I haven’t heard songs or poetry dedicated to friendship breakups nearly as much as romantic ones — but they hurt just as bad.
During my senior year of high school, I broke it off with my best friend. We had been attached at the hip all throughout high school. Sophomore year, she stopped talking to me for no reason and I was confused and hurt.
That summer, I reached out via Facebook and we rekindled our friendship. The start of junior year was the best year of our friendship and we hung out at every opportunity. We got coffee, chatted, did homework and bonded.
Our friendship was so special because I was able to share my dreams and receive encouragement. Despite our differences, we worked well together. She was calm and never stressed easily whereas I frequently stressed out, but she would always calm me down.
While our friendship was not constantly perfect, and at times toxic, we balanced each other out. We bonded over the “After” book series, One Direction, Taylor Swift, and other things. We even planned to move to Los Angeles together and chase after our dreams — me wanting to become an actress and she wanted to pursue a career in law enforcement.
That year’s plans consisted of Dunkin Donuts, hanging at the Harold Washington Library and exploring Chicago. The summer before my senior year I started my YouTube channel and my friend was so encouraging. Senior year started off great, but when I came back from a birthday trip I noticed that she was distant, and my thought process was to do everything in my power to avoid getting hurt again.
Admittedly, I handled things immaturely and I decided to cut her and our friend group off entirely. But months later, I was heartbroken over our friendship. I missed her and reminisced over our city adventures. I wanted to go back to how things were, but I ruined it.
That winter, I texted her to apologize, and she was not having it. I was devastated and hurt because I felt like I was at fault. I cried often and listened to tons of Adele, the closest friendship breakup music I could relate to. Like a romantic breakup, my body ached and I felt like my heart was broken.
Similar to a breakup with a partner, my way of coping was to find a replacement, a friendship rebound. I tried to find ways to make my new friend like my ex one because I wanted my old friendship back. But, I realized I couldn’t force these expectations onto someone new because it isn’t fair to that person.
I frequently talked about the friendship breakup, and everyone around me was fed up. I felt like Carrie Bradshaw from “Sex and the City” after Big broke her heart (again).
Of course, there was some drama, mostly with the other girls in our friend group. One even had it out for me and she tripped me, mocked me and even erased my name from a club sign up sheet. Not once did my ex-friend try defending me.
As summer approached, we reconciled after she reached out to me. We talked things over and I thought things would return to normal. When I saw her next, I decided to give her a book about friendship along with a letter about how much she meant to me.
When I tried to give it to her she walked right past me with the rest of our group. I realized she was hiding our friendship from them. Even after graduation, she continued to hide our friendship, despite how badly I wanted things to be like old times again.
Sometimes when relationships crumble, the pieces are big enough to put back together and the friendship can be saved. But, with my friend, the pieces were too small and fragmented, and we could not go back. I wish more artists would talk about friendship breakups because they are so painful, maybe even more so than romantic breakups.
I went through many stages of emotions, much like I would have with my romantic partner. While my ex-best friend and I are still acquaintances, we are not close friends. I’ve learned to accept that there is no way of recreating a friendship like the one we had.