Ask A Dude: How Do I End Things Without Breaking His Heart?

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Dear Dude,

I’ve been dating this fella for about five weeks.  We get along well, we enjoy each other’s company, he’s good to me, he’s always treated me like a lady, he’s changed some of his habits for me, and he’s a sweetheart.  Here’s the thing though: I don’t want him.  I don’t feel that “spark” with him. I want to end things with this guy, but I’m not sure how to.  I can’t exactly tell him the truth, although I have talked to him about the lack of “spark” I feel and that didn’t seem to bug him.  Yet, I don’t want to give the lame “It’s not you, it’s me” excuse.  He’s a good man, Dude.  He’s just not my happily ever after. So, what can I tell him that will end things but not break his heart?

Sincerely,
Don’t Go Breakin’ His Heart

Dear Don’t Go Breakin’ His Heart,

The cigarette smoke’s caressing my scars. I think of her lips as they told me not to call her again. Not quite a pout and not quite a smile. She wasn’t my happy ending. She wasn’t much of anything. I didn’t think it when she lowered the truck onto my aorta back then but I’m thinking it now: thank you, angel, for cutting my strings…wherever you are…

It’s a harsh reality out there. Like a centipede’s bill at Payless, there’s a hefty price for barking up the wrong tree. You got a Joe that you need to get rid of but you want the job done clean. The craziest part of the world we crawl around in is a simple fact reinforced by fiction: You want to drive him away, you lay him out in the backseat and push it over a cliff.

Take it from a man who’s seen his fair share of heartbreak in this world. You got to be straight. Worse, you got to be brutal. The why’s of the world don’t amount to a hill of beans. You don’t have to spell it out, but you can’t leave a pause in the conversation that he can squeeze hope out of. A simple “no thank you” isn’t going to keep this monkey from swinging behind every tree you pass seeing if you’ll throw him a banana. Cut the fruit off at the vine. Honesty’s not pretty but you got you to put one right between the eyes if you don’t want him getting back up again.

Seems rotten don’t it? Like sour milk in a venti peppermint mocha. Well, nobody said life would always be pretty. Dating’s a gritty game. You want to play with the angels then go join a convent. You want your kicks you’re going to have to put a few into a man’s stomach every once in a while. The heart will heal faster and stronger if the break’s clean.

You’re doing the smart thing. I applaud any woman that doesn’t keep dangling the carrot when she wants the jackass to quit following her. Sad part is, heartbreak isn’t a landmine you can simply step aside of. It’s not your call how he takes it, you just have make sure he gets the message. You might have to be what he’ll call cruel. At the end of the line though, you have to make it clear that he’s a square peg and you’re a round hole. All the fighting in the world won’t make you fit and you don’t want to be involved in the struggle.

What you’re doing is an act of mercy. He might not see it that way but he’ll get over it. If you can find a way to pawn him off on another girl that could help. The next one’s a cure for the last one. Until that happens there aren’t any guarantees of being Twitter or text free from him.

I’ll lay odds he’s got an inkling it’s coming. When one person wants out the other can usually sense it. You might be surprised that he won’t be surprised. Fact is, you won’t know until you do it. He’s got to take the hit.  You got to lay it right across the cheek.

Gentle doesn’t come off as permanent. Play the arrow. You’re not looking to knock him down a few notches, you’re just trying to do what’s best for the both of you. He might not want to hear it. You’ll have to parrot a couple times over. Just don’t change your story and don’t give him a foothold in the decision. It’s yours to make and his to take. He’s got to take the hit.

Time to shake the tree and see what falls on you,
Dude Marlowe

[Isn’t he wise? Don’t you wish you could get more? You can! Check out The Dude’s other insights into the male mind right here.]

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