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When and how should I break-up with my long distance relationship girlfriend?


dg9159
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So I will write my three questions here first, just in case you don't feel like reading the paragraphs below. However, I believe reading them would be best as you would understand the situation better and can hopefully give me better advice.

  1. 1) How should I initiate the break-up?
  2. 2) How can I do it without hurting her so much? (I understand that the break-up itself will cause pain to the both of us, but I want to minimize it for her)
  3. 3) What can I do to feel less anxious and guilty about wanting to break up?
  4. 4) I have doubts about the break-up, am I doing the right thing? (This question requires that you read the paragraphs below so if you don't feel like reading them then there's no need to answer this question).

 

 

I am 22 years old and my girlfriend is 20 years old, and we have been together for about 1 year 5 months. We spent 6 months dating normally, and then I left for my master's degree and we've been doing LDR for almost a year. Unfortunately, I have been unhappy for months (and so has my girlfriend, although maybe not for the same reasons) but none of us ever wanted to (or had the courage to) break-up. Basically one of us visits the other for a couple of days (less than a week) every 2-3 months, and every time around 2-3 weeks before the visit we are both feeling miserable, however we say to each other "lets wait now and see how we feel after". This results in us being happy for those days that we meet, then the 1st 3-4 weeks are "fine" and we start to get sad again. It has reached a point where I have been sad every day (sometimes all day) for about 3 months now, I feel emotionally and physically exhausted and all of this while trying to juggle a very intensive masters degree. Now, I care for this girl but I really can't take the pain anymore and sometimes I wish I were dead just so I would be able to get a moment of peace and not feel constant sadness. Like I said she has also felt sad at times (and once had a break-down in front of me were she started to cry and just tell me she doesn't see how she can do this anymore) but after a while she says she wants to keep trying (even though I can see she isn't really happy). She has mentioned breaking up numerous times but she always says "If this relationship isn't good for you then we should end it" and I can see that she isn't happy in this relationship either so I don't know if she's trying to give me a hint to end things. It saddens me because she's a very kind hearted girl and when we are together we're happy, however there are underlying issues which we both know of and never really addressed (I regret this but the past is in the past and now I need to focus on the present and future).

 

As I said I am doing my masters degree abroad and after finishing this degree I would like to work for a couple of years in the country that I am residing in because I like the place and I can also make good money while still young. My girlfriend on the other hand did not or rather does not (I will explain soon) want to move to another country and live there, and if she does it would be for a very short time as a "working holiday". I said "did not" and then "does not" because before I left she told me how she's not interested in moving away. For this reason I broke up with her back then but we kept in touch (which I kind of regret because not talking to each other would have avoided us all this pain, but like I said I must focus on the present and future) and eventually got back together. When I was abroad she suddenly started to warm up to the idea of moving here with me, but still for a short term (a year or 2 maximum) BUT she also asked (screamed at me) if I would be willing to go back home with her if she got homesick as she doesn't want to be the only one to make a sacrifice (so at this point I saw that she doesn't really want to move here. She sees moving as a sacrifice, whereas I broke up with her as I understood she doesn't want this but I REALLY do and I've wanted it for years). So for this reason deep down I believe that she doesn't really want to move here. Personally, I want to study hard, work hard, and live abroad. I want to be able to really enjoy the world while I she doesn't really want this type of life. When discussing these things she gave me the idea that she doesn't care for that type of life and would rather have a "simpler" life back home, settled down and have a family. These are things I know I will want eventually but at this moment in life I would rather explore and discover.

 

Of course, it's not just her or us, but there are also problems with "me". I often find myself fantasizing about being with other women, either the cute girl at school or the hot woman that just passed by me on the street etc. I can't help these feelings but I've never acted on them and wouldn't dream of it as the last thing I want to do is hurt her in this way. Plus also I don't want to be that type of person. However this confuses me more, I care for her but I also have an urge to sleep with these other women. Also, I've been honest with her and told her that even if she could move this year I don't feel that comfortable with making this huge step in the relationship right now. So I feel as if I want her and it saddens me to think that a break-up would mean that we probably won't see or talk to each other and we wouldn't share good times together but at the same time I'm not that ready to commit so much. We've grown attached to each other and when I think about breaking up I just get a lot of anxiety. I don't know how I should start the conversation and how I should react as the thought of making her that sad just makes me feel sick in my stomach. The first time we broke up she started to get palpitations and she couldn't stop crying, and that image is still stuck in my head. But I also know I can't live by this as like I said I'm sad everyday. I get doubts and think to myself that this girl loves me and I want to break-up with her, and that I might never get to meet someone and be in a loving and happy relationship. I know I'm still young and this is unlikely, and I'm not trying to make you feel sorry for me, I'm just trying to write all that which I'm feeling right now cause I feel like I need help. Like I said, she knows I'm unhappy and I'm not trying to string her along or anything of the sort.

 

P.S. It's my 2nd LDR as I broke up the 1st one as I was unhappy and back then I also faced similar struggles with wanting to break up, however I wasn't as attached to that girl as I am to this one. After breaking up I immediately felt better and sometimes I think that it might be the case here but I really don't know cause I feel like my emotions are all over the place.

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Well, you know what you have to do. It sounds like both of you have arrived at the same conclusion and continuing this relationship is causing you a lot more sadness than just simply ending it. Whether you get sick to your stomach or she gets palpitations, it will be a lot worse if you keep stretching this out forever.

 

So you need to write a short message saying that you both agree that this relationship is hurting you and that you are ending the relationship. Tell her it's been great, but it's best for the both of you.

 

Now, here's the difficult part. You have to go total No Contact! If you both continue to send long, soulful, sad messages back and forth to each other, you will just feel worse and worse. It's like ripping a Band-Aid off quickly versus slowly peeling it off. It's best to just rip if off, take the hurt, and it goes away quickly. You have to not communicate at all with each other. Maybe you can contact each other in a few years when you've both moved on, but not now.

 

When you break up with her, you give her the opportunity to write back to you to tell you how sad she is. And then you tell her that it is best that you no longer contact her and she should not try to contact you. That you are removing, deleting and blocking her from your e-mail, texting and social media. She will be all right, and a tremendous weight will have been lifted from both of your shoulders. She can go on with her life and you can with her. Don't let her emotionally blackmail you to come back. Stay the course. Tell her you've found another girl, if it will make it easier for her. But end it. And end it now.

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Well, no one here can make the decision for you so whilst I hope the advice was give is helpful, ultimately you need to do what's right for you.

 

Funnily enough, I happen to know a couple going through something similar. They both live in different countries, and it caused a lot of stress in the relationship to the point it almost ended, but eventually it was decided upon that the one would move to the other's country to get a job and hopefully move in together.

 

Basically, there was a compromise. The one was willing to move country and establish a career / living situation. In your case, although your girlfriend is open to moving over, she's only wanting it to be short-term, which means either she needs to change her mind and accept being there for longer, or you need to reconsider your position on how long you wish to remain at this location.

 

If a compromise can't be made, then unfortunately this relationship is dead in the water. LDR's can survive and I'm an advocate of at least trying to survive them, but there has to be an end point, and there's no end point in sight here. If no compromise is made then eventually she move back home, and the cycle will repeat itself again. Then you'll both be unhappy, arguing, questioning the relationship etc.

 

From the sounds of it, you're trying to the relationship afloat when it's already destined to sink. Neither of you want to end it because you've invested a year and five months into being together, and you also care for one another deeply. It's not easy to end something like that, not deal with the emotional repercussions of doing so. Thus, you're at a stalemate, neither of you willing to act but neither of you wanting to be stuck in this rut.

 

So, in the absence of any change in circumstances to reach a compromise, I would advise ending it. It'll only get more stressful for you both, and the longer it goes on for the more unhappy you'll be, and the more hurt you'll be when it finally does end. Plus, the thoughts of other women don't help and leads to me thinking that maybe you need to date around a bit more to fully understand what it is you want in a partner.

 

I hope that helps. Not a happy ending for your relationship, but hopefully it gives you the opportunity to reach a happy ending as individuals.

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Oh, man - I have been here and it really stinks. My last relationship was long-distance and ended for very similar reasons. We loved each other, but we were miserable, and would have had to be long-distance for another whole year. Sometimes it's just better to end it when the pain gets to an unbearable level. If you were 100% certain and committed to spending the rest of your life with this woman, it would be one thing, but it doesn't sound like that's how you are feeling right now. There isn't a lot you can do to reduce your guilt, other than to remind yourself that breaking up with someone because a relationship isn't working does not make you a bad person and does not mean you don't/didn't love her.

 

Based on how infrequently you see each other in person, and the potential cost of traveling, I would suggest ending it via video phone call. Then, take at least six months where you do not speak at all, so the two of you can grieve the relationship and move on. Don't start dating right away, but exercise your freedom. You guys are in your early 20's, and there's no point in tying yourself down right now. Good luck, and I'm sorry for your loss.

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As the others have said, you know what you need to do.

 

Not only are you both very unhappy in this situation, you also very incompatible future goals. End it kindly, but don't keep in contact for a good, long while. You both need time away from each other so you can detach and recover.

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Keep it clean and simple and sincere and honest but diplomatic. Tell her that the distance is stressful and you feel you can't do it anymore. Do not allow it to derail if she starts accusing you of anything, like cheating, never loving her etc etc which are common reactions in LDR breakups.

 

Then make a clean break with no negotiating, guilt trips, bargaining, offers to stay friends, etc. Just let her have her say without reacting/responding or getting dragged into an argument etc. then wish her well. Do not try to "soften the blow" or sweeten the pot to make yourself look good or attempt to make this easy. Do not offer to revisit things or something 'in the future', etc. It's cruel to string people along with false hope.

 

After all is said and done, you'll have to block and delete her from all social media because she may scour through it looking for answers (like your talking to other girls etc. ) You'll also have to block her from all messaging so both of you can move on..

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Thank you and all the others that have replied, I appreciate the help. My last question is the following. In three weeks I will spend some time in my home country on holiday, should I break-up now via skype call? or should I wait until I visit and then break-up?

I don't know when I should do it for the following reasons:

1) I believe I should break-up in person as it is more respectful.

2) I think it's cruel to wait another three weeks, let her get all excited that I will visit, and then just dump her.

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1 is a myth if it's long distance. Go with 2 and don't procrastinate because it won't be fun one way or the other sooner or later.

1) I believe I should break-up in person as it is more respectful.

2) I think it's cruel to wait another three weeks, let her get all excited that I will visit, and then just dump her.

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