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You hate to see your female friend suffer in a bad relationship, but you still haven’t figured out a way to tell the girl her boyfriend is a douche. Since everyone else is staying mum about situation even though she’s been hurt several times, you feel it would be wrong to keep your mouth shut. She may already know her boyfriend is a douche and is just waiting for outside confirmation, or she could be in denial. In either case, you’re best off being honest and using any or a combination of these four ways to tell a girl her boyfriend is a douche.

The “You’re too good for him” approach. Your female friend is smart, witty, charming and beautiful—and way too good to be dating a douche. Start with compliments to soften her up and gently note that she deserves someone who is equally smart, witty and charming and the boyfriend she’s with just ain’t it.

The “You’re different when he’s around” angle. If you friend seems to lose all her smarts, wit and charm when her boyfriend is around, that is definitely an angle you can pursue to tell a girl her boyfriend is a douche. Tell her how her personality becomes squashed like a dead bug the moment he walks into the room. Her actions clearly show she’s not happy and carefree like she used to be when this douche bag is around.

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Bring up his behavior. The boyfriend is probably offering examples of his doucheness all the time, so let his actions speak for themselves. Take note the next time he does something really jerky, like standing her up or taking her car to Toledo without asking. Then point out the douchey behavior and ask if a kind, compassionate human being would ever pull such a stunt.

Be persistently gentle and gently persistent. Denial can reach deeply, especially when a girl wants to claw onto a dream of romance instead of facing the reality that her boyfriend is a douche. You need to be persistent. Don’t go off about his doucheness every time she brings up his name, a move that could backfire and make her more tied to him than ever. The next time she’s crying about being stood up or not having a car to get to work, remind her it’s because she’s dating a douche.