There is no happy way to end a relationship, but if you can bring yourself to be direct, decisive and as kind as you think you can bear then you will stand a better chance of getting away with your dignity intact. Always meet up with your
(soon-to-be-ex-) partner; email and text are a savage and brutal mode of relationship torture. Once face-to-face, do not let a hint of ambiguity weaken your case; it only looks like a chink in the armour to the desperate. Likewise, avoid being simply too nice – murmuring asinine clichés like “It’s not you, it’s me,” will simply ensnare you in the sticky web of your own cloying half-truths. It is much better to be honest and merely regretful. Above all, don’t spin out the conversation too long – the humiliation of a break-up is in its seemingly endless and protracted trotting-out of meaningless clichés.
Rejection can often have a physical effect: not just those treacherous tears but a shivery unsteadiness. Another relationship will seem unimaginably distant. The first thing to do is to write a list of your ex’s shortcomings. Soon the list will fade into irrevelance, as your memory of the pain of the break-up diminishes. You know you have finally moved on when you find your own misery boring. Then the relationship has truly ended – for both of you.

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