The 8 Worst Ways to Break Up With Your Partner

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Breaking up with someone is always uncomfortable. Although there is no ideal way to break up with someone, there are more wrong ways than correct ways to do it, meaning that by reading this list, you should be able to figure out the right way (in person), the right place (in person and in private), and the right time (in person, in private, and preferably not on a special occasion) to do it. Doing it honestly and with dignity will at least help to lessen the blow and leave your ex-partner knowing that there are still righteous people out there. Here are the absolute worst ways to break up with your significant other.

1. Ghosting

Ghosting, the act of fading away and then becoming radio silent is something that occurs more often at the beginning of dating, which unfortunately, some of us have experienced at least once. An Elle survey reports that about 26% of women and 33% of men have been ghosted, but when it comes to longer relationships and major breakups, we tend to be a little more decent. Ghosting is probably one of the worst things you can do to someone, not only leaving them without an inkling of closure, but leaving them to wonder what the hell happened. A simple text in this case will suffice.

2. Under the influence

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When you’re out with your significant other and there is alcohol involved and there are underlying problems in the relationship (i.e. things that are seriously bothering you that you seem to not want to talk about but are making you consider breaking up), there’s no need to worry. Alcohol is there to do it for you. Some of our deepest and darkest secrets rise to the surface when we’re drunk and specifically if those secrets are clouding our emotions. Alcohol helps you do the deed, but will certainly leave you regretting your decision after you sober up. Better to talk things out than to have alcohol do it for you.

3. With cliches

“It’s not you, it’s me” reeks of tacky cliche, and not only that, it’s not the truth. Being honest is hard but most people would prefer a spoonful of honesty. No matter, just be truthful and reveal your issues — don’t be “cliche guy.”

4. Not in person

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Breaking up with someone in person is something that most of us have the guts to do. Mic conducted a 1,802-person survey back in April, using Google Consumer Surveys, concluding that most 25 to 34 year olds are ending their relationships in the most favorable way possible. A surprising 72.4% said that they usually break up with someone “in person.” It’s nice to know that the majority of us still have some manners.

5. Right after reaching a milestone

Moving in together, cohabitation, is a huge milestone to reach as a couple. With each passing milestone it will become harder and messier to break up, more so than at a beginning of a relationship, where the worst of it is picking up some clothes from their place. If you are unsure of the relationship and are considering breaking up, do so before you get further into it. Do everyone a favor, for her especially, and also for your bank account.

6. Beating around the bush

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Simple. Do not beat around the bush or suggest hidden meaning in your words. If you are breaking up with someone, be clear that you are breaking up with them. It’s harsh but then you will not leave her guessing and filled with residual false hope.

7. In public

Tears and anger and more tears and more anger. Breaking up with someone in public is hugely embarrassing and unfair for anyone to do. No one deserves that. In this case, there is a time and place for everything and that place is not in public.

8. Getting caught in the act

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This is more of an unfortunate occurrence in the relationship than it is a way to break up with someone but by doing what you’ve done, you’ve definitely ended the relationship. Cheating is the ultimate form of betrayal, causing distrust in a relationship, leaving it beyond repair unless both parties agree, at some point, to want to continue the relationship, after much thoughtful consideration and regretful apology.

Infidelity seems to be rising amongst 20-somethings. According to a 2006 study conducted by David Atkins of the University of Washington Center for the Study of Health and Risk Behaviors, 19% of married men and 13% of married women under the age of 30 said that they have been unfaithful to their spouse. It can be estimated that these percentages are slightly higher for unmarried couples.

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