Sex & Sociability

Question and commentary on connections, both sexual and social

How to End a Relationship, and How Not To

Some tips on ending a relationship so you will feel less crummy about doing so. Read More

its not as simple as

its not as simple as "courage", sometimes its a matter of safety. I used to think it respectful to meet in person to break up, to give them a chance to ask questions and explain my choice.

After repeated drama and putting myself in dangerous situations, its just not worth the bother.

"...or if it's not a good idea to do so"

I did write the above. I am very aware of the emotional blackmail so many use to avoid being broken off with and of safety issues for men as well as women. These things do have to be taken into account, but "not worth the bother"? If the relationship had any meaning, I feel it is worth bothering to end it as nicely as possible.

what if you're dumping a cheater?

If you have been cheated on then you don't owe them any respect at all. The one you owe respect to is yourself.

If I was cheated on I would just walk away and not say a word. I would just disappear. Let them figure out why I don't have any respect for them.

In other end of relationship situations. I agree with you.

Thank you

Having recently gone through a break up with a person that thought not communicating was more "honest" I appreciate what you've said regarding feeling demeaned and bewildered (it's worth mentioning that this was a 3 year committed relationship) when being the one that's getting the fade away treatment. I can understand feelings change but to not have the decency to tell someone that, at least at some time you cared for, what is going on is just cowardice.

I understand the perspective of being cheated on, I've been there too and honestly, I felt better for having confronted the person and making sure that they knew what a giant disappointment they were.

I'm not afraid of confrontation, maybe that's the hurdle that some people can't get past? I'd rather talk it out than just stew in what seems like injustice at someone elses thoughtless and selfish behavior. Just because you want to hear it doesn't mean you want the relationship back.


Its not easy. sometimes breakups are really hard whether you tell your partener in a right way or not.

I agree with the above

I agree with the above is absolute cowardice to just run away. 15 years in a committed relationship which yes had it's ups and down but nothing major, he came into an inheritance, flew to get it and emailed to end things, no reason, no explanation and feels fine about it evidently after I had supported the relationship in every way you can imagine and his family.Lessons learned are huge, I am free to be myself and pleased to have moved on .....just makes me question whether I ever knew him at eyes have been opened to the world of narcassists

how to psychologically damage someone

I have been in a push-pull relationship for the last 4 years. There has been a lot of distance and he dumped me via text for another woman which devastated me, but this did not last. We started seeing each other again a year later but each time we meet up the same pattern emerged - a few days of togetherness and at the end I get the "it's not you, it's me" and "I cannot give you what you want" lines. It is confusing because he seems happy to be with me and is very affectionate. It distresses me a lot and I get angry at myself because I need to keep away but I get pulled back in and he is the one that keeps breaking it. He is now limiting contact with me and will be moving far away soon. I now wish I had never met him as the last few years have been truly soul destroying.

Intermittent reinforcement

If you never heard about it, read about it. That is what he is doing with you and it is really hard to leave, but it can be done and you should.
Good luck.

Thank you for your suggestion

Thank you for your suggestion - I will read up on this. Yes,it becomes like an addiction but I also need to be responsible for my life from now on and be proactive in making change. I also need to reduce the drama in my life as my health has suffered from it.

Yes to all of that, with one

Yes to all of that, with one major caveat: if you feel you're in danger, you get out of there any way you can. Forget manners, forget all of that. I don't feel that the author emphasized that nearly enough.

What to do when you are ready to move on and the other isn't?

I have been in this relationship for almost 3 and a half years now, and due to some of his comments over me being narrow minded to justify his flirting with every lady he sees, i had decided to end the relationship. But three days pass and all the emotional blackmail and threats to end their life, i had to finally agree to stay and not to leave. I'm still looking forward to move on but don't think he is, and will ever be. Somebody do reply me if they know a way out, bcuz i have already tried all polite ways.

Reply to "What do you do?"

Once you have tried polite you try firm...and do it. You state your reasons for leaving, ask him not to phone, text, email, etc. and you do not reply to any of those. Do not be swayed by emotional blackmail. If you have made up your mind and communicated your feelings, the you act.

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Isadora AlmanM.F.T., is a Board-certified sex, marriage, and family therapist, lecturer, author, and syndicated advice columnist of "Ask Isadora."


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