Breaking up is never easy, even when the relationship was just casual. Most of us do not enjoy hurting and disappointing others and even if a relationship is unofficial, it is likely someone will end up feeling this way. Just because a relationship is casual does not mean you can walk away without explanation or end it without a care. To end a hookup relationship with care, we have shared a few tips.
Don’t Wait Too Long
It is tempting to keep waiting, hoping the other person gets bored and breaks things off, but it is not fair to either person is you are no longer feeling it. Do yourself and the other person a favor and move on, cutting your losses as soon as you know it is over.
Face to Face
If at all possible, when you have gone out more than a time or two, break up in person. Letting someone know you are over in person is tough, but also a sign of respect. You value them enough to talk it out, even if it was always casual. If in-person is not an option, then a video or phone call is still much better than a text.
For those who want to end a casual relationship without any confrontation, ghosting is very tempting. This means you just fade away by deflecting suggestions of getting together, ignoring calls and texts, but this is the easy way out and can be hurtful to the person being ghosted. Unless it is somehow dangerous to get in touch, have an actual conversation.
Appropriate Time and Place
Just as important as ending things appropriately is choosing the right time. If breaking up in person, choose somewhere somewhat private and easy to get out of if the need arises. Also take into account the time you break-up. Try to consider their schedule, giving them a free weekend to process rather than right before some big, important event.
Honest but Kind
Even a casual relationship deserves a real explanation as to why feelings have changed if you can explain without being mean. Sometimes the person may not be aware they are driving others away, but only bring it up if it is something they can change with ease.
Use “I” Statements
Using I statements are a great way to be firm, but also allow the other person to feel it is not their fault or try to save the relationship. This also prevents most arguments and keeps others from becoming overly defensive. Say things like, “I am over committed to family and work at the moment and cannot be in a relationship” or “I care about you, but I believe this is not where I need to be at the moment.”
There is a reason you got together in the first place, so bring up the positives, whatever they are so your soon to be ex does not feel like they were not good enough.
Do Not Muddy the Waters
It can be tempting to soften the blow by saying you can be friends, but this is not typically a good idea when things were casual. Take time apart so you can both move on by cutting off all contact including social media. When emotions cloud judgment, you end up with regrettable decisions.
Remember that even ending a casual relationship can be difficult. Take the time to figure out how to end it with care and respect to minimize pain and drama for both parties. Once you are no longer in a relationship, you can start looking for a fresh start.