Friendship Fallouts & Moving On

As someone who was rather reserved, I struggled to form friendships during my first semester at Brandeis. I latched onto the first few people who were in my orientation group and we developed a close bond within a matter of months. I became content and complacent with this small yet comfortable group of friends. We shared many ROFL moments and late night conversations about anything and everything. We hung out several days a week and often ate lunch and/or dinner together.

However, this closeness only made the fallout all the more drawn out and agonizing. I realized that my needs and online communication style were incompatible with theirs. I struggled with my delicate mental state, fear of losing those important to me, and the realization that sometimes, trying does more damage. Ultimately, we chose to walk away from the friendship but remain cordial if we do see one another. During months that followed, I closed myself off from the world as I grieved the loss of my former friendships. I stared in envy at jubilant friends eating or chatting together and stayed in my dorm room when I didn’t have class. I didn’t make an effort to reach out to others to develop new friendships. In all honesty, I was hurting and fearful of the world around me.

Fortunately, with a restful winter break and the start of a new semester, I was able to open up more, let others in, and form new friendships. I had mostly healed by then and accepted that although the fallout was unfortunate, it taught me more about independence, self-love, and balance.

broken heart hanging on wireWhat really facilitated my healing process was investing more time and energy into existing relationships, learning to be comfortable alone at events, and devoting more time and effort into clubs. I would also indulge in chocolate, or a movie, or YouTube videos in order to elevate my mood. Every day, I remind myself of what I accomplished as opposed to focusing on what I still have to do. Remaining grounded in the present has prepared me to face tomorrow with a healthier and happier state of mind. Last but not least, I attended therapy sessions as often as I felt I needed to. It allowed me to continuously utilize and try out different techniques for processing the fallout. I can now move forward with the knowledge that I can and will heal from this.