Second Chance at Love
Second Chance at Love

20 Euphemisms for Breaking Up (And How they Really Sound)

Whether you need to end your relationship or it's being ended for you - here's what people say when they break up. And how the other person hears it.

20 Euphemisms for Breaking Up (And How they Really Sound)

If you have ever been in a relationship, you've broken up. Many relationships are built on an unstable foundation, and after the honeymoon phase, come crashing down. Which leads to the breakup--and the cliched break-up euphemism thrown your way. Sometimes, they do it with a smile. Other times, tears. Doesn't matter to you, since, in the end, you're the one left with a heavy heart and a drowning spirit.

Or maybe you have to break up with someone, and want to let them down softly. You don't want to just ask them to go to Atlantic City, only to speed off with some lifeguard from Canada, and end up leaving on a road trip to Wisconsin while your partner is waiting at the bar to order your favorite drink. So in the spirit of letting people down gently (you're not) and being let down gently (you won't be), here are twenty euphemisms synonymous with breaking up - and what they sound like to the person whose heart you're breaking.

Photo by Maurizio Di Iorio

I don't see a future with you.

I can't imagine spending another second with you.

It's not you, it's me.

Yes, it isn't you. I'm the one who no longer finds you attractive. Maybe I never liked you in the first place. Maybe I have high standards--like, maybe I want you to get off your phone while we're on a date or to shave your stupid beard.

I just need some space.

Look, I literally can't breathe with you around. You're always there. Always behind me. I can't open my phone without getting fourteen texts from you. You need to just get away. Fast.

I'm going to college.

I see you more as a shackle of my old life than as a human being. You're sweet and all, but I can't get drunk and hook up at college knowing you're there to always weigh me down. Trust me, it's better for me this way.

Our lives are going in different directions.

Your life is going in no direction, and that's holding me back from having a life.

You've changed...

No, that's a lie. You were always an asshole, and now I'm picking up on that--but I don't want to admit I misjudged you in the first place by thinking you had an ounce of good in you. Get the hell out of my apartment.

I think we should see other people.

I might be cheating on you, and I'm definitely having a lot of sex dreams about the people I see on the street. I just don't find you all that sexy, to be honest.

This isn't working.

I can't stand you.

I've got issues I need to work on...

I'm too immature for you right now. That, and dealing with you is so stressful that I've started tugging at my hair when I think about going out with you. So get lost.

I don't want to hurt you.

I feel guilty right now, and this platitude should relieve my guilt about all of this. I feel so much better now about breaking your heart.

It's over, and it has been for awhile.

Did you notice I moved all my stuff into that room across from ours? Really, I'm not sure how you didn't notice I was gone. We aren't sharing a bed, and I always walk in at five in the morning.

All we do is fight.

No, all YOU do is fight!

We've grown apart.

I'm steadily losing interest in you. Or you're steadily losing interest in me. Either way, I don't want to end up stuck in a loveless marriage where we spend all day reading erotic novels in separate beds, so I'm nipping this in the bud now.

I'm not ready for this level of commitment.

You see that butt right across from us now? Look at it. I cannot stop looking at it, and, if you just keep stopping me from grabbing that booty, I think I will literally rip your head off.

I need to focus on my career.

You are keeping me from pursuing my dreams. You're a weight on my back that I can no longer afford. Also, my cubical has proposed to me. We will be married on Tax Day.

I'm not happy around you.

You are depressing to be around. You suck any joy out of me. I can't spend another minute in your presence.

We should take a break.

I'm afraid of committing to a relationship--almost as much as I'm afraid of committing to a break-up. Take this wishy-washy cliche instead so you can cling to the hope that maybe I'll take you back. I won't.

I need to find myself.

I've spent so long with you that I don't know who I am anymore. I don't know if I am a person with my own interests anymore. I feel more like your appendage than your partner, and that scares me.

You're sweet, but we're really better as friends.

We're better as Facebook friends. I may message you when I want nudes.

Get out.

Or I will call the police.

Read next: 'Chocolate Kisses'
Anthony Gramuglia

Obsessive writer fueled by espresso and drive. Into speculative fiction, old books, and long walks. Follow me at

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