How to break up with your girlfriend or boyfriend

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If you’ve decided to break up with your boyfriend or girlfriend, you’re probably wondering how to tell him/her. Here are some Do’s and Don’ts to make sure things go as well as possible.

As the song says, breaking up is hard to do. The important thing is to find a way to do it that shows respect and understanding for the other person. There are things you should do… and things you definitely shouldn’t do!



  • If your relationship is healthy, it’s best to announce your decision in person rather than on the phone or by text. It will be easier for the other person if you’re there to witness his/her reactions and explain your reasons.
  • Take your time and be open to discussion.
  • Explain your decision clearly and precisely.
  • Be direct without being hurtful. Talk about yourself and your feelings and use “I.”
  • Stay firm about your decision, even if the other person is angry, disappointed, or sad. His/her reactions are his/her business.



  • Accusing or blaming the other person does no good and risks making the conflict worse.
  • Belittling the whole relationship is unfair and hurts the other person. Even if things aren’t working between you anymore, remember that you’ve had some good times together.
  • Remember that vengeance is useless. You may be feeling lots of grief or anger, but you don’t have the right to wreck the other person’s life. Focus on yourself and your own happiness, and move on.
  • A present is a present. Don’t give back the other person’s gifts to you or ask for the presents you gave him/her back.


These tips should help you go through the breakup more easily. Nevertheless, a breakup can trigger strong or unpredictable reactions in the other person. 


Is it possible for me and my ex to be friends?

Staying friends with an ex is possible, but not for everybody. 👫👭👬 It depends on your personality and on your ex’s: some people can do it, and others can’t. If you still love each other or one of you still loves the other one, it can be very complicated, even impossible, to be just friends. In general, it’s easier to recreate a friendship when both people accept that it’s over and have gotten over their heartbreak.


My ex is in a dark place. What should I do?

If your ex has dark thoughts, you can encourage him/her to get professional help. Here is some advice to help you.


Listen to your ex and tell him/her that you can tell he/she is suffering and you’re worried about it. 😟


Encourage your ex to seek help. You could say, for example: Based on what you’re telling me, I think it’s important to find some help for you. What would you say if we talked to…?


You can tell your ex about the benefits he/she would get from talking to a professional and explain that you’re probably not the best person to help him/her at that point.


If you think your ex’s life might be in danger, the situation’s too difficult for you, or something is making you anxious, quickly call Tel-jeunes or another resource.  


Don’t take the whole burden on your shoulders. Remember that you’re a friend, not a therapist! If you feel nervous, talk to an adult you trust or call us.