Breaking up is not easy for some people, and I am one of those people. But I did have to break up with someone in the past and I wondered whether I would get bad karma for breaking up with him and for breaking his heart.

If you’re wondering whether you get bad karma for breaking someone’s heart, the short answer is yes, you do. Every time you hurt someone’s feelings, you get bad karma. But the long answer is that it depends on the karmic history you have together. It could be that your karma together as a couple is simply finished and you have no reason to be together anymore.

In this situation, it is natural to part ways. It could also be that this person had broken your heart in a past life and you are simply, karmically, getting even. Don’t think of it like getting even in a mean way but more like balancing your karma so that you can both be free. There’s more to it though, so let me explain with a few personal stories that will show you how karma works and what the karmic books say about this.

Many people act like their actions have no consequences, but you and I both know that there are always consequences and that every action has a reaction. This is a law of karma that happens to be just as real as the law of physics that says for every action there is a reaction of equal force. That means for everything you do to another person, especially in a break-up situation or when you have to break someone’s heart, there is a karmic consequence and a karmic debt is created.

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You will eventually have to pay back this karmic debt. But don’t get scared because there’s a good reason behind it.

Do you get bad karma for breaking someone’s heart?

If you break someone’s heart, when you truly hurt someone’s feelings, this will come back to you. The most common way that it will come back to you is that you will have to feel the exact same pain that you caused the other person in almost the exact same way. It happened to me before and I can speak from experience that you will have to be in the place of the person who broke your heart and get your heart broken in the exact same way.

It’s not just a fancy quote, it’s a fact. You will never understand the damage you did to someone else until the same is done to you.

You will never understand the damage you did to another person until the same is done to you. - Karma quotes

Why do you have to go through the same karma that you caused?

Well, it’s simple. The rule of karma goes like this: You get what you give. So if you’ve caused the experience of breaking someone’s heart, you get your own heart broken. And the amazing thing is that it will happen to you almost in the exact same way that you did it to the other person.

When you read my own story of karma in a romantic relationship, you will see that my heart was broken in almost the exact same way that I broke someone else’s heart more than 10 years before and I had to go through the same heartache as I had caused. It took me more than 2 years to heal from that heartbreak and I realize now that it had probably taken my ex from 10 years ago about the same amount of time to heal from the heartbreak I had caused.

But why does this happen?

I think that this happens because humans are experiential learners. When we experience something, the wisdom from that goes deep within us and integrates with our consciousness. This type of learning and understanding is much deeper than anything we can read in a book or hear a story about.

I believe that we choose to come to this planet to have experiences. We want to experience all that life has to offer because it is through experiences that we get the deepest understanding. Experience is worth a lot and that’s why senior managers earn more than young employees – because they have experience that they gained over a much longer period of time and through many more life and work experiences.

When we experience heartbreak in the same way that we gave someone a broken heart, we get to experience the other side of the story. This helps us to finally understand what we did and what kind of effect our actions had on another person.

What if the other person has broken your heart too?

What if you didn’t cold-heartedly break-up with someone just like that out of the blue? What if you had a good reason for it like the other person had already hurt you many times before you broke his or her heart?

Everything has a limit and there is a limit to how much you could take as well, so it is natural that after being hurt a certain number of times, you got fed up and decided to break things off for good. Of course, that’s totally acceptable, but there is still a consequence for your final action. The only way I can explain this is with a personal story.

My story of getting my heart broken

This goes back to the original story I shared about karma in relationships with my ex-boyfriend. We had dated for about 5 years, on and off. I had originally asked him out when I was 14. I was very innocent back then and quite naive and he was a jock, very masculine, and his closest friends were the cool athletic guys in school.


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After our summer break when we didn’t see each other at all, we came back to school and he broke up with me right away. I was 15 at the time, and to be honest, it did break my heart a little. I thought that I had given him so much and he just didn’t like me enough to want to be a couple or maybe his friends didn’t think I was cool enough.

Later in that school year, we somehow got back together again. I don’t remember who asked who out this time around but we were older and there was much more physical attraction between us this time around. But again, we broke up at the end of the year. Maybe because I didn’t want to come back to school after summer and get my heart broken again by him, or it was just a mutual decision, I don’t remember. It doesn’t mean that I didn’t hurt me or that it didn’t break my heart all over again.

At the end of our final year in high-school, we got back together again and we decided to go to the same university. Once we were in university, suddenly I was exposed to so many new people, new social circles, and met new interesting guys who didn’t just fit into the jock or nerd category but were much more interesting and multidimensional. Suddenly I wanted to experience more than what my reliable and predictable high-school boyfriend could provide. So, towards the end of our first semester at university, I broke up with him.

I know it crushed him.

I know it broke his heart into a million pieces.

I know that I hurt him beyond words can describe.

And I know that because, 10 years later, I experienced the same heartbreak from someone else.

Do all the small heartbreaks he caused me throughout high-school justify the big one I caused him in university? No, they don’t. I believe he had already paid back his karmic debt for those little heartbreaks through fights that we had had and through the process of breaking up and getting back together over and over again.

My friends tried to justify my final act of the big breakup by saying, “But he was so mean to you in high-school!” but in my heart, I know the real reason I broke up with him in the end. I wanted more experiences in dating and I wanted to meet new people who I could have those experiences with.

That was the root cause of the final breakup. And that’s the karma I carried with me until it came back around and I had to go through another breakup with someone else where he wanted new experiences rather than being in a reliable and predictable relationship with me.

So you see how all the little heartbreaks don’t justify the big one in the end because if I was 100% honest, I didn’t break off our relationship completely at the end because of the added up pain from all the little breakups. I did it because of a completely different reason and therefore the karma is unrelated to the little breakups.

What if you have a good reason for breaking someone’s heart?

I’m sure you’re not an evil person and you’re not just breaking someone’s heart for fun. You have a good reason for it like not being into the other person as much as they are into you, outgrowing the other person, or another valid reason. That’s totally OK but (unfortunately) you will still get karma from this breakup.


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You might think that this is unfair because after all, you have a good reason for doing this. Maybe the relationship just doesn’t work for you anymore. Maybe it hurts more to stay in it than to get out of it. And that’s all totally OK. The reason why you will still get karma from it is because of what I said earlier.

“You will never understand the damage you did to someone else until the same is done to you.”

Karma quotes - You will never understand the damage you did to another person until the same is done to you.

It doesn’t make you a bad person. You simply have to experience the same breakup but from the other side in order to get the full picture. It might take some time until it comes back to you and you will get the chance to experience it from the other side. For me, it took 10 years but eventually I had the chance to experience what I did to my ex, first hand.

I really mean this and you need to trust me when I say: You are not a bad person for the karma you create from breaking someone’s heart. Even if you have hurt someone a lot because of this breakup or have had your heart broken terribly, you are not a bad person for it.

Think of it like an equation that needs to be balanced out on both sides. That’s how karma works. For everything “good” you’ve done, you’ll get the same goodness back and for everything “bad” you’ve done, you’ll get the bad stuff back.

That’s the good news. Karma doesn’t pick sides. It will return the good and the bad back to you equally.

How can you get rid of the karma if you’ve already broken someone’s heart?

Unfortunately, you can’t get completely rid of your karma but you can certainly speed up the time it takes for you to pay back your karmic debt. The best way to pay back the karmic debt you owe to someone is by asking for forgiveness from that person. This can be done in two ways:

  1. Asking in person or contacting the person to ask for forgiveness
  2. Asking for forgiveness in your heart, but really truly feeling sorry about it first so you mean it

Asking for forgiveness to get rid of karma

If you are going to ask someone for forgiveness in person, or in a message or email, then you have to be ready to receive some bitterness back. On one hand, the best case scenario is that it will be pleasant and you will say sorry, and the other person will say “It’s OK. It happened for a reason. Let’s forget it. It’s nice to hear from you by the way. Glad to hear that you’re doing well.”

On the other hand, they could still be holding onto resentment towards you and will react negatively towards you after receiving your message. They may decide to highlight all the ways that you hurt them, tell you all of their reasons why you are a bad person and what you did to them long ago was bad. They may spin it in a way that they were the dumb one to allow you to hurt them so badly, which is basically a passive-aggressive way to tell you that it’s all your fault and they are still not over it.

If this happens then the last thing you want to do is to go into defense mode and try to defend yourself. Do your best just to hear the other person out, give them an opportunity to vent and air out their feelings and then respond with something very short like, “I understand and I mean it when I say sorry. Wishing you all the best.” Just keep it short. The other person might get even angrier but they will get the hint that you just wanted to apologize and not necessarily reopen old wounds and start a new fight. If they message you again with something rude, just ignore it.

karma quotes - in the end, karma will be a bigger bitch than I'll ever need to be.

I have to be honest and say that I have not yet asked for forgiveness in person, face-to-face. The thought of it makes me really nervous and seeing the person from my past may awaken feelings that I don’t want to deal with anymore. I have messaged ex-boyfriends asking for forgiveness and also old friends who I knew I had hurt and it went both ways as I mentioned above.

Getting rid of karma by saying sorry in your heart

The second method of speeding up balancing your karmic debt is by asking for forgiveness in your heart. If you’ve read the book Eat, Pray, Love by Elizabeth Gilbert, you will know that she had used this method when resolving her conflict with her ex-husband, and according to the book, it worked.

The key to this method is to truly and honestly feel sorry in your heart and to feel the remorse of having hurt another person. Often you feel this when you go through a similar experience of heartbreak that you caused the other person. When that happens, you automatically feel true and honest remorse in your heart. When you feel it, you can go into meditation and after your meditation, you can take a moment to visualize yourself in front of the other person, and then tell them you are sorry.

I have tried this method before and I know it works. I had been struggling to let go of my guilt about treating an ex-boyfriend in a certain way. I was struggling with this so much that I even had a cranio-sacral therapy session to deal with my feelings. In the session, as I went into a meditative state, I came face-to-face with him and had to communicate with him so that I would have a deeper understanding of what was causing me the guilt and whether it was a legitimate reason or whether I was taking on something that wasn’t even an issue from his side. After this meditation, I felt relieved from this burden I had been carrying around for 4 years and was finally able to let go and be free from that guilt. I believe that by “meeting” my ex in meditation and asking saying sorry in my heart helped to dissolve this particular karma I had with him because I finally came to an understanding of why what happened between us had to happen.

After this meditation, I felt relieved from this burden I had been carrying around for 4 years and was finally able to let go and be free from that guilt. I believe that by “meeting” my ex in meditation and asking saying sorry in my heart helped to dissolve this particular karma I had with him because I finally came to an understanding of why what happened between us had to happen.

So, you see that even if you have bad karma for breaking someone’s heart, you also have many ways in which to balance your karmic debt and make things right again.

Now I want to hear from you. Do you feel like you have bad karma for breaking someone’s heart? What did you do and how do you feel that the karma is affecting your life now? Put it in the comments below.

If you think that this post might help someone who is struggling with guilt from breaking up with someone, please forward it to them. You might be helping ease someone’s pain more than you know.

Author: Ritu

Ritu is an Atma Kriya Yoga and meditation teacher. A long time blogger and writer, she writes about personal development, spirituality, and meditation.

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14 thoughts on “Bad Karma For Breaking Someone’s Heart

  1. I am feeling the burden of being in a relationship with someone I no longer
    Love.I am an empathy and also I was scared of karma.thank you

    Posted on May 13, 2019 at 1:59 pm
    1. I am an empath too and I understand how you might be feeling. It is a bit scary, I get it. But if you no longer love the person, you have to do what is right for both of you in the relationship. Is it fair to the other person that they should unknowingly be in a relationship with someone who doesn’t love them? Think about it. In the end, if you do it with respect, then even breaking up will be a good thing. Eventually, if the karma comes back to you in the same way, at least you will also receive the same respect. It could also be that you are simply getting even with this person from a past life.

      Posted on May 26, 2019 at 5:02 pm
  2. This whole post is horrible. How can you write such an article when people completely tormenting themselves for maybe wanting to leave a toxic relationship are just trying to reassure themselves. It’s about INTENT. You get karma from the intent you put into things. If you intend to leave someone lovingly and from your heart, you’re putting that intention into the universe and that’s what you will receive. This whole thing is so off

    Posted on June 4, 2019 at 11:54 pm
    1. The whole post talks about getting back what you put out. If your intent was loving, then you’ll get the same thing back. So, maybe, someday in the future, someone will lovingly breakup with you too. So, you’re right actually. The post also says that maybe that person broke up with you in the same way in a past life and that’s why you are breaking up with them in this way now. Either way, it’s all about balancing out actions.

      Posted on June 10, 2019 at 5:34 pm
  3. Honestly I had a guy completely break my heart in highschool. I understood that what I had experienced was karma became I had met a guy while I was dating someone else and I fell after the first date with this other guy. I actually dated the guy while summer was going on and then when school came around I told the other guy I didn’t want to date him anymore and he was so angry with me. I had ended up going out with the other guy because I wanted attention from my guy at the time but he was going off everywhere else, not willing to spend time with me. Anyway the other guy spent alot of time with me. Just as I was realizing my feelings for him he broke up with me. I cried and cried and cried because I felt like he and I really did complement each other and I was starting to believe that he and I would end up married to one another. When he broke my heart it took years for me to get over it. I fantasized about what he may have felt during that time I really felt like he broke up with me because his friends didn’t approve of me dating him. I felt like his mother also didn’t approve. Well fast forward years later he contacts me on Facebook. I’m trying to not have a heart attack over it because I had spent so much time nursing my own pain. The truth was since him I had not been able to love anyone else the way I loved him. I loved him in a way that just hit the deepest areas of my heart. The love was truly real. So anyway I found out he was nursing a broken heart to. He was still too deep in it though and truthfully it hurt my heart remembering my pain from when he did it to me. I didn’t talk to him after that for a while. Then six months ago he asked if I wanted to go to lunch. I said no maybe a different time. Well a different time came. Sometime in May we got in contact with one another. We have been dating ever since then so almost a month. The way we interact with each other is obvious we really care about one another but I have been dealing with how I feel about him and how I need to let go of the past. I feel like we will be together for a while. I’m not sure how long but I know it will be longer than last time. I feel like this is actually healing the hurt that occurred the last time and I am grateful for another chance to date him. I also understand that sometimes people Break up because it’s just not their time. I feel like I had a lot of growing and maturing to go through over the years and honestly I’m glad we were not together in our younger years. I’m not sure how it would have went but I wouldn’t have the understanding that I do now concerning love. I also know that if he chose to go his own way tomorrow it would hurt me because I genuinely do love him but i would allow it because I would rather him be Happy with someone else than not be Happy with me. I also know that I fight the feeling of anger and jealousy over the fact that he was able to love someone else the way I loved him. I remember when I first saw pictures of them together I was angry because to me he didn’t look happy and they just didn’t look good together. I remember when we were younger people always said we looked good together. Now I don’t really know what to expect.

    Posted on June 24, 2019 at 2:15 pm
    1. Thanks so much for sharing your story… It’s really touching. It sounds like you have a karmic relationship with your boyfriend and you are definitely learning from each other about love. That’s a good thing. In terms of how you look together, well, I won’t say that’s irrelevant because it can actually be a clue about how well you fit with each other. And what you said about letting him be Happy no matter whether it’s with you or someone else… that’s incredible and shows your maturity. The best way to not let your heart get broken again is to not to have expectations. Be grateful for each new day you have together as a couple and take it day by day. All the best!

      Posted on June 24, 2019 at 6:01 pm
  4. yea my ex cold heartedly cheated on me twice n both times left me for different men. she treated me so bad. all i ever wanted was our love but she always pushed me away. n rejected me. im guessing she just wanted experience but is too much of a coward. we also had a family together. n children. i know i have to leave it be. but having a broken heart twice either will cause health issues or make me stronger.

    Posted on September 20, 2019 at 11:33 pm
    1. You’re so right that if you don’t let it go, it will cause health issues or make you stronger. Karma will get her, don’t worry. And as you get stronger, you’ll realize that your positive karma helped you too.

      Posted on January 13, 2020 at 4:24 pm
  5. I was in a relationship with a man, he broke up with me and got married to a girl richher than me. After 2 years of marriage, he contacted me again and said he was sorry for what he did with me. I always loved him truly, so i forgive him and started talking to him on a better note. But again he dumped me even in friendship..and now i am all lost…that how come a same person hurt me twice…he is all happy and i am the one seems there is no karma at all.

    Posted on September 22, 2019 at 7:23 am
    1. Hi Dear, sorry for my late reply. The only reason I can think of for why you had to suffer twice is because you didn’t see his true colours the first time around. From the kindness of your heart, you forgot the pain he put you through the first time and gave him an opportunity to hurt you again. He will get his karma, don’t worry. But one thing that you can immediately do is reflect on how he hurt you and how you let him into your life again to hurt you again. Then promise to yourself that you’ll never allow someone to treat you that way ever again. As soon as you wholeheartedly do this, you’ll feel the weight come off your heart and you’ll see karma in action.

      Posted on January 13, 2020 at 4:20 pm
  6. I know karma works very strongly as I have experienced it. But It is so difficult, painful to experience it yourself. My past is haunting me so much. I was very naive and innocent and didn’t know anything bout relationship and stuff. A lot of unfortunate events happened in my life and after dealing with so much of pain I got attracted towards a guy, started talking to him in college then he fell for me. He proposed me after a while and I told him I don’t want to be in a relationship I just like you and wanted to be just friends. Nothing else. Maybe I needed someone as a good friend in my life at that moment. During vacation he requested me again and again and almost everyday to please just try once and say Yes. I’ll keep you happy and so on. I don’t know why when I came back to college I said Okay. Yes. As soon as the relationship started he started sending me love messages and stuff like that. Instead of feeling happy and loved I started feeling awkward. I just couldn’t make myself feel in love with him. We never met in college like a boyfriend/Girlfriend but once pr twice we came face to face. We used to see each other from afar daily. This whole process of meeting him, liking him, and relationship stuff went for about 5 months and then I broke up with him saying that I am not in love with you and I just can’t do it. Also he was demanding more time from me to talk on cellphone because he was my senior and was not in the college now. I was not myself anymore so I decided to breakup. He got hurt. I know. After a while I met this guy in college, same year student as me who approached me and asked for friendship. I got attracted towards him and we started our friendship. Very strong friendship. We used to meet daily in the evening We watched movies together, had hundreds of evening walks, talked a lot daily, had dinners together, used to share our problems and everything. I fell for him. He was very chivalrous and nice to me. He started acting as if he was in love with me. He used to talk to me after meeting on phone too, whole night. He used to say love you to me. He did everything a boyfriend would do. This went for about 4 months, then we went out of the campus, he became intimate with me although he wanted to have sex with me but I refused at the last moment because I just didn’t feel it was right. After that night he started ignoring me. No calls, no meetings. He used to pick up sometimes for a few seconds and said he was busy. It struck me so hard that slowly I fell into depression. I couldn’t sleep for nights and for months and I couldn’t cry, I couldn’t focus on anything. Pain in my heart was so deep noone was able to cure me. I couldn’t share it with my friends, noone. I made several efforts for 4-5 months to get out of depression. He met me one or two time at the end of college time and acted as if nothing happened. After college he was very busy but used to call me to just say hi hello, do all the dirty talking and then bye take care I am busy. I was just not that kind of person who would do this. I was suffocating. I couldn’t sleep at nights. I was in so much pain I thought I won’t survive. I started having frequent thoughts to give up on life not because of him but to end up the pain and suffering i was going through. So eventually after another 3-4 months I wrote a message where I wrote I can’t continue this shit and I am a nobody to you. This is not going anywhere and Who am I to you? I don’t remember the rest of the message it was one long one. But before he could reply I blocked him from all social media platforms and phone. He had my landline number though, but.. He never called back. Maybe he tried to reach my cellphone but he never trued hard enough. He was never that into me. I just got my answer that he made me fall in love and he wasn’t in live with me although he pretended good enough. He was such a nice guy a perfect guy so how can he do this to any girl and not regret it? Why me? I never got that answer and then I shifted to a new place started fresh. After two months I called him when I got to know his grandmother died confronted him but to my surprise he blamed me for everything. He said I never gave you hopes and I never said I’ll give commitment. We were just good friends and all that shit that he said continued. I talked to him for an hour or two. He was not guilty at all. I didn’t call him back ever but I couldn’t ever tell him that you are a jerk and a very bad person and I hope karma hits you bad enough to make you realise what you did to me was so bad. Your actions never matched your words and you just moved on like a pro. As if I am and was a nobody to you. He said once when he was drunk that I can’t live without you never leave me and next day nothing. He was so confused or maybe I was dumb enough to let him hurt me so much. He was clever enough to get what he wanted. Just a fling for a while for fun! I tried moving on and Met someone after a while who I am happily in relation with. But the thing is: That college guy I was in love with, I see him in my dreams sometimes and it haunts me. I am happy in my life but my past is haunting me. I wake up with nightmares and in dreams I am confronting him anf all the people that hurt me in life. I don’t want to think of this person but somehow i think it’s all related to that senior guy whom heart I broke unintentionally. It’s karma working. That senior guy trued to reach me for almost two years but i ignored so that I don’t hurt him again. So that he could move on because he wanted to be my friemd and I know that could never happen. But the question I can’t get an answer to is: When will my karma stop haunting me? When will this suffering end? It’s been 3 years now and still it’s happening? Why me? Why? I never hurted anyone intentionally. Why? And how long will it continue? I am tired of this suffering.

    Posted on December 8, 2019 at 12:03 am
    1. Hi Dear, thanks for sharing your story. I’m so sorry that you’re suffering. The quickest way out of this is by asking for forgiveness. As I mentioned in the blog post, there are two ways to do this:
      1. Asking in person or contacting the person to ask for forgiveness
      2. Asking for forgiveness in your heart, but really truly feeling sorry about it first so you mean it
      Try it. I am convinced it will work right away. You just have to be open to see the signs that it’s working.

      Posted on January 13, 2020 at 4:15 pm
  7. I feel like it would be worse karma to string someone along in a relationship, but I am struggling to see which is worse. Do I continue to be with someone I just don’t like anymore (through no fault of their own – a stereotypical it’s not you, it’s me scenario) just so I don’t break their heart? Which karma would be worse.

    Posted on December 9, 2019 at 9:34 pm
    1. That’s a really good question. It would be worse to string him along. Speaking from experience, when you are not honest with yourself and stay in a not-so-perfect relationship just to be nice and to not break someone’s heart, you somehow end up hurting them more. You pick fights, you nitpick, you criticize them to their face or behind their back, or you end up cheating on them, just to name a few. In the end, you’re creating more karma for yourself by not being honest with yourself and with your partner.

      Posted on January 13, 2020 at 4:10 pm