How to dump your girlfriend without hurting her feelings

Updated March 18, 2017

If you know that your girlfriend is wrong for you, then it is time to end the relationship. That can sound easy at first, but can be very difficult to execute, especially if are afraid of hurting her feelings and breaking her heart. However, the worst thing that you can possibly do for both of you is drag on a relationship is you are unhappy. Learn how to break up with someone with decency, tact, maturity and caring.

Explain your reason for wanting to break up with clarity. Breaking up to a girlfriend with vague and convoluted reasoning can just leave her upset, paranoid and more confused. Before breaking up with her, take a long hard look at your thought process and examine your true reasons. Make sure your decision is truly how you feel. Whether you feel you are taking different paths in life or fight too much, be honest and open with her about your reason to terminate the relationship for good.

Firmly close the door on the relationship. One mistake people often make when breaking up is leaving hope that the relationship might have a future again someday -- even when it doesn't. Avoid giving your girlfriend false hope about the future if you intend on breaking up permanently. This will only lead to hurt feelings and more heartache for her in the end.

Avoid breaking up on the phone. Break up with your girlfriend face-to-face, in person. Breaking up through a phone call can come across as heartless, impersonal and just plain rude. Take the effort and time out to do so in person. Don't chicken out and do it over the phone, as convenient and easy as it may seem at the time.

End the relationship as soon as you realise it is over. As soon as you determine that the relationship has no future and is going nowhere, break up with your girlfriend. Don't allow time to pass with the feelings lingering inside of your head. Remaining in a relationship you want to flee is unhealthy and can leave you with feelings of resentment and suffocation. Stringing your girlfriend along is also selfish. Avoid wasting your time and hers. Break up with her as soon as you come to your realisation.

Break up with your girlfriend privately. Break-ups can be very emotional situations. Provide your girlfriend with the dignity of a quiet and private location when you break up with her, whether it is at your house or in a quiet nook of a park. Avoid taking her to a romantic spot (such as a favourite restaurant), however, as that could lead her into thinking you are about to propose marriage to her, rather than end the relationship.


Exercise tact. If you want to avoid hurting your girlfriend, be tactful with your reasons behind the break-up. Although you want to be honest as possible, use your best discretion. For example, do not tell her "I just don't think you're good enough for me." That will only lead to more hurt feelings, devastation and even anger. In these situations, consider possibly placing the blame on yourself. Say something along the lines of "I do not think I am ready for a serious relationship right now."


Avoid the pitfall of becoming a total jerk and forcing your girlfriend to break up with you first so you do not have to break up with her. Be honest with her, do not waste time and most of all, do not take the cowardly route.

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About the Author

Lars Tramilton has been writing professionally since 2007. His work has appeared in a variety of online publications, including CareerWorkstation. Tramilton received a bachelor's degree with a focus on elementary education from Kean University.