Dear Lizzy, How Do I Know When It's Time To Break Up With My Girlfriend?


Dear Lizzy,

I have been dating this girl for about 9 months, and we had been “talking” for about 4 months before actually going official. She is great. She’s smart, motivated, successful, and she is always thinking of ways to make me happy.

Recently, we’ve been fighting more and more about “the little things”. Things like the amount of time I spend with her versus the time I spend with my friends. These little things, she says, make her feel like she is always coming second to someone or something. I think I am just balancing time with my friends and my girlfriend as well as I can.

Basically, it feels like she expects more from me than what I have been giving her. In the time we’ve been officially dating, she agrees nothing has changed. She keeps blaming herself every time she gets mad at me for these things, saying that she never was upset with how I do things as a boyfriend before, and that it must be something wrong with her thinking rather than my actions (or lack thereof).

I told her recently that its probably not her fault. That she probably has come to need more from me as our relationship has developed, and that I haven’t been delivering. This seems like it’s making her unhappy, like she deserves more. The fighting that comes out of this is making me unhappy because I am frustrated that I can’t give her more.

I care about her, but it’s all becoming too much for me. She needs more than I can give. I don’t blame her for it, but I don’t want us to end up resenting each other for trying to force this to work, and she seems locked in on staying together and making it work. So my question is basically, is it time to call it quits?


She Probably Deserves More

Dear She Probably Deserves More,

I was originally going to start this with “she definitely deserves more” but that’s actually not the truth. The truth is she doesn’t deserve more, she just deserves someone else.

You don’t come across as an asshole or a selfish prick, the plain and simple truth is those “little things” are not things you are willing to do for her because she is not the girl for you ; you are not in love with her. It doesn’t make you a bad guy and it doesn’t mean she deserves someone better than you, it just means she needs to be with someone who is willing to do those “little things” for her.

That person is not you.

There is, however, a person out there that will love giving her those things and that will do it not out a sense of obligation, but because he loves her and will do anything for her.

Your job is to say goodbye to her so so she can find that person.

As you already mentioned, she doesn’t want that –  she wants to try to make it work – but what she wants does not coincide with what you want and relationships aren’t a one-sided affair. You know it’s time to call it quits so if it’s confirmation you’re seeking here it is: it’s time.

Just do her a favor and he honest. Tell her it’s become too much for you. Tell her you can’t give her what she wants. Tell her you feel like you’re forcing things and don’t want to end up resenting her. Tell her everything you told me so that she gets it completely and isn’t left with the lingering thought of, “Well maybe he’ll want to get back together in a little bit and this is a temporary thing.” Give her the truth so she can move on faster. It’s the best thing you can do for her and even if she doesn’t like it while it’s happening, one day she’ll be grateful for the honesty and closure.

Good luck.

– Lizzy




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