You may have started to think about the future and what you want from your relationships. But if you’re still carrying around the emotional baggage of a former relationship, it can be difficult to stop living in the past.
Relationships can have a pull on us long after they’re over. It can be difficult to accept that something that was once a really big part of your life is now becoming a memory. Likewise, unresolved issues can make it difficult to accept that the relationship has ended at all.
Clients often tell our counsellors that they feel stuck going over and over what happened in their last relationship and that makes it feel impossible to move on. It’s also a lot harder now to disconnect yourself from painful reminders of the past: simply logging on to Facebook and seeing updates or photos of an ex can leave you heartbroken all over again.
However, there comes a time when we need to accept that what’s done is done and begin to look forward to what might be coming next.
The cycle of emotions you go through following a breakup can be similar to those you would go through following bereavement. You’re likely to experience feelings of denial, anger, emptiness, and sadness. This is all completely normal and you may even find yourself revisiting some of these emotions several times.
Some clients tell us they worry that they aren’t dealing with a breakup as they should be or that friends or family expect them to snap out of it. The truth is, how someone responds to the end of a relationship is different for each of us: there’s no right or wrong way to do it. The important thing is that you give yourself the time and support you need to feel better.
Relationship Counselling can help you talk over your thoughts with someone who doesn’t know you or your ex and won’t judge anything you say. We’re here to help you sort through how you’re feeling and work out what you want to happen next.
One of the hardest things to let go of following the end of a relationship is anger.
It can be easy to stuck in the ‘blame game’ – endlessly questioning who did what, what could have been done differently and who ended up feeling worse. But this kind of thinking will only make you feel bitter, regretful and has a tendency to go in circles.
Although it isn’t always easy, it’s much more useful to focus objectively on what the relationship was lacking and how it failed to meet your or your partner’s needs. It isn’t about deciding who was right and who was wrong, but being realistic about what happened and why.
Think about the warning signs that you may have ignored. Think about the things that caused arguments – not just who caused them. And, crucially, try to understand your part in what happened.
Although the answers to these might be upsetting, they will make it easier to let go of the past and avoid making the same mistakes in the future.
Coming to terms with the end of a relationship is a very freeing experience. It means you’re no longer fighting to keep things alive or struggling to understand what happened.
This new found sense of freedom will come with a surge of positive emotions – potentially even greater levels of energy – and it will allow you to make plans for what you’re going to do next.
As you enter this new stage, you may find the following tips useful:
1. Love means never having to say we’re sorry. I’m certainly not sorry that we met and fell for each other. It was a wonderful time, but all good things come to an end, and this is it for me.
2. You have been a great boyfriend, but I need to end things. It’s better for us both if we break up.
3. I think you know that things have been hard. Let’s break up so we can remain friends.
4. Life will go on even when we are no longer together. I’m sorry this has to end. Good luck.
5. You are a wonderful human being. You deserve someone who can give you the time and attention that I can’t because of my commitments. She’s out there; go find her. I won’t stop you anymore.
6. I’ve realized that I don’t love you anymore. I don’t want to lie to you, because you deserve to be treated with respect. I know you will find someone who will treat you better. But I just can’t do it. I’m sorry. Goodbye.
7. I wanted to love, and I honestly was trying my best to love you like you love me. But I just can’t lie to myself anymore. We can’t be together, it just doesn’t seem right. You are a wonderful person, and I know you will eventually find someone who will be just right for you.
8. You know how much I’ve loved you over the past years, but the way things have become, it is impossible for me to stay with you. I’m sorry and I hope that you can one day forgive me. Goodbye.
9. I like spending time with you. But it’s not enough. You deserve to be with someone who loves and appreciates you. I just can’t give that to you. It’s time for us to say goodbye to each other and move on.
10. They say that, in a breakup, it is never only one person’s fault. And especially in our case, we are both to blame. Even though we tried our best, we just couldn’t make it work. This is why I think it is better for us to end here on a peaceful note, while we still can. I’m sorry, but this is goodbye.
11. I’ve realized that there’s more to me than loving you. I got so used to being your other half, and I completely forgot that I needed to be myself in the first place. I’m sorry, but we can’t see each other anymore.
12. I don’t know if this is for the best, but I feel this relationship asphyxiating. This is why I want to end this. It’s not you, it’s me, but I feel like I cannot deal with all this stress anymore. I’m sorry, but goodbye.
13. We’ve had a great time. But I just don’t feel like we belong together. Love doesn’t live in this relationship anymore. It’s hard to admit that, but we need to say goodbye to each other to live happily ever after.
14. We can’t save something that has already died. The only thing we can do is to let it go. Our love has died and it’s time to admit it and take another step. I want to be happy and I wish you happiness too, but it will never happen as long as we are together. That’s why we should break up. I’m really sorry.
15. This is as hard for me as it is for you, but the time has come to say goodbye. It was fun while it lasted, and I will always look back on our relationship with a smile, but the time has come for both of us to move on. Please forgive me, goodbye.
16. I have made up my mind. I want this to end. When you ever feel alone in the future, just think why were you unable to maintain this relationship. And if you do, I’d be happy to try this again. But for now, goodbye.
17. I still love you. And that makes it even harder. Although I still have so much love for you, I just don’t feel happy with you anymore. Let’s not look for someone to blame. This is life. Wishing you all of the best.
18. I’ve tried countless times to set things straight, but every time I try to compromise and take one step back, you take three steps forward. Thus, I’m sorry, but this is the end. Goodbye.
19. They say if you love someone, set this person free. I love you, darling, and I want you to be truly happy with someone who’s better than me. I know that I made you suffer a lot and I want it to stop. Please, be happy without me.
20. When you kiss me, I feel like I don’t want to kiss you back. When you hug me, I can’t wrap my arms around you with the same tenderness that you have for me. When you say you love me, it’s so hard for me to say I love you too. I’m sorry, but I’m not the one you need.
21. Tbh it was fun hanging out together, but I don’t think we are meant to be a couple.
22. I haven’t been in touch because I think that continuing this relationship isn’t going to do either of us any good as, in my eyes, it has no future. I think it’s time to call it a day.
23. I’m sorry I couldn’t break up with you face-to-face. I just think that if I did, I would get all emotional and wouldn’t be able to say this to you. I don’t consider our relationship a failure, but it was definitely not a success. This is why it’s better for us to end this now, while we still have the chance to do it peacefully. Goodbye.
24. We never know what will happen tomorrow. There are so many paths we can choose and sometimes we can’t predict where they will lead us. Unfortunately, our path has led us to a dead end. And it means that we have to separate and walk different roads.
25. We shouldn’t regret things that come to an end. Because every relationship in our life brings something new. Every person we meet changes us and makes us rethink many things. Every breakup teaches us to overcome the most tragic moments. Thank you for the experience you gave me. You made me a better and stronger person.
26. Our first date, the first time we kissed, every single message that you sent to me, I‘m keeping in my heart. And every single word that you’ve said to me, touches my soul. Although we cannot be together, you will always be a special person to me.
27. I’m sending you this breakup message to tell you I’m breaking up with you. I thought this might be easier than doing it face-to-face as an emotional scene is the last thing either of us needs.
28. You’ve been moving way too fast with this relationship since it started. I don’t think we’re on the same page at all. I don’t like doing this text breakup, but I think it’s time we face the truth.
29. I’ve enjoyed getting to know you, and I feel like while we can be good friends, a relationship isn’t on the cards for us. I just want to be honest now, so you don’t feel led on.
1. I’m so tired of our fights. I have a heart, and you broke it into million little pieces. I’m not going to pretend like nothing is wrong. It’s goodbye.
2. When we first met, I felt a fire burning inside of me that made me want you with every inch of my body. Yet your actions have made this fire burn less and less, and has now reached a point where it has completely vanished. So, I think this is time to say goodbye. It’s not that I don’t love you, but until you learn how to treat a person properly, I’m afraid I can’t be with you. Goodbye.
3. You said you would never lie to me, or do anything to hurt me, but you have proved yourself wrong in both of these statements. No matter how much I want this to work, I cannot continue being with someone that does not care about me, or even worse, that has lied about doing so. Goodbye.
4. You promised to never make me cry for as long as we’re together, but all I have done for the longest time while being with you is cry. Therefore, this is the last time I allow myself to cry over you, and I draw a line here by saying goodbye. I would say I’m sorry, but I’m truly not, because I know that you aren’t.
5. What hurts me the most is not how bad you made me feel now, but how your attitude contradicts so much with all the things you’ve promised to me. This is why, I’m sorry, but I have to go. Goodbye.
6. I have loved you with all my heart, but apparently, my heart is not big enough to tolerate this toxic relationship. So, goodbye.
7. It is the hardest thing I’ve ever done. But sometimes you have to let someone you love go. I know it’s best for us. I know we’ve had enough. Maybe someday our roads will cross, but now we need to say goodbye to each other.
8. I’m losing my best friend. My lover, my protector. I can’t bear to look at you slowly disappearing in your lovelessness. I wish you the best of all this world can give and hope that you will find someone who can make you happy. I’m sorry it’s not me.
9. I’ve tried so hard to make you see that I’m running out of love for you. You just stopped noticing me. And I can’t spend my life with someone who doesn’t want to see me and listen to me. This is goodbye.
10. While it is sad to see you go, it’s even worse for you to be here and not care about me at all. So I’m afraid that this is goodbye.