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Advice for telling parents about a breakup

Hi Sam, my girlfriend of two years and I had a completely mutual breakup and everything is healthy but im struggling to find a way to break the news to my parents and family as they have grown very close to her. Do you have any suggestions?

Ask Sam


Hi there,

It can be difficult knowing how to share something important with family or friends. Telling people about big decisions or changes in your life could leave you feeling anxious although chances are, you’ll feel a big sense of relief if you're able to get it off your chest.

Talking to your parents or carers about things can be an important step in maintaining or creating a better relationship. It can also help your parents feel that they can be there for you if you are going through a difficult time. The people you tell might feel sad or confused about why you broke up and may want to ask you questions about it. Sometimes they’ll need time to accept the situation as it is now.

It’s good to make time for important conversations. Trying to tell someone important news may not be ideal if that person is rushing around with lots to do. If you can choose a time when there’s nothing else going on it will help to make sure you get to say things in the way you want.

You could start by talking about the little things first, sharing how your day has been, showing an interest in how theirs has been can be a way to help you feel comfortable and more able to say what's on your mind.

If saying it out loud is too much for you to do there are other ways that you could communicate. You could write someone a letter. This can be a great way to start a difficult conversation. It can give you time to plan what you want to say in exactly the words you want.

Another way of practising what to say is to come through to one of counsellors to talk to through with them. The more you talk about something, the easier it can be to have that conversation again. Childline counsellors are here to support you whenever you feel you need it.

Thanks for your letter.

Take care,


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