issue, including calling or texting when asked to stop, cyberstalking or showing up unannounced, consider contacting your local law enforcement officials to file a complaint.
Anthony Oster is a licensed professional counselor who earned his Master of Science in counseling psychology at the University of Southern Mississippi. He has served as a writer and lead video editor for a small, South Louisiana-based video production company since 2007. Oster is the co-owner of a professional photography business and advises the owner on hardware and software acquisitions for the company.
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