Ask a Guy: How Do I Break-Up with My Boyfriend? post image

Ask a Guy: How Do I Break-Up with My Boyfriend?

I’ve been dating this guy for the last six months.  We’ve said “I love you” and things were great during the first 3 months of the relationship. After that, things started to go downhill.  He started becoming paranoid and thinking that I was flirting with other guys, that I didn’t like him as much as he liked me, etc.

I have been faithful the whole time and have not been “shopping around”, but after that three month mark he became clingy and desperate.  I don’t want to sound heartless, but I started to lose my attraction to him.

He’s a good guy, I care for him, but I’ve made up my mind that we should no longer be dating.  Can you give me some advice on the best way to break up with my boyfriend?

Breaking up is never clean, but there are definitely good and bad ways to do it.

I can understand where you’re coming from though.  In the same way that I caution women against being needy, the type of behavior you are describing here is the male equivalent (the paranoia, accusations, need for reassurance that you like him, etc.)

I’m going to tell you a story.  Bear with me, I promise that I’m going somewhere with this.

As a guy, I can say I’ve been there – it sucks.  A long time ago, I had a girlfriend who I started dating “accidentally” I guess you could say.  I met her at a time in my life when I really wasn’t looking to date anyone.

When we met, I didn’t have much feeling for her either way.  She was good and all, but I didn’t really see a future.  Still, we saw each other a few times, hooked up and spent some really amazing time together.  Then we both went home for the holidays.

We sent a couple messages back and forth over break, then out of the blue, she called me and asked for my thoughts on us being exclusive.  If it were today, I would have said “not at the moment” (in the nicest way possible), but for some reason I said, “Sure.  Let’s be exclusive and see where it goes.”

So I committed myself into an exclusive relationship that I wasn’t 100% into.  From that point on, everything changed.

It wasn’t readily apparent at first, but after about 3 months I felt like I was putting in all the energy to try and keep the relationship together.  I felt as though I didn’t really know what she was thinking or how she was feeling – it was almost like I was dating someone I didn’t really even know.

Still, I had this overpowering feeling that if I didn’t keep the relationship together that it somehow meant I was a failure.  I began getting wrapped up in my own fears, worries and what it meant about me.

If I had looked at the relationship itself clearly, I would have seen that it was a mediocre relationship that had some good moments at the beginning, but there was no future.  Unfortunately, I wasn’t able to be that honest with myself.

Long story short (too late), she left for the summer that year and then dumped me one week before she came back over the phone.

She said she loved me, but it just wasn’t working anymore.  She said that I was a great guy, but she really didn’t see any saving the relationship.  And she said that she would love to be friends if that could be possible.

The truth is, that was the best way she could have possibly dumped me.

And how did I respond?  Well…  First I was shocked.  Then I was depressed and self-pitying.  Then I went out, got drunk with my buds and hooked up with the first girl I could find.

Now maybe you’re thinking that hooking up with the first girl I could find was a taking the low road, but the fact was that I felt so worthless, ineffective and unwanted that I guess I just needed to know that someone out there found me desirable.

The way I responded was my problem.  It came up from my own issues. In fact, it had almost nothing to do with my ex or the relationship and everything to do with how I thought of myself.

I lacked the confidence back then to know that how others respond to me is secondary to how I see myself.  I lacked the experience back then to realize that the relationship didn’t have anything I really valued to begin with.  And I lacked the perspective back then to see that regardless of what my ex was like during our relationship, it meant nothing about me or who I was as a person (although it may have meant something about my approach…) :)

My point in all of this is that her breaking up with me was painful, but it lead me to learn some very valuable lessons.  Dragging out the relationship any longer would have done neither of us any good.  I needed to learn these life lessons and she wanted a different type of guy in her life.

So in your situation, I would recommend the same thing:  A frank, to-the-point conversation – it’s not working anymore, I don’t see it getting better, you’re great, but I want to break up.  If we can be friends, that would be great.

Don’t expect it ... (continued - Click to keep reading Ask a Guy: How Do I Break-Up with My Boyfriend?)

37 comments… add one

Leave Your Comment Now...


I need help in a big way. I recently got a divorce after 12 years of marriage. I am the evil woman who ended it. He was controling and I was isolated from my friends and family for a good portion of that time. Well it seems my friends and family think I am a commitment type of person because I have been on so many dates my head is spinning. After awhile I am now in a relationship I am not sure I am ready for. It started out as groups functions and we were always paired together, eventaully he asked me on a date and I went. He asked me to go on a trip infront of my friends and I am a lucky girl (I dont feel lucky). I was in a bad relationship for 12 years for my sons sake. I married really young so I am not that old now but this guy is also younger than me. 5 dates and he is talking marriage and kids and a house in the suburbs. How did that happen? I am still on page one and he jumped to page 10000000 and has our kids named. I am enjoying being single. I have read a few things and want to try some unconventional things, this guy is very conventional. How do I let him know that he has to hit the breaks or the door? Every time I have tried to talk to him he looks like he is listening but a day later or two days later its back to overwhelming again. Like I said I married very young and have never really dated before. I dont want to have just finally gotten out of one bad relatioship to jump into another. Please how do I slow it down or end it?

Reply March 20, 2015, 4:01 pm


I have been with my boyfriend for nearly 2 years now,we have had a few bumps along the way and recently I have hit a road block. My boyfriend behaves very poorly a lot he chucks temper tantrums when he doesn’t get his way, he gives me death glares when I bring up something he doesn’t want to talk about, he can never communicate properly with me, and he rarely makes me happy anymore. I’ve tried numerous times to work things out with him, but I can’t expect him to change and I know its not right to try to however I can’t find it in my self to break things off, one reason for this is because he lives with me. We are both 18 and living in my mothers house until we move out, the reason he is there is because his father threw him out of the house. I don’t know what I would do about this, I don’t want to chuck him out on his ass but I don’t know how we would be towards each other if I ended things. Another reason is I’m worried no one else would ever love me, I never thought anyone would to begin with unitl my current boyfriend came along. I scared that if I end it with him I’ll be alone forever. My last reason is that i m worried what my friends will think and I know it should only matter what I think its just that we regularly hang out as a big group of 4 me and my bf and our friend and her bf (also a friend). I’m worried that our whole friendship could change due to this. I finding it hard to cope with how I feel and regularly cry because I can’t deal with it efffectivly. I appreciate any advice you can give me on this matter.

Reply March 12, 2015, 8:12 am


Thanks for your insight, Eric :) This was very helpful

Reply March 7, 2015, 9:34 am

amber nielsen

My boyfriend and I have been dating for 6 months, and i am truly in love with him but he is always talking to younger girls . ive told him how it makes me feel and all he does is tell me I’m too jealous. I have been thinking about breaking up with him but i know without him in my life I’ll break down. I dont know how to tell him how I feel without sounding too jealous.

Reply February 21, 2015, 10:44 am

Era sharma

i m in a relationship since 3 years,its a long distance relationship .we used to talk over phones regularly.He comes to meet me monthly..but it doesn’t work for me.after some months from my relationship i realised that i only liked him but don’t love him,but i don’t have the courage to say him that i don’t love him,he is really a gud guy.he always says that he loves me but what about me,i m not happy ,i had tried to breakup with him he used to call me regularly arguing to make solution and didn’t agreed for the breakup.he contacted my friends and asked for help,he behaved as he will spoil his life if i broke with him .so i had no way other than contacting him.but now i m really stressed nd confused what to do ,i m not responding his calls nd messages but again he is taking help of my friends for contacting me..please help me and reply me fast .

Reply February 16, 2015, 12:58 am


I been with my bf for 3yrs know, but i been feeling like im still in love with my ex for a yr now i been taking with him ones n a wild he also knows im with someone, but i been trying with my bf it justnot working for me i have two kids there not his or my ex i feel like he is trying to be to hard on them i dont agree how he treats them n that is causing alot of things n my head, he believes different to raise kids than i do, i want to end this but we also live together n im his first love so im afraid to hurt him n he well ask me so many questions but i just cant take it no more i cant go another yr like this please help me tell him

Reply January 6, 2015, 2:14 am

Aly Lilya

I’m a sophmore in a Christian college I’ve been dating this guy for three months who is a year younger than me. At first when we were friends we started getting along ok, now he’s starting to scare me telling me he wants me to marry him when he’s 20. Plus I’m not ready for that and wants me to go to his hometown in Oregon. I’m scared and afraid, I’m at a point where I don’t need him. I want to end things with him but I don’t know how and I’m scared. It’s like he’s holding me hostage and I want to be independent and do what I want to do. I’m really really scared and need help. What should I do?

Reply December 18, 2014, 3:02 am


I have been there & it has never been easy for very own bf doesn’t trust me at all he says that I am cheating on him while he is busy back together with his ex

Reply December 12, 2014, 4:57 pm


I have been there & it has never been easy for me

Reply December 12, 2014, 4:53 pm


Hey im 20 about to be 21 in less than 2 weeks, my bf is 20. Weve been together for 3 months, and hes changed. He was suave, caring, open, and mature, and clean the first month, but now hes stinky, immature, hes always groping, and ovwrlu clingy, he dorsnt share his feelings and he doesnt help with chores. Anytime i wanna discuss my feelings on our relationship and how i think we can improve he gets defensive and walks off like a 5yr old. Hes staying with me and im about to go outta town. I wanna break it off but he still owes rent. And i need that rent money b4 i get another notice. Help. I neef to break up with him and kick him out at the same time. But i dont wanna seem cruel. How do i do this?

Reply November 27, 2014, 11:50 pm


I am 20 years old and I have been dating this guy off and on for 2 years. We started out as fwb and it grew to more. Anyway he is driving me insane; he is 25 and only has a part time job while I am going to get my degree in biology. Also he acts like a 16 year old when I am around him I feel like I’m 30. He dropped out of community college BC he couldn’t get his butt up to go to his classes. He is so very lazy and I am not, it frustrates me to think if what a strain he is on his parents. When he didn’t have a job I paid for my half of a bill for a date or usually the whole thing. Now that he has a job and makes more than me and doesn’t pay for college he is still cheap. We went to a fair and he ate my food that I paid for, complained he had no money then bought himself a 60 dollar shirt that he might wear once a year. While I picked up small souvenirs for my family. He’s very childish and selfish. I have put up with it for a while and I broke up with him. He called crying and I couldn’t take the crying and gave him a second chance. But now he is very clingy shows up at my apartment randomly and doesn’t get the hint to leave( I have early classes) and he just keeps saying dumb things. He told me he enjoys the benefits he receives when he visits… Aka sex. I got angry because he always expects it and even when I say no he pushes till he gets his way. I was furious and he thought buying me something would make up for it. He also called me cold and too serious( premed student). He continually says and oies stupid things and I can’t stand him anymore he laughs like a little kid and in general has more in common with a teenager than me. If I try to break up with him he’ll throw a fit again. How can I do this and avoid the crying and the guilt BC I can’t stand crying?

Reply October 16, 2014, 9:25 am


Just do it honestly. It’s annoying and painful, but you’ll be so happy afterwards. Earlier this year, I was dating an 18 year old (I’m 15), and I was in a very similar situation. Ironically, he acted less mature than I (although, given, we are teenagers). Everything about him was almost burdening on my life. And yet, I loved him for some reason (or thought I did). When I broke up with him, he cried crocodile tears. I mean a choking, can barely breathe, sobbing cry. He spent an hour trying to convince me to stay with him, but I put my foot down. You have to consider your future and yourself.

Reply November 21, 2014, 9:46 am

tiegan klaasen

i’ve been dating this guy for about a month and a bit, his the nicest guy and he treats me right but for some reason in the last 2 weeks i cant stand being around him. He annoys me and always makes me pissed off.. there is also a another guy and i have had a thing for this guy for years and we have been talking alot lately.. and he asked me to be with him and i dont know what to do i dont want to hurt my boyfriend but i want to think of my happiness too… what should i do?

Reply August 6, 2014, 9:28 pm

Bree K

Wow this scenario is exactly how I am feeling right now with my boyfriend. We have been together for a little over a year. At first the relationship was great and I couldn’t have asked for anything better. As time went on though, that initial spark has faded away and I find myself wishing I was single again. I want to break up with him, but I don’t want to hurt him. He loves me so much and thinks the world of me. It would just crush him immensely. But at the same time I don’t want to drag the relationship out when I’m not in it 100%. That would be unfair to him and me. I just don’t know what to do.

Reply November 11, 2013, 3:33 pm

Norma Hdz

Yes, what you just said is so exactly what is happening to me. Ive been dating a guy for 6 months and what you just said explains my relationship so similarly. I am going to break up with him today and ive done a lot of research to how to do it properly. Ive found that: You should start by saying his positive traits but then get straight to the point of breaking up and why, wish him the best and dont let him convince you of staying the relationship. Be as gentle as you can be and look at him in the eye when you talk. Hope this helped.

Reply January 16, 2015, 7:34 am


I am confused

Reply September 10, 2013, 3:33 pm


You didn’t answer the question.

Reply June 28, 2013, 3:58 am


I apologize, I missed the second page. Thank you.

Reply June 28, 2013, 4:09 am


I met a great guy in 2010. Moved in with him in a house he owns. We vacationed together, bought furniture together, even got our beloved dog together. Then, in June 2012 he proposed! I was so happy and shocked, and then sad?! For months I ignored my feelings that I was in a boring relationship, it wasn’t bad, it wasn’t great, we did love each other but there was no spark. I felt like I was settling to live a life that would be good, but not great. So, recently, out of the blue really, all my feelings spilled out and I broke off our engagement. I came from a position of honesty, filled with grief. We had a great run, but it was time for a new chapter. Hands down the hardest thing I’ve had to do in my 30 years. If I hadn’t gained the courage to be honest, who knows what would have happened. So I share my story to say, breaking up is hard, but follow your gut and do not let yourself get as deep into the relationship as I did. Breaking hearts sucks hard core. Live life and be free!

Reply May 7, 2013, 1:54 pm


Wow that was exactly what I needed to hear. Thank you so much for your encouraging words! I

Reply February 16, 2014, 9:10 pm


Ok so me and my boyfriend dated for a good solid 3 months and then he broke up with me and I was heartbroken. Then he asked for me back and I said yes whenu shouldn’t have then I broke up with him and he hated me and we keep going on and off and I just want to be done with it. I hate how I say yes every time but my friend got us back together because she thinks we belong together. I want to break up with him ur we just got back together an I want us to be done… He’s a good guy but I feel we just need to end it. I don’t know but this time it’s hard and I keep putting it off because I afraid that he will hate me and then all my friend will hate me because I broke up with him… And I hate to say this but I like someone else and I just really need some advice on what to do please.

Reply March 7, 2013, 12:31 am


Hello, I’ve been dating this guy for 1 year and 6 months. Everything was going fine. We both made our mistakes and had trust issues. We’ve both been pretty paranoid and argued constantly. A couple months ago , we found God, forgave each other, and our relationship was perfect. Now, we argue almost every day and there’s always threats of a break up (and we’ve broken up plenty of times and gotten back together). I’m losing feelings for him, I’m not as attracted as I used to be, he’s too clingy and desperate, and we’re drifting apart. My relationship with my father has been completely destroyed ever since I’ve been with my boyfriend. Also, I’m not the as close with my mother as much as I used to be either. She and I argue a lot and we’re both pretty stubborn people so it can get bad. My relationship with the rest of my family isn’t that great either. It’s like we’ve been distanced ever since I’ve been with my boyfriend. Can someone please help me on how to break up with him?

Reply January 7, 2013, 1:48 am


Omg! Thanks sooo much! My boyfriend and I have been dating for a month now and the feelings I had for him have been fading away but he hasn’t done anything wrong. I’ve gotten the courage to break up with him and hope it goes well using your advice!

Reply December 26, 2012, 2:53 pm


So ive been with this Guy Tony for about 61/2 months now, its like he was really sweet at first and we got along so good! My whole family likes him and says it seems like I’m so happy with him, and I was, he made me feel so important(I’m crying just typing this lol) exactly last week I broke up with him because I started liking this other Guy Cody, him and I have a LOT in common and everyone asks “are you guys dating” or says “you guys would make such a cute couple”‘ Tony has been really upset at school and stuff because we broke up, now this other Guy Cody, he has been helping me through this break up and has been very sweet and I know I shouldn’t have done this but we kinda have a thing together, I feel like we have so much in common and he’s really nice and sweet to me but I don’t know if he would be like Tony, Tony actually loved me and has been faithful, he is the type of relationship that I want but with a different person. Also I want a relationship where I can go to his house and meet his family and stuff, with Tony that happens but with Cody it wouldnt Help me please!!!!

Reply December 19, 2012, 2:24 pm


i have a boyfriend and he constently is folling me me kissing me and giviing me hugs it gets anoying

Reply November 29, 2012, 2:50 pm

Brooke Brown

Well there is this boy that I am with and we have only been going out for a month and I am not into him anymore… For one thing he is older but not that much older, the second thing is that he lives in new York and I live in Texas, third we barely even know eachother and lastly he is head over heels about me and I’m not into him anymore and he is really nice and all but I never stopped loving my ex and I just don’t know how to break up with my boyfriend I have now… I don’t want to break his heart but I am not in love with him anymore… How should I break up with him and still be friends if that is even possible… I just can’t live with me not being happy with my relation-ship… And he hasn’t texted me in weeks when I never did anything to him I just want to be happy with my life and not be with someone I don’t love anymore. Please help me.

Reply October 15, 2012, 8:53 pm


Hey, I have a problem. Obviously or else I wouldn’t be here posting a comment. Back on track tho, I really like my boyfriend and every single one of his friends tell me that he’s insecure about himself and that ( oh by the way we’ve been dating for five weeks and he’s super duper shy around me ) that’s the reasone that he doesn’t want to say to much because he’s afraid ill jump to the dump. And I’ve heard from all of my friends that he’s so diffrent around me. It makes me really sad that he doesn’t feel confterble around me. I just want him to be himself around me and I’ve told him before that I really want to get to know him for him but nothing will change.. All my friends keep telling me adorable stories about him and then once he sees me he just shuts down and just holds my hand. I’ve even dropped some hints to his friends to tell him that he can be himself around me but nothing changes. And not to be a total ass about it but I’m starting to get jelouse of my friends.. Specificaly my best friend.. Since we’re both in high school we don’t spend much time ( only at lunch and after swim practice) together. But priscilla spends most of her time with him. And he’s him around her.. And then there are those small things when they arew around me because ( I know this sounds like I’m ranting of at shadows but its just a fealing..) She told one of my friends that she had had a crush on him and my other friend told me, and now when ever I see her I feel so sad because ( I know what she’s doing) she hitting on him and I think he’s actually hitting on her too.. But his friend chris told me that he liked me so much that I shouldn’t break up with him cus of ( he said small) small thing.. I don’t want to loose my best friend.. But I don’t want her showing of her titts to my boyfriend. Should I break up with him ( before you say that I should talk to him about it, I have and again we have noo change) or should I trust him and gamble my emotions and possibly my friendship with my best bud?

Reply October 15, 2012, 4:43 am


So I have been dating my boyfriend for over 2 years and I don’t know what happen I just finished texting him and poof I didn’t have feeling for him.I have brooken up with him before but he he begged for me so I gave him a nother chance and we had a good time intil now. At school there are roomers going on the he has been cheeting on me. I talked to him about it and he said he new nothing about it. Oh and I invited him to my birthday party and he did nothing but hangout with my little brother and shoot me with a nerf gun. Aslo is is really mean to some of my good friends. Like he used to throw things at one of my good friends. But any pleases help me this is my first real breakup

Reply July 19, 2012, 3:27 am

Far Away.

So I’ve been dating my boyfriend for about 10 months now, and it’s a long distance relationship for us, because we go to the different schools, etc. Lately, I’ve been thinking of breaking up with him, but I feel semi-guilty because he’s a great guy and everything, the kind of guy that all the girls want to date. But then I have no idea how to go and break up with him. I have good reasons why I should break up with him too, like how we barely see each other, and he never visits me. I always end up visiting him; he should at least visit me once, right? Anyways, plus I just don’t feel the way I used to feel about him like before. Plus, there’s this other guy that I’m starting to like; even my bestfriend says that how me and the other guy act is like we’re already actually going out and I really like him too, and I get to see him more. So how would I break up with my current boyfriend, and actually be with someone that I can always see and feel happy with?

Please answer me, ASAP.

Reply July 4, 2012, 5:48 pm


I like it, it works but that depends on the other guy too..what if he does anything to make you feel bad and end up “stuck” with him again?

Reply June 17, 2012, 3:39 pm


Dear Eric, thank you so much for responding to this question so thoughtfully. Reading your answer made me tear up because I am currently in the same situation and looking for a way to break up. How expressed your experience is exactly like mine and I guess I would feel like a failure as well if it ended.
Thank you for giving me the courage to break up and not hurt him as much.

Reply May 9, 2012, 3:38 pm


Please help me! I am dating this guy and he is nice and every thing but he is going really over board and becoming really clingy! Help me please how do i do this and go but to being just friends! :( PLEASE HELP!

Reply May 6, 2012, 7:23 am


well, thats the same thing that happend to me… what i did is i just told him.. “ummm, im feeling really pressured about this, maybe we should take a brake for a bit”…. but i think you should either write it to him or get a friend to be there with you when you do it, cause it might get awkweird and he could ask questions, your friend could pull you away so you dont have to answer them. Worked for me, and him and I are really close now ;)

Reply June 13, 2012, 8:05 pm


Well my boyfriend and I have been dating for about 15 months now and we fight here and there because i’m a cancer so I’m constantly emotional wheather I choose to be or not. And he always understands but often thinks i’m too emotional. But today I found out he did stuff with another girl months ago. We were fighting before he left to go out of town and he says he was done with the relationship but we never officially broken up. He also says that she gave him attention that he wanted from me instead of fighting. So he hung out with her when he came back and he said it just happened. Another time I broke up with him for being really clingy and I hung out with another boy and he kissed me but I felt guilty for it, though it was months ago. Should I break up with him over this? When he saw it as us not being together? Or should I give him another try?

Reply May 1, 2012, 3:04 pm


I’ve just starting going out with this dude! But now I don’t want to because….. He’s really clingy… how do I tell him I don’t want to go out anymore but still want to be friends??

HELP ME!!!!!!!!

Reply February 25, 2012, 11:43 pm

Amanda believe the story he’s telling is about, and it does seem like controlling tendencies to me (sorry)..because my boyfriend is the same way. I not only think he’s cheating, like in another topic here..but like this topic, I think he also committed himself to a relationship with me that he’s not 100% into in the first place..and I desperately need to break it off with him. This will be the 2nd time I’ve had to do this. You know the saying..1st time shame on him..2nd time shame on me. All the same patterns have started to form in a downward spiral. I am so disappointed. But it cannot be ignored. With all of that being said, it’s still going to be incredibly hard to break it off because we are friends too..almost best friends, and I will miss him terribly. But because of his controlling nature, we cannot be friends again until maybe much much later, because he comes right back after me and won’t leave me alone. He did change his appearance after I suggested that some other clothing he had was very attractive, he does introduce new things in bed (but we both do that), he did just start to suggest a night out each month with other friends 9and not just guys), however he does kiss me in public and flirt with me still..but he’s a drinker with deep seeded emotions from his past. He cannot control himself when he drinks when I’m not there. So I have no idea what he’s doing..and he then says or does things to get himself into trouble afterwords.

I practically live with him..but he will not move me in after 2 years together. He will not give me a key. He gave me one once..and then took it back. He likes that his front door squeaks and will not fix it because he says that way he can tell if someone is coming in. Random mysterious occurrences keep popping up lately..and he keeps brushing them off like nothing or telling me that people are trying to fill my head full of bs. He’s starting to become nasty with me. And my past..I think Eric forgot to mention this one very important point that if a man suddenly has a change in his usually nice behavior towards you and starts to act nasty to you all of a sudden all of the time…HUGE WARNING SIGN. You need to get out of that relationship for sure. Because he’s not only not in to you anymore..but he has already made a b-line to move onto someone else or multiple someones (cheating) all the while still trying to keep you around because he doesn’t want “ever” to be alone..and you’re a safe bet (kinda like a mother to come home to while he’s been out playing). However, you still should be nice and caring about your breakup, because you do not want to degrade yourself in the end..and in addition, if the person is a don’t want any future trouble from him. Be safe. And then go on and find someone who loves you and wants to treat you nice.

I’m really sad that I’m at a point where I actually even had to come to a site like this. It’s really over. ?

Reply June 22, 2011, 12:38 pm


sometimes I think people mistake clingyness and neediness for controlling tendancies or the other way around. This girls boyfriend scares me. I wouldn’t even be his friend. He’ll see everything you do!

Reply June 7, 2010, 1:36 pm

Leave a Comment

Recent Relationship Forum Activity


Sign up for our
free newsletter
and get a free chapter
of our book,"He's Not
That Complicated"