First, be kind, but honest. Your words can bring life or death. Don’t try to “cushion” it with untruths. That’s not how Jesus would want you to act. And it will only cause problems for them emotionally. Be honest of why you’re choosing to break up. Remember that your words will stick with them for a very long time, so use kind words. But be careful to not give them that “false hope.” A break up is a break up, and they need to know that.
Do it in person. Don’t do it over text. Don’t leave a note. Don’t do a phone call. They deserve an in-person conversation with you.
Be mature about it. Don’t do the “I hate you” thing. That’s not godly. You may hate what they’re doing and disagree with them, but that’s no cause for you to say that. And be honest with yourself: you don’t hate them. You may hate what they’re doing, but you don’t truly hate them. Trying to hurt them back because you’re hurting is just plain wrong. Don’t do it. It’s not Christlike.
It will most likely be a stressful and upsetting thing to do, for both of you, so do it at a time when both of you can recuperate from it. Don’t break up with someone right before a college test, at the beginning of their work day, or before a big event for them. They’re probably already stressed out enough about that, and they don’t need you to wreck them emotionally right before they have to go out and try to be “normal” and “happy.”
My best advice though? Don’t be arrogant. Don’t use cutting words. Be honest. Be compassionate. But, most importantly… be honest. “I feel like our relationship isn’t healthy. And here’s why… And I’m breaking up.” Don’t give them the crap of “It’s not you, it’s me.” Don’t just drop off the face of the planet, letting the relationship die a slow death (you will just leave the other person confused and hurting for a long time). Don’t leave a note. The other person deserves to hold a conversation with you.
And examine your own heart. Why are you breaking up with them? Is it out of fear? If it is, tell them so. Tell them you feel like you need some time being single to spend time with God and heal. Tell them you don’t feel like you can be what they need right now. Tell them the true reason you’re deciding to break up.
And then, give them space. And be honest with them if you need space. Don’t try to go back to “being ‘just’ friends.” Don’t try to hang out with them off and on after the break up. The point of a break up is that you chose to break up. Don’t confuse them. Don’t confuse yourself. Give yourself time and space to heal. Break ups will always be painful things. There’s no way to avoid that.
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“Following Your Feet, A Young Woman’s Journey”
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