NEVER! Don’t tell him. Keep it to yourself or lie to him. There is never a “good” way to tell your man you love someone else.
I don’t believe that “telling your man you love someone else” is a good idea in any kind of relationship, even in a start-up phase. Why do you need to be honest to your partner in the first place about your feeling (read: love) for another man? What’s the real purpose of telling your partner this “fire” line anyway? To hurt him, YES.
Let’s see. If you somehow insist that in your relationship you apply the principle of “honesty-no matter what happens”, including telling your man you love someone else, I want to show you the following scenario:
Say, you prepare yourself well. You have chosen and practice the finest words you could possibly think or find, and take your partner to a quiet, secluded place. Then, after you talk here and there about your relationship with him or even about how great he has been, you finally fire him by saying: “… but I’m sorry, I love someone else. It’s not about you, because you’re great! It’s all about me completely. I’m sorry…”. Do you expect your man to understand you, especially if he thinks high of himself or if he thinks he has done his best for you all this time? Your man’s first reaction will be: he will freeze with confusion or in disbelief. That may last for a few seconds only. The next thing which would come to you is a series of questions from him (some of them may be unpleasant or make your ears red). If he has already had a slight “suspicious” feeling to you before or a feeling that you have somehow changed over the time, he may not be so surprised with your statement and sees it as a confirmation to his suspicion. Yet, before you realize it, your statement has directly (if not, almost instantly) attacked his dignity. Do you know what the word “dignity” means in “their world”? Everything. Your honesty hurts his dignity, and that spells disaster.
It may be different if you really want to “dispose” your man or your relationship as quickly as possible and for good, but do you really think that this is the best way to do that? I don’t think so! Well, I did that twice or thrice when I was young, but trust me, it wasn’t easy and fun at all-and as a I grow older, I know that wasn’t wise either. I always think I should have done it differently.
Your honesty-no matter how careful you choose your words-will hurt his dignity. He will remember it for a long time, and even though he seems to accept and appreciates your honesty well, the impact of it to his life is long-term. Why? Because he has accepted his defeat in the worst possible way, that is, it is conveyed by someone he loves: YOU.
So, if you loved him before, be wise and kind to him. Keep it to yourself or lie to him.