I have a friend who recently ended her relationship with a man she'd been intimately involved with for some time.
She told him:
I stayed with you until I was at peace with what you could offer. I questioned my need for you to give me more and came to accept that what you offered was perfect – that the quality of our time together reflected how little time, approval and acceptance I had for me.
I realized I want to be kinder to myself – and so I am leaving. I have decided to give myself these things (time, approval and acceptance) that I thought you were supposed to give me, therefore I no longer need you to mirror my lack thereof.
I leave you without feelings of hurt or resentment. I have given up my need to gather proof that you somehow failed me. Instead I move on, open and excited about what life holds in store for me, and trusting that what comes next will be as wonderful as what we once had together. No – even better!
I said to her:
You are leaving, so it must be time to go. He has been a wonderful teacher for you of your relationship with yourself. What tremendous gifts he has given you towards greater self-understanding! What success! Go forward in peace and feel the loving support the Universe offers you each step of the way.
This is an example of what a conscious separation looks like.