No one expects to go through a Something Borrowed-esque situation IRL. You don't want to have to end one relationship in favor of another. But sometimes, that's just the way it works out, and you have to have that awkward conversation. So, how can you go about breaking up when you’ve fallen for someone else? Well, even experts agree that it's complicated, but if you just can't stay in your current relationship anymore, experts say there is a way to end it softly.
First of all, it's important to note that just because you've fallen for someone else, that doesn't automatically mean you should end things with your partner. In fact, you should break up with your significant other, "only if you already believed that your partner is not the best match for you" prior to falling for someone else, licensed clinical psychotherapist and relationship expert LeslieBeth Wish tells Elite Daily.
Sure, maybe you met someone new and have an instant connection, but Wish warns against taking drastic action. "Falling in love with someone else when you are in an intimate relationship can be like eating dessert first and then assuming that the main meal was equally as good," she says. Just because this new person is cute, sweet, and funny doesn't mean it would work out between you two if you left your current partner for them.
On the other hand, if you're convinced it would, then follow this expert advice.
According to Wish, you should take a look at why you want to break up before actually doing the breaking up. Then, have an honest conversation with your partner. "If breaking up is the best choice, then tell your current partner why the relationship is not working for you," she says. "After all, that should be the main reason you are breaking up — not that someone else has come along."
Additionally, if you've fallen for someone else while currently in a relationship, then your relationship might not be on very good terms to begin with. "I think that the fact the you even had the opportunity to fall for someone else says a lot about your investment in your current relationship," Trina Leckie, breakup BOOST podcast host tells Elite Daily. "If you are really happy and satisfied with your current partner, there would be no need to be looking elsewhere… and frankly, you wouldn’t want to risk losing what you have." So perhaps you falling for someone else is just another sign that your current relationship isn't working out too well.
But that still doesn't mean you should be flippant about ending things with your current partner. "Sit them down and have a kind, caring, and compassionate discussion (no text or email breakups)," Leckie advises. She says to try to "end the relationship without giving them details about the other person because that can be extremely hurtful, really bruise their confidence, and make them fearful of getting in future relationships."
She suggests you start gently. "Start off the conversation by saying something positive about them and about the time you shared together (to soften the blow a bit)," Leckie says. Then, get into it. "Explain that you don’t feel as invested in the relationship anymore and you feel it would be better for both of you to go your separate ways," she continues. Lastly, try to be understanding. "Anticipate that they may get upset or even angry, but it is imperative to stay calm and compassionate," Leckie suggests. "Put yourself in their shoes. On the other hand, their intuition may have already told them that something was off, so it may not come as a huge surprise to them."
Whatever you do, be honest and be kind. No one goes into a relationship thinking they're gong to end it for someone else, but when it does happen, prioritize your wellbeing. Just remember to really think things through and do what's best for you and your relationship.