20th September 2022

Agony Aunt Angela: Trapped by tears

A student stuck in a toxic relationship needs out, but can’t seem to stay single for long. Can Aunt Angela help them dump their ex guilt free?
Agony Aunt Angela: Trapped by tears

“How do you breakup with someone who refuses to let you? I’ve tried before and end up feeling guilty, meaning we stay together. Other times they tell me I can’t break up with them…”

Ummm, as far as I’m aware, that person isn’t the breakup police. In fact, if you want to break up with someone, you can. You don’t need their permission! I’ve never actually heard of someone refusing to be broken up with – it’s almost funny. Are you sure they know what breakups are?

Your (hopefully) soon-to-be-ex sounds incredibly manipulative and controlling. These are beyond red flags. If anything, their toxic behaviour is a sign to bail even quicker. What gives them the right to decide whether you’re allowed to walk away if you’re unhappy, which you clearly are.  By this point, you’re being held hostage, not in a loving relationship, but in a situationship at most.

If you don’t live together, I would just break up with them over text. Straight after, block them on everything. Instagram, mobile, email, hell even Depop if you have to. You’re past polite moral obligations at this stage.  You just need out, and texting is a quick distanced way of doing it.

Once you’ve done the deed, refrain from any further contact. Share the news with mutual friends that you’ve ended things and maybe explain why. This way, your ex can’t paint you as the ‘bad guy’, making you feel guilty for ending things. Plus, but cutting them off completely, you can genuinely start afresh.

Regardless of how they feel about the situation, they don’t get to ‘refuse’ your decision to end your relationship or invalidate your feelings. If they ask to be friends or even loose acquaintances, firmly decline. They will use any snippet of connection they have with you to try and get you back, further causing you stress. Either way, it needs to end, and you know that. Help is always available if you need it.

Kisses, Agony Aunt Angela

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