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How to End a Casual Relationship: 18 Ways to End It Without Drama

Relationships can be fun, but sometimes they don’t get as serious as you want them to. So, here is how to end a casual relationship and move past it.

How to End a Casual Relationship

Because casual relationships don’t normally have a starting point, it’s weird when it comes time to end them. But there is a right way to end a casual relationship.

When people are in casual relationships, it can be a little weird. Sometimes they aren’t sure how to go about it. So… we’re not in a real relationship, but we kind of are? 

Many people end up getting emotionally attached, obviously, and sometimes when one person wants to end things, they might just resort to ghosting the other person.  

What do you do? You were never really together to begin with. A lot of people aren’t sure how to handle it. Do you break up with someone you were never actually in a relationship with? Do you tell them you want to end something that doesn’t have a start?

Well, the short answer is yes. [Read: How to have a casual relationship without getting hurt or betrayed]

Why do you want to end a casual relationship?

There is probably an ongoing nagging feeling in the back of your mind that makes you uneasy about this casual relationship. And you’re probably conflicted, too. Part of you really enjoys it, and the other part of you despises it. So, how do you choose which side of yourself to listen to?

It all starts with being honest with yourself. It seems like that would be an easy thing to do, but a lot of people are really good at lying to themselves. So, you need to pretend that you’re not yourself. That sounds strange but bear with us.

Act like you are your best friend, not yourself. What would you see in this casual relationship that you don’t? What advice would you give to yourself if you weren’t you? [Read: When to end a relationship – 15 subtle signs that say right now!]

When we are in the middle of a relationship, we don’t usually see things clearly. Other people see what we don’t, and that’s why they tell us things we don’t want to hear sometimes. 

It’s only when we get out of a relationship that we can see what they saw. Suddenly, everything becomes clear and you wonder why you stayed as long as you did with that person.

So, it all starts with honesty.

Check in with yourself on the current status every now and then

Whether you’re in a serious or casual relationship, you should always check in with yourself and see how you’re feeling.

Are you enjoying the relationship? Is it something you want to continue or not? How you feel when you’re around someone is very important. Don’t waste your time if you’re not enjoying yourself. [Read: 25 tips to end a relationship without making it messy]

If you’re still stuck and don’t know if you should learn how to end your casual relationship, write out a list of pros and cons. What do you like about the other person and why should you stay? Then, what don’t you like about the other person and why should you end the casual relationship?

When you take a pen and a piece of paper and actually write all of this down, it will be very easy to see what you should do. And since you’re reading this feature, you’re probably leaning a lot more toward ending the casual relationship.

So, let’s look at how you should do that. [Read: 25 hurt-free rules to date casually without getting attached to anyone]

How to end a casual relationship

When it comes to casual relationships, the beauty is their very casualness. You don’t have to have any talks about the future or go out of your way for your partner. It’s chill.

This is why when people want to end the relationship, they don’t treat it as a big deal. Of course, it’s not a big deal, but your partner deserves to be told that you’re no longer interested in a casual relationship with them.

You don’t need to have a serious talk with tears and tissues, but you should communicate with them about how you’re feeling.

End things the right way. [Read: 20 signs your friend with benefits is falling for you and is in love with you already]

1. Be honest with your partner

The easy thing would be to lie and make up some stupid excuse for why you’re not into seeing anyone right now. But why lie about it?

This is a casual relationship; you should feel comfortable ending things if you have to. Don’t use the old, “it’s not you, it’s me,” line. You can do better than that. Tell them the truth *in a nice way*.

2. Talk to them in person

Come on, everyone likes to avoid face-to-face contact and would rather text their partner about ending the relationship, but you’re not twelve anymore. That’s not a good look for you.

Meet up with them, grab a coffee, and have a genuine conversation. If this is someone you respect, it’s the least you can do. [Read: How to let someone down easy in person or over text – The full guide]

3. Don’t ghost them

This is the easiest way to “hint” to them you’re no longer interested, but it’s also very immature and disrespectful.

Being ghosted is the worst because you have no closure. Most people would rather be told someone isn’t interested in seeing them anymore than think they disappeared, only to run into them six months later at a Starbucks. [Read: Why you should never ghost someone and the 5 exclusive situations when it’s acceptable]

4. No more sexy time

Yes, the intimacy was great, but if you want to know how to end a casual relationship the right way, you cannot have sex with this person anymore. You need to make a decision.

If you want to continue sleeping with them, then don’t end the relationship, or talk to them about redefining the relationship. But if you’re certain things need to end, stop sleeping with them. Seriously. Don’t play games with people’s feelings. [Read: How long should you casually date someone before it gets serious?]

5. It’s okay to feel bad about this

Before even talking to them about things, you may feel anxious, even guilty about ending things. That’s completely understandable and perfectly normal.

If anything, it shows that you care. Don’t try to push these feelings to the side. Embrace and process them. It’s a breakup after all, and you’re human. [Read: What does a casual relationship mean to a guy and your future?]

6. No mixed signals on social media

After you break the news to them, lay off social media. You can post photos and statuses, but don’t like or comment on their posts.

This really gives off mixed signals, and that’s the last thing you want to do. Take a break from liking their things on social media.

7. Don’t ask to be friends

We all know that cannot happen, at least right now. You need to give them space and time to heal and move on.

If you offer friendship, this will only delay the healing process and make things unclear. Be crystal clear with what you want and how you feel. Don’t muddy the water with friendship. [Read: 12 reasons why the no contact rule is the best way forward]

8. You may receive a negative response

Not everyone likes being dumped, and not everyone is going to handle the news well. Your casual friend may like the current setup of free sex with no strings attached and may become angry or upset, and you must prepare yourself for that.

If you receive negative feedback, don’t respond in anger. Instead, be supportive and kind. They’re hurt, and they’re entitled to have their feelings.

9. Do it as soon as possible

There’s no good time to tell someone you don’t want to continue seeing them, honestly. And the rule holds good for exclusive relationships as well as casual ones.

So, do it as soon as possible. If not, you may start to resent them, and that’s not a good feeling for either of you. Plus, it’s not fun to be strung along by someone who’s not into you anymore. [Read: 20 signs you’re being ghosted or on the verge of being ghosted]

10. When you feel horny, don’t contact them

With a casual relationship comes its own set of perks. But once you end the relationship, the perks are gone. If there’s one night you’re feeling horny, do not contact them.

First of all, it’s extremely selfish. Second of all, you’re not giving a clear signal. If you don’t want to be with them, then end things. Don’t call them when you’re feeling horny. [Read: These 14 casual dating rules make or break your casual relationship]

11. Talk to them about the casual relationship

You don’t know what they’re thinking. Maybe they’re looking to change the relationship, making it even less of a commitment. Unless you talk to them about it, you’ll never know what they want.

If you’re interested in only sex, let them know. If you want more, let them know. See what they say. Maybe they want the same, or maybe not. [Read: How to make your hookup miss you – 26 pros, cons, and ways to hook them]

How to survive the end of a casual relationship

Sure, you probably really enjoyed this relationship while it lasted, but just because it wasn’t serious, that doesn’t mean that you don’t have any grief because it ended.

Just like with anything in life, there is going to be a period where you mourn the loss. So, what should you do?

1. Put it into perspective

When bad things happen to us, we often think it’s the end of the world. Whether it’s a sudden loss or you saw it coming for months, you need to put things into perspective. [Read: How to feel better after a breakup – 22 steps to find your happiness]

If this person allowed you to end things with them without an argument, then you definitely did the right thing. If they really wanted you in their life that badly, then they would have tried to convince you to stay. So, this is actually a good thing that you ended this casual relationship.

2. Write down what you want 

Now that you are out of this casual situation, you will have to sit down with yourself and think about what you really want in a casual or serious relationship. What kind of person do you want and need? What don’t you want?

When you write down your must-haves and deal-breakers, it will assure that you don’t make the same mistakes again.

For example, you obviously didn’t want someone who wouldn’t commit to you. So, that means that next time, you want someone who wants to be in a serious relationship with you. [Read: How to know if you can handle casual dating and see people without commitment]

3. Go out with friends

Just because this casual relationship ended, that doesn’t mean you can’t still have a lot of fun. Get out there with friends. Go to clubs, dance, and try new things.

This will not only keep you distracted from the breakup, but you will also hopefully meet some new people as well. You can meet new friends and also people you might want to date.

4. Get on dating apps

Since most people find their significant others on dating apps these days, why not try it out? But you have to be careful with your profile. You have to write something meaningful so that you attract the right person. You should write that you are only looking for a serious relationship. [Read: How to come out of a relationship stronger than ever when it ends]

Pay special attention to the photos you use too. If they are too sexy or you are half-naked, then you will only attract people who are interested in a casual relationship. So, make sure you look presentable so you can find the right person.

5. Stop dating for a while

Or, maybe you need to just take a break from dating. After ending a casual relationship, some people feel better by getting right back out there on the dating scene, but others don’t. And if that’s you, then stop dating for a while.

Take some time to yourself. Get to know who you really are, and enjoy the things you like doing. Having this me-time will allow you to gain more self-confidence for when you are ready to find someone new. [Read: 16 lessons to recover from a breakup one day at a time and move ahead]

6. Talk to someone

Breakups of any kind are never easy. So, if you’re having a difficult time getting through this on your own, talk to your friends and family. They know you really well, and they will be able to offer some words of wisdom.

If you can afford it, you might even try seeing a professional counselor. They will offer a brand new outside perspective and will help you move past ending this casual relationship. [Read: Exclusive dating or casual fling – How to know your exact status]

7. Now you can find the right person

This may be a time of uncertainty, but now you have the opportunity to meet the right person for you.

If you were still involved with the person you ended the casual relationship with, then you wouldn’t have the time or energy to go out and find Mr. or Ms. Right. So, see this as a blessing!

[Read: 19 clear signs you’re ready for a serious relationship]

Casual relationships have their pros and cons. But when it comes time to know how to end a casual relationship, do it the right way. End things on good terms. 

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