Ahh, the dreaded friendship breakup, although I’ve never experienced a relationship breakup I’m going to argue that a friendship breakup is harder because you never really prepare for them to happen. Dating someone always has the lingering thought that you’re either going to get married or break up but friendships are just best friends “forever” but how long can forever really last?
I wish I could say that all the people that I’ve been close with at one point are still all by my side but they aren’t, whether that be because we simply grew apart, we had a falling out or my mental health got in the way. I’ve lost my fair share of friends so far and it’s never been easy. Recently I’ve gone through losing most of my friends due to a falling out I had with my “best friend” and it’s really taken its toll. Realistically I know that I could have swept everything that happened under the rug and pretend to be fine but I just couldn’t escape the thoughts and feelings of rejection and the loss of trust I have with most of them now so I’ve chosen to distance myself. Initially, it wasn’t a choice but now I know I’m choosing to lose them, it doesn’t make it any easier but I know that my mental health will suffer more if I try to fix everything.
Also a quick side note I’m not suggesting you cut off your friendships with everyone, most friendships can be put back on track if you’re open and honest about your feelings and try to work together to make things right. This is more for those of you who have already given fixing things a shot and are still sat here without the person/people you once told everything to. Sometimes friendships don’t last and that’s okay but it doesn’t make going through losing someone any easier.
So what is my advice for going through a friendship breakup?
STICK TO YOUR GUT FEELING
It may not be easy but if its what’s best for you then you need to stick to your gut. There isn’t really a pain-free way to end a friendship. You’re going to stumble upon a photo with them and start to wish things could go back to that one time in 2013, but you aren’t the same person you were then and they aren’t either. Things may very well get better and you’ll feel like you have a stronger friendship than ever but if that doesn’t happen don’t try to chase after the past, you just have to move on and put yourself and your own happiness first. There’s a lot of pressure on friendships to last but if it’s making you unhappy, anxious or you feel like you can’t be yourself around them anymore you don’t have to stick around just to keep up with the BFF’s expectation and even though this may sound harsh if they’re having those feelings regarding their friendship with you they don’t have to stick around either.
DON’T PUT ALL THE BLAME ON YOURSELF
Personally, I know that I am partially to blame in what’s happened between me and my friends but a lot of the time I slip into the mindset that its all my fault and that I’m the problem. I have to actively remind myself that it isn’t completely my fault. I’m not suggesting you sit there and play the blame game but don’t put all that on yourself, 99% of the time it takes two for a friendship to fall apart it’s not just you! Don’t let the negative thoughts of it being your fault stick with you because that will just cause more harm than good.
YOU WILL FIND YOUR PEOPLE AGAIN
I know how hard it is to feel completely alone, the friendships you worked so hard for years or even months have disappeared and your left feeling like you don’t have the little comforting group of people surrounding you anymore. You may very well have other friends that are still there to support you and that will definitely soften the blow of losing a friend but you still have that empty feeling. Each friendship is different and you will give and gain different things from each person you know. Maybe Sarah was the perfect girl to go to if you were feeling down because she was so funny and always knew how to get your mind off it and make you feel brighter, now Sarah’s not there for you like she used to be and so when you feel down you don’t really know where to turn anymore. This isn’t a fun situation but please know that you will find other people you click with and for the time being you ’ll find ways to cope without them. When I’m feeling down and feel like I
don’t really have someone to turn to I like to pop on a stand-up comedy show or read a book for a bit to take my mind off it. You just have to find new ways to receive the support you got from the person you aren’t close with anymore.
SO WHERE DO YOU GO FROM HERE?
It’s pretty clear that I don’t have a quick fix (do let me know if you happen to find it). Sometimes friendship breakups happen and you don’t really notice as much because it happens due to life circumstances and sometimes it’s a bit tougher and you can be left feeling hurt and lost without them. All I can say is that you’re worth more than a lot of people may make you feel and you will find someone who wants to go on spontaneous holidays and have as many late night chats with you about anything and everything it may just take some time. I’ll leave you the advice my mum told me when I was going through the thick of it last year…
“You can’t expect to have everything set in place at any particular time
especially when it comes to friends, I didn’t meet most of my close
friends until I was older, its never too late to find a best friend.”
All the love.