In online dating, people often find themselves in a situation where they are in contact with someone but do not want to continue the encounter and need to terminate it somehow. Doing this in a good way for both the person wanting to end the contact and the recipient of the rejection is not always easy. As a result, some people simply stop writing, hoping the other person won't write again and will eventually "go away".

I'm not happy with this solution, as I know how stressful it can be to wait for a reply that doesn't come. For that reason, I want to let the other person know that I'm no longer interested, but now I don't know how to do this best.

I don't want to explain the actual reason. I have found that this can be rather hurtful, especially if it hits on a nerve where the other person is sensitive. Also, it invites discussions and retaliation. (I have especially found "You're not my type" – recommended here – to lead to unpleasant return messages.)

I also don't want to devalue the effort the other person put into writing me or the exchange that might have been going on by a brief (and cold) declaration of disinterest.

So what is a good way to break of contact in online dating?

"Good" meaning:

  • not hurtful (even to sensitive persons)
  • not a lot of work (for me)
  • What sort of contact have you had so far? Are you asking about people that you have only talked to online or that you have actually met up with? How long have you been talking to them?
    – Em C
    Oct 25, 2018 at 1:17
  • 2
    I'm voting to close this question as off-topic because it is a phrasing request.
    – Jesse
    Oct 25, 2018 at 2:10

2 Answers 2


I completely agree with your concerns on how it can be difficult to terminate a conversation with online dating and commend that you would like a softer method.

What I found worked fairly well for myself was to acknowledge the conversation (I think for single messages its acceptable if you choose not to reply but this is certainly something you can decide) and insist on a relatively nondescript reason based on you and close the conversation.

it's been really nice talking to you but I just don't feel that we are a good match. Hope it works out better next time though.

By closing out the conversation with some form of better luck next time it signals that you are not up for discussion on this while still indicating good will.

  • And if you like, you can block the person right after sending this message, so any rude/annoying responses won't reach you. On some sites, they won't ever be notified that you blocked them (from their end, it will look like their messages go through) so in that case, you wouldn't need to worry about the blocking potentially coming across as harsh.
    – user16341
    Oct 25, 2018 at 19:29

Online dating is not very much different than real life encounters.

If you don't think that there's a connection between the two of you, then contact the person and state that. Don't bother with the presumptive "We can still be friends" as that indicates that you ARE friends and that you have determined that the other person should be satisfied with that. Simply tell them that while you enjoyed the time that you spent together (even if you really didn't) you just don't see things moving past that.

If the person is a stable adult (which hopefully you determined BEFORE you decided to go on a date with them) then they will understand and move on with their life. If they become angry or bitter, simply wrap the conversation up and move on with your life. If they continue to contact you, block them online and no longer respond to their texts or phone calls. Ideally, you haven't brought them to your home before getting to know them well, so you won't have to be concerned about their showing up unannounced.

Simply let them know that you don't see a future in things with them, do so in a manner that preserves their dignity and feelings while still getting your point across and move forward with your life. Again online is no different than real life. You tell people how you feel and let them deal with it on their own.


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