The emotions of being in a relationship are great, but when things go south, it can lead to the feeling of bitterness and as if things are on life support. While you and your girlfriend may try to keep things together momentarily, when it’s too difficult to find common ground, ending a relationship can bring a lot of anxiety.

Trust us, you know that it’s the right thing to do and that you’ve got to rip off the band-aid rather than slowly peel it back, but, damn, telling someone you have feelings for that you just aren’t into them anymore is tough. But, hey, it has to be done when the relationship just doesn’t feel right.

For those who might be struggling with ending a relationship, we’re here to help walk you through how to do it the right way. Remember, you want to be aware of your girlfriend’s feelings and emotions, and know that, while she’ll be hurt and/or angry, those feelings towards you don’t need to last forever — assuming you show her respect while breaking up with her.

Don’t dance around the subject

Back in my younger days, I was super guilty for doing this, as I didn’t want to hurt the feelings of the girl I was dating by just ending things. And, in truth, I probably wanted to have my cake and eat it too, knowing that ending a relationship would lead to zero sex following the breakup. Man, what a jackass I was.

Don’t be like me way back when and avoid the topic of a breakup. Whether it’s obvious to both of you or you’re feeling like there’s a lost connection, the last thing you want to do is be the nice guy who’s faking feelings while the other person is still hopeful for a future together.

Avoid giving hints that you’re losing interest

Another classic move some guys do to avoid the breakup conversation, you need to show your girl respect by communicating with her how you really feel about things and not just cut her off for no reason. If you’re looking to cause drama in hopes that she either a) gets the hint and ends things so you don’t have to, or b) leads to a fight so you can equally just call things off, you’re not being mature about the relationship.

Don’t be a jerk and just hope she ends the relationship first

Along the same lines as above, you don’t want to just pull a 180 and start acting like a complete jerk towards her because you’re too insecure to cut things off yourself. Most guys don’t want to hurt a girl’s feelings by ending a relationship, but it happens, it hurts and then everyone moves on. It’s not fun, we know that, but you don’t want to show an ugly side of yourself while going through it, so, at all costs, avoid being a jerk and causing drama beforehand.

Avoid telling too much information

You don’t need to give a reason for breaking up other than that you’re not interested anymore. Sure, she’ll pry and ask questions and, probably, be hurt or emotional, but don’t let down your guard by telling her too much. It may be as simple as not having feelings anymore, but it also might be that you’re starting to feel something for someone else. Whatever the true reason is, keep things short and as sweet as possible, telling her how you’ve really valued your time together and hope that, in time, can remain friends if she wants that.

Be a man and have the break up conversation

This is simple, guys; when you’re no longer feeling that connection, it’s time to end it. Sure, you may try to convince yourself otherwise for a little bit, relying on the physical chemistry and “good days” together, but if you’re more interested in other things than seeing your girlfriend, there’s a serious problem. Rather than do some of the things we’ve listed above, take control of your feelings and be honest with yourself and your girlfriend, ending a relationship swiftly.