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23 Big Questions & Steps to Leave Someone You Love & Not Regret It

The relationship has hit a dead end and you know it’s time to go. But, how to leave someone you love despite everything that’s happened? It’s always hard. 

how to leave someone you love

‘Goodbye’ is perhaps the most bittersweet word one can ever say – it can leave quite an impact on your life and may forever be etched into your memory. But, how to leave someone you love? Prepare for heartache.

Relationships come and go. As much as we want our romantic relationships to last forever, there are those that just weren’t meant to be. There will always be relationships that will inevitably end, no matter how much time or how many tears are invested in them.

Wanting to know how to leave someone you love is the most heartbreaking situation to be in. The world always assumes that people who do the breaking up make the effortless decision of leaving, but that’s not the case at all.

When you decide to leave someone, it takes an immense amount of courage to make that decision. Is it a change of heart, an epiphany, or a moment of clarity? Or maybe, it’s all three? [Read: How to break up with someone you love – 18 steps & the things to say]

Should you really leave?

There are commonalities in the reasons people want to leave someone they love. Being in love sounds fantastic, doesn’t it? But unfortunately, sometimes it’s not fantastic, or sometimes everything changes for the worst.

But, before you research the ways on how to leave someone you love, take a second and pause. Find out if you really should leave the person you are with. After everything you’ve been through together, is it really worth leaving them?

Of course, if they’re bad or toxic for you, then don’t take a second to decide before leaving. If not, you really need to think this through. [Read: Are you suffering from the White Knight syndrome?]

Learning to let go

The hardest part of letting go is that it can feel impossible to say goodbye to someone you hold dear. You might find yourself clinging to the tiniest shreds of a beautiful ideal, while you try to blind yourself to reality.

Goodbyes always leave you with a feeling of uncertainty. You might even feel fear, because you are brought into a world of unknown. Leaving someone who meant so much to you can be heart-wrenching. The experience can be traumatic for both parties, and can cause your heart to grow bitter.

When can we see the good in goodbye? When can we no longer be drawn to tears when this word is uttered? [Read: How to leave a toxic relationship – 24 steps to end it and find happiness]

A successful relationship is a two-way street. You can never expect a relationship to succeed if one of the parties decides to go about it half-heartedly. Feelings can fly out the window when your heart grows tired, weary, and hungry.

There are those who try to salvage what they can of the relationship. Unfortunately, there are those who discover that there was nothing in the relationship that was worth saving. Many of these unfortunate ones find out about this when it is too late, and their hearts are mangled. [Read: How to fall out of love when you see no future in the romance]

Questions to ask before you bid adieu

Before you make the crucial decision to leave someone you love, be sure to do some introspection. ‘Goodbye’ is a serious word, and shouldn’t be said lightheartedly.

Saying ‘goodbye’ out of the blue can leave a traumatic scar on the other person involved, as well as yourself. [Read: Dumper’s regret – A timeline and stages of remorse when you dump someone]

Before you decide to leave someone, ask yourself these questions.

1. Why am I leaving?

This is perhaps the all-important question to ask yourself before you decide to leave your partner. Really give yourself time to answer this question, and be sure to dig deep. Remember that the reasons for leaving someone have to go beyond the superficial.

Has the relationship become abusive? Do the sad moments outweigh the happy ones? When you find that you can no longer save the relationship, have that talk with your partner, and let go now before it becomes too late. [Read: 21 honest reasons why so many couples drift apart over time]

2. Would I still be myself if I left this person?

There are too many people who have lost their identities because of a relationship. Once they found themselves in a relationship, they distanced themselves from everything they identified with—hobbies, passions, and even friends and family.

They latched themselves on to their partner and lost their identities in the process.

Before you decide to leave someone you love for good, ask yourself if you lost your identity when you entered the relationship. Will you still be yourself once the relationship is over, and can no longer be identified as your partner’s significant other? [Read: 23 codependent traits that make you clingy and how to break out of it]

3. Where do I see myself with this person in the next five years?

When you have been with your partner for quite some time, you are most likely thinking about the future. The years can take a relationship two ways: either you are in it for the long haul or you are not.

When you find that you are having doubts, ask yourself: do I still want to be with this person five years from now?

Time can change people, and if you feel like time won’t be an ally in the relationship, it is time for both of you to rethink your partnership. [Read: 16 signs it’s time to move on and end the relationship]

4. Does this person make me happy?

A healthy relationship should make you feel happy. It is true that no relationship is perfect and that there will always be storms. The struggles that these people face will make their relationship stronger.

However, amidst these struggles, you should feel overall happiness. If you feel that you are unhappy in the relationship, do not insist on staying because you have a sense of obligation.

If you feel unhappy and feel the need to leave someone you love and end the relationship, you have a right to voice your feelings to your partner. [Read: 10 steps to tell your partner how unhappy you feel in the relationship]

5. Am I a better person because of this relationship?

Human beings are very stubborn creatures. They never change, unless there is something that drives them to change their ways. When you are with your partner, ask yourself: do you feel that you are a better version of yourself, because of the relationship?

When your partner makes you want to be a better person, and you want to change your bad habits for the better, you’ll know that you are with the person who brings out the best in you.

But if you feel that the relationship brings you nothing but resentment, anger, and other negative feelings, it is time to detach yourself. [Read: How to become a better person in a relationship and be happier too]

6. Do I love this person, or just the version of them I want them to be?

Love is quite complicated and, more often than not, we tend to look at everything through rose-colored glasses. People will change their ways only if they want to. Remember that it all comes down to free will.

Do not continue to kid yourself that you will continue to love a false version of the person you are with. If you cannot love them now, will you be able to love them in the future?

Remember that there is great pain in staying in a false relationship, and neither of you deserves that. [Read: 22 big signs you’re trapped in a troubled relationship]

7. Will there be regrets if I don’t end it now?

Letting go of someone or leaving the one you love is difficult. Look to the future and see where you find yourself five years from now. Remember that living with regrets can scar you for life, and you will keep beating yourself up because of it.

There are far worse things than having to stay single for a while. Remember that you shouldn’t yearn for the past, just because it is comfortable and familiar.

An unfulfilling relationship can only eat away at your happiness and there is no sense in prolonging it. [Read: How to deal with regret and learn to face your reality for what it is]

8. What value does this person bring to my life?

There are people who add value to our lives. They are the people who make the world seem brighter and more cheerful. Does your partner make you feel this way?

If your partner helps you see the joy in each day, and helps you see the light in dark days, you have found someone worth fighting for.

When you find yourself in doubt, always ask yourself if the relationship is worth sacrificing your happiness for. [Read: 34 valid reasons to break up with someone you love]

9. Are we both dedicating time and commitment to the relationship?

While many of us find ourselves overburdened by obligations, and stressed for time, we can always manage to make time for those we love. Remember that no one is ever too busy, and they can always make time for you.

Never allow yourself to be placed in the backseat all the time because of constant obligations. If you are not being respect or desired in a relationship, you can always leave the one you love because the relationship will end neverthless.

10. What will my life be like when I have left?

Look to the future once again, and imagine what your life would be like without this person around. If you find that you will be at peace without your partner in your life, you’d better come clean while both your hearts are still intact.

Breakups can be tumultuous—but, like all storms in life, they do not last. You owe it to your heart to cleanse your life of negative feelings, because life is too short to live with regrets.

If you feel it is time to let go, cut the cord while time is still your friend. [Confession: My 9 year love – The pain of ending a long term relationship]

How to leave someone you love and not look back with regret

Now that you have asked yourself the important questions, here are ways on how to leave someone you love. It’s heartbreaking but often necessary.

1. Don’t sugarcoat it

If you’re really persistent in leaving them, there’s no need to sugarcoat it. Be straightforward and direct with them if you want to avoid getting their hopes up or miscommunication. If you sugarcoat it, they might misinterpret it as something other than a breakup.

You’re ending things, so have the audacity to be honest with them for at least the very last time. If it’s their fault, this will help them see what to improve and avoid doing the next time around. [Read: How to end a relationship on good terms – 20 ways to end things gracefully]

2. Do it personally

As easy and effortless as breaking up over text, call, or social media is, it’s not a breakup your partner deserves. A personal breakup is more intimate and gives them the closure they need to process the breakup.

It also shows you respect them enough to break up with them face-to-face. Also, don’t ghost them either, as that’s the worst thing you can do to them. [Read: Why relationships fail – 25 reasons why love can fall apart entirely]

3. Don’t ask them to be friends

You’re breaking their heart further by asking them to be friends even after a breakup. So if you want to know how to leave someone you love, don’t ask them to be your friend or still be in your life.

Not only are you breaking their heart further, but you’re also giving them false hopes.

Most importantly, the only reason you’d be asking this is to feel better about yourself during the breakup and to still have them without the commitment. It’s a very heartless move, so avoid doing this. [Read: Can you be friends with an ex after a breakup?]

4. Do it privately

If you want to have the proper breakup, do it privately. That is, if you want to avoid one of you making a scene, or if you want to say everything that needs to be said. It can be quite awkward to do it in a public place, and you might not say everything that needs to be said.

Your relationship is a very private and intimate thing between both of you and up until the last moment, it should be that way. [Read: 20 best questions to ask your ex after a breakup to find closure]

5. Don’t question your breakup

The one thing you need to remember if you want to know how to leave someone you love is not to question your decision. You got to this point of this feature, so you must be pretty confident in breaking up with them.

So you owe it to them and the relationship not to question your decision. This means no going back to them once you’ve walked away. Once you break up with them, that should be final. [Read: When is it time to break up? 15 signs to know for sure if it’s time]

6. Don’t be affectionate

When you do the breaking up, it’s often you that feels like the bad person in this scenario. No matter how much you want to comfort them, don’t engage in any form of affection.

Your relationship is over, and it’s no longer your responsibility to make them feel better or comfort them.

When you show affection, it might also cause them to believe there’s still a chance for the relationship to work. If you want to know how to leave someone you love the right way, just act civil during the breakup.

7. Skip cliche lines

You know the popular lines such as “it’s not you, it’s me” or “I just need to fix myself.” Avoid using those at all costs. There’s no point in saying them just to avoid the inevitable.

Again, you’re only hurting them further and just hiding the truth from them. If you want to say you fell out of love, just say it. You know what they say – it’s better to hurt them with the truth than comfort them with a lie. [Read: 18 break up lines you can use for a mess-free break up]

6 reasons that you might not want to leave someone you love

Of course, it may be that you don’t need to leave at all. If you’re on the fence, perhaps some of these reasons may stop you from leaving.

The good news is that if you hold out through the storm, there are often sunny skies to come. [Read: Relationship therapy -25 clues to know if it’ll help your romance]

1. The grass always looks greener

For most of us, the grass always seems greener, but it’s often an illusion.

So instead of immediately leaving because things get tough, try to see things through and make it work. There will always be struggle and pain, but it’s all a matter of choosing who’s worth the struggle.

If you think your single friends have it awesome because they go out with anyone they want, and they don’t have the hassle of someone on their case, that may be right and it may not. Statistics show about 50 percent of married people who get divorced end up wishing they tried to work it out.

So if there’s even the slightest chance you can work it out, why not try? [Read: The 28 signs that your relationship is over already]

2. If you leave the relationship, then you will be instantly happy

It isn’t that leaving a troubled relationship isn’t good for some people. In fact, many people are much happier when their partner is gone. The problem is if you love someone and you leave them, you might just find out the problem wasn’t them.

Relationship patterns tend to repeat themselves, so if you tend to make the same mistakes in a relationship, it won’t change just because you break up with your partner.

So before asking yourself how to leave someone you love, maybe you should first be reflecting on the underlying problem underneath. [Read: How to calm your mind and make peace a state of mind]

3. You’re on a self-imposed downward cycle

Instead of leaving the person you love, try to turn things around by thinking positively and presenting the same to them. It’s easy to convince not just yourself but your partner too that things aren’t going to work. That’s only sabotaging the relationship.

We’re not saying that your problems are imaginary and not valid, but if you tend to sabotage your own relationships because of your baggage, then it’s time to look within. [Read: Is your relationship stuck in a karmic cycle? Make a decision now]

4. Love isn’t supposed to be this hard

If there’s a common reason why people want to know how to leave someone you love, it’s this. We see this line all the time and unfortunately, it’s not an accurate representation of what relationships are. We all grew up watching chick flicks and sitcoms with happy endings.

In life, there are many times when there are unhappy endings. If you think you should leave someone you love because your relationship isn’t working because it is just too damn hard, think again. If you want something to work, you need to put in the work.

It’s unrealistic and impractical to assume that relationships should be effortless and easy as that’s now how life works. Love isn’t a fairytale. It’s an enduring like and support group between two people. [Read: 20 hugely false dating myths you need to banish from your mind]

5. They won’t ever change

Now, this one is probably true; they won’t ever change. But, you stop and ask yourself if you really want them to change. There are personality characteristics about ourselves that are nearly impossible to alter, but that is both good and bad.

You knew exactly what you were getting into the moment you entered the relationship, so why did you just realize this now?

Granted that love can make us stupid and blind, but the definition of love is also accepting the person they are without any conditions. [Read: Have modern relationships changed for the better or are they worse?]

6. Things are too instant, and no one wants to work for things

We live in the modern dating era and unfortunately, it comes with the need for instant gratification thanks to the internet and technology. We’re so used to immediately getting what we want when we want it, but that’s not how it’s supposed to work. Love takes hard work and dedication.

So before you think about the ways on how to leave someone you love, assess first if you’re the type who wants things right away. You shouldn’t leave just because things get hard and you want instant gratification.

Relationships can be happy, but that’s not all they are. It’s a combination of both bad and good. [Read: 27 signs of an unhappy person that are hidden behind a happy smile]

Be as sure as you can be before you leave

Leaving is sometimes just as hard, if not more than staying with someone you love. Just make sure before you do leave that you know it’s what you want in your heart. Don’t ever look back and regret what you let go of.

So before you make this decision you can potentially regret, make sure that it’s the right decision for you. Assess your relationship and all your reasons for breaking up before pushing through with it. If it’s really unfixable, then walk away.

[Read: How to tell your partner you’re unhappy and 18 steps to not hurt them]

In some cases, it’s better to part ways now than to stubbornly insist on staying and find out too late that you have become strangers in each other’s eyes. So if you’re wondering how to leave someone you love, ask yourself these questions, and give these steps a thought. And then, make up your mind for good.

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