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To Sam

I'm not sure what to do

I have gotten my first boyfriend a while back but I'm not sure if I want to be together anymore.

Before, I was so sure that I wanted a relationship with him, but now I see all the reasons why I should break up with him.

I have become really depressed since the last time I have seen him (we have spent quite a while apart) and I don't think I am ready whilst I feel like this.

I know that I have to break up with him for multiple reasons, but I have this need where I can't disappoint people.

We have grown farther and farther apart ever since our first date. This happened to my brother and they just broke up easily, but I think it will be harder for me to do it.
he told me that he actually loves me, but I am not sure that I feel the same way.

i am just rambling on now. But please could you help me on how to break up and help me overcome my fear of hurting him.

Thank you very much, much appreciated

Ask Sam


Hi there,

Thanks for your letter at what seems a difficult time for you. You spoke about wanting to end the relationship with your boyfriend and you’ve done the right thing in writing to me about this.

It seems like you’ve realised that there are more reasons to leave the relationship  than there are reasons to stay. It sounds like that’s left you feeling really trapped and unsure of what to do.

I can hear it’s difficult for you to want to break up with him when you’re scared of hurting him. Breaking up with him now may mean he does get hurt, but if you don’t want to be with him any more, it's the right thing to do. If you stay with him out of sympathy, rather than out of love, then it will only cause him more hurt in the long run.

You speak about your need to not disappoint people. Being able to recognise this need is the first step to changing it. Trying to make others happy all the time can be very tiring and draining. Ultimately, if you try never to disappoint others, you may make yourself really unhappy. It’s okay for you to put yourself first sometimes and think about your own needs and wants. Your thoughts and feelings are important too.

I can hear you’re unsure how to break up with your boyfriend. I don’t think there is ever an easy way to end a relationship, but being honest and respectful will make it less painful for the other person. It may be helpful for you to think of how you would like someone to break up with you, if it was the other way around. You may want to tell him what you’ve told me in terms of you’re not in the right place emotionally and you’re aware that you have both grown apart.

You may find it helpful to read our page on Relationships, which talks about some things to consider when breaking up with someone. Remember you can always go on the Message boards to get some peer support from other young people in similar situations.

If you want to speak to a ChildLine counsellor in more detail about things, you can call them on 0800 1111, have a 1-2-1 chat or send an email.

Take care,


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