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What is the gentlest way to end a dating relationship?

Young couple seated next to each other at an outdoor cafe, having a tense conversation.

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What is the gentlest way to end a dating relationship?

July 29, 2013

Q: I've been dating this woman (we're both 25) for nearly 2 months now; we've had at least 20 dates. How can I break up with her in the most polite and non-hurtful way possible? I've been confused as to why things have gone at snail speed physically, which I expressed to her. She said she could see us together in the long run, but my patience has run thin. I'm extremely sexually frustrated but have restrained myself like a saint. I've decided this is not for me.

A: The first thing I want you to do is to think about how you feel about her as a person. I want you to look at all the qualities she has and not think of the physical part. I want you to really think about how you feel about her and if you see each other in the future. Right now she is taking her time because she wants to get to know you. She is not rushing things because she is establishing a relationship first.

Sometimes girls wait because they don't want the person to think of them in a certain way. Perhaps she is waiting because she does not want to lose you and feels that she might if she is intimate. She might have insecurities about sex. I feel she needs to be reassured in the relationship. I think she thinks if she is intimate you are going to leave. Women often have a certain view on intimacy where they feel a guy will not stay if they are intimate right away and that they will view them differently. They feel sex changes things. This is why I want you to take the intimacy out of it and think about your attraction to her.

If you feel there is nothing there, then this is how you may want to break things off in a nice way:

"When I see us in the future I feel like there is something missing, and I need more. I do not want to hurt you in anyway, but I just feel this relationship is moving way too slowly. I have feelings for you, but I feel like you are just not comfortable enough around me to make the next step. I need to be intimate with you because I feel the need to be close to you, but I just feel at this point you are pushing me away. It's been a month and a half and I thought we would be further along together. Don't think for a minute I do not care about you, but I feel this type of relationship is just not for me."

That is what I would tell her, because you want to be honest with her so she doesn't always wonder what happened. If you want to stay, maybe that will help things change if you tell her how you feel.

-- Answer from Debra Hammond, a relationships advice columnist on JustAnswer.

 

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