How To Breakup With Someone You Were Never Actually Dating

Everyone deserves closure.


We have all been in a situation where the time has come to end a relationship but it’s harder to do when you're not really dating in the first place. I have been the one that’s been dumped by men I didn’t realize I was ‘dating’ but at least it gave me closure with that person. 

Here’s a list of advice for how to break up with someone your not really dating. 

Face to Face

Breaking up face to face can be difficult but if you have been ‘dating’ this person for a few months exclusively then there is no better way to do it. 

Giving them this type of closure helps to stop them from going through a period of self-doubt and constantly wondering ‘what is wrong with me?’ type thinking. By meeting them face to face you show that the relationship was important to you, and it stops them from feeling undervalued in time when they are vulnerable.

By Phone or Text

It’s not always a bad thing to break up with someone via phone or texting and in some circumstances, it’s the best way forward. But before you reach for that phone you should consider how you would feel if someone broke up with you by text. Just because you were only casually dating doesn’t mean they don’t deserve an in-person breakup. 

As someone who has been dumped over text, it definitely hurts but I honestly don’t know it would have hurt any less if he had done it in person. 

It’s more about how intense your relationship was than how long it went on for. If you spent a lot of time together having deep conversations and sharing a lot of personal stuff then a face to face breakup is probably more considerate. That said if you still feel that texting or phoning is the best way to go then don’t be scared to do it.

Remember their feelings

While you may not consider that you are in a relationship they may believe you are so it is important to show that you valued them but that the two of you just weren’t a good fit. It is worthwhile being honest in how you approach the breakup so that the other person is able to get the closure they need. 

If you are wondering what to say then try something like this: “ I’ve enjoyed spending time with you, but I have realized it is not what I want. I care about you and wanted to let you know so that we can both move on.” 

This allows them to feel like you really care about their feelings and by taking the time to explain why you don’t want to continue ‘dating’ they get the closure they need to move on. 

Be direct 

Directness can help in breakup especially one like this where the stakes are considerably lower. There is less pressure on both sides to navigate tricky emotions so don’t be afraid to tell someone that’s it just not working out. While you should be direct you should also be kind so that the other person still feels respected. There is no need to remind them that this wasn’t a real relationship, to begin with just let them know that it is over. The dating may have been ambiguous but the breakup should not be for both your sakes. Kindness is important but you need to make your self clear that you do not want to see them anymore. 

Breaking up with someone is always going to be difficult and trying to break up with someone your not really daring can feel like a minefield. You just have to be decisive in how you do whether that be IRL or by phone sometimes you just have to tip the bandaid off. Just because your ‘not dating’ doesn’t mean that you can expect no breakups to happen but it’s up to you to make it as painless as possible. 


Next up, Achieving Closure In A World Of Ghosting