Let's Talk About Friendship Breakups

Just like the end of a romantic relationship, ending a friendship can be just as difficult. There are so many emotions that come with it and processing all of them can feel like a never-ending task. It can feel almost as if you’re breaking up with a significant other, especially when a friend has been apart of your life for a long time. It’s important not to diminish the feelings that come with friendship breakups. The termination of friendships can have many causes, some known and others unknown; so how do we deal with them? How do we deal with losing a connection that at one point, we held so close to our hearts? I’m here to provide you with some coping mechanisms for a friendship breakup: 

  1. 1. Give Yourself Time to Process

    "It takes a long time to grow an old friend.” 

    -John Leonard

    Friendships are an important and meaningful part of our life. Any long-term friendship comes with memories, experiences, and sentimental exchanges. All of those things need time to move on from. Don’t expect yourself to be perfectly okay right after it happens. Give yourself time to get used to the idea of that person no longer being a key part of your life. If the friend you said goodbye to happened to be someone you did almost everything with, try to ease into doing those same activities by yourself. For example, if they were your gym partner and pushed you to your max while working out, don’t give up on going to the gym completely! Use what you started learning about exercising, research some workouts, and try going by yourself a few times a week. It may even become a stress reliever for you, and help you cope with the breakup!

  2. 2. Don't Let the Bad Moments Define Your Entire Friendship

    “Bad moments don’t make bad friends.”

    -Unknown

    If your friendship breakup was a nasty one, don’t let that taint the image of it. You were friends with that person for a reason and there were most likely some good memories made. Try to focus on remembering the good memories rather than the bad ones. People change, and because of that, relationships tend to as well. Although it may be hard to see that old friendship in the midst of everything that happened in the end, that person had qualities about them that you once liked. Give yourself peace of mind by remembering the good times. Don’t allow let the bad to take over. 

  3. 3. Spend Time with Other People

    “The great thing about new friends is that they bring new energy to your soul.”

    -Shanna Rodriguez

    Try to spend time with people in your life that empower and uplift you! The ending of this friendship doesn’t have to be the end of your social life. Get back out there and build stronger relationships with pre-existing friends and/or make new ones! Stop reminiscing on what used to be, and indulge yourself with what’s still there.

  4. 4. Recognize That This Is Part of Growing

    "Sometimes people are there for certain reasons at certain times in your life and then not there for others." 

    -Kylie Jenner 

    As we get older, the qualities that we look for in a friend change and therefore, friendships start to change as well. Your long-time friend may not have the qualities that you need in your adult life and that’s okay. Ending the friendship doesn’t mean that either of you are bad people. This is all a part of growth and maturity. The sooner you realize this, the healthier you’ll be able to cope and move on from that friendship. Use this event to make you stronger, don’t wallow in everything you “could’ve done.” Come to terms that the friendship is over and that just happens to be the best thing for both of you. Pulling apart a friendship comes with pain and sadness, but that all contributes to your growth and maturity process. 

Friendships can hold just as much emotion as romantic relationships and because of that, the ending of them can be equally heartbreaking. Don’t downplay your friendship breakup! Even if none of these 5 coping mechanisms is your style, find one that works for you! Whatever you do, don’t stay stuck in the past. Remember that every ending makes room for a new beginning.