Write a Break Up Email

Edited by Donna, Eng, Dougie, Sarah Maloney

Generally, breaking up with someone deserves a phone call or an in person visit. However, there are exceptions. There are time when that may not be possible or depending on the length of time you've been with someone an email may be more sufficient. The communication in your relationship may be so broken that you are worried about getting your message across in person and decide instead to write an email. Some people just express themselves and their emotions much better in email and so choose to send an email rather than meet in person. In an age of ghosting sending a break up email is much better than simply ignoring or cutting off all communication.

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This article will tell you how to write a break up email that is guaranteed to get your message across.

Before Writing

  1. 1
    Consider making a list of everything you want to communicate to the person, step by step. This way you won't get lost on a tangent or lose the reader's interest. List the important parts and try to stay away from past arguments or petty issues.
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  2. 2
    Predict how the person will take your message and prepare for their actions after the email. Will they simply write back? Will they call? Decide ahead how you will deal with what comes after.
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Step-by-step guide to writing a break-up email

  1. 1
    Set the intention that you are going to keep this email simple, short and courteous in tone. There will be no blaming, shaming, accusations, resentment or anything in this email that is going to make the person feel worse than they already will by the break-up.
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  2. 2
    Devise an email header that draws attention to it, because you want the person to open it.
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  3. 3
    Set the intention that this email will not be more than three paragraphs. This will limit any provocations that might bring the person back into your life demanding an explanation.
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  4. 4
    Start with a positive. This is something you are taught in teacher's college. Before giving bad news or criticism, always start with a positive. We have had a lot of great times together, or I have loved being with you these three months. Transition into the bad news.
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  5. 5
    Your first paragraph should include:  
    1. An appreciation of the good times you had together. You can include brief memories of special times.
    2. A mention of how long you have been together.
    3. An apology if you have behaved badly.
    4. A regret that the relationship is ending.
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  6. 6
    Your second paragraph should include:  
    1. That you are ending the relationship.
    2. The reason(s) that you are ending the relationship.
    3. Your decision is not open to discussion or bargaining.
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  7. 7
    Your third paragraph should include:  
    1. An apology for breaking up in an email, and reasoning.
    2. A request for no further contact.
    3. An expression of good will. You can write something like I wish you all the best,' or 'I know your career is really taking off and am sure future success is coming your way.
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  8. 8
    Edit, rewrite or make any changes to the email.
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  9. 9
    Send the email and let it be. After you send the email there is a tendency to want to contact the person to see how they reacted to your message. Try and resist this as it is disrespectful of the person's privacy, sends a mixed message and leaves the door open for additional communication.
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  10. 10
    Be indifferent to any emails that come back as a response. You can read emails that come back as a response but do not answer them or you will not have ended the relationship.
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  11. 11
    If repeated emails arrive you can block them.
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The less drama there is in the break up email, the faster your ex will be able to mend his or her broken heart.

Tips and Tricks

  • Try to be sensitive about the other person's schedule and don't send it to them when they are at work or school.
  • Don't put anything in the email that you don't want others to read as many people get an email like this and then forward it to others to get their opinion about it.
  • Keep your emotions out of it, no matter how you feel, as this invites further engagement in the future.
  • Do not use pet names that might be painful. Do not discuss anything intimate.
  • No matter what your ex has done do not use abusive phrases or confrontational statements as this can set off a chain reaction of volatile email exchanges
  • Do not leave the door open for a reunion in any way, or your letter will not be taken seriously.

If you have problems with any of the steps in this article, please ask a question for more help, or post in the comments section below.


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Categories : Relationships

Recent edits by: Dougie, Eng, Donna

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