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Signs that Your Friends Aren’t “The Ones”

During my four years in high school, I went through three major friend breakups. The first one was during freshman year when I got a text from my “best friend” that said nobody liked me and that the friends I did have were tired of having me around. After some sleuthing with my mom, we came to the conclusion that it was actually her mom that sent me those texts. Way to show your kid how to be a mature young adult, I guess?


The second time happened at the very beginning of my junior year. For some context, during this time, I had stopped eating for a few months to become what I thought would be beautiful in the eyes of a boy that I had liked in my band class (nope, even that didn’t work). I was so stressed out all of the time that at night when I went to bed, I would feel extremely tired but my mind was racing which kept me up into the early morning hours. Because of this, I was very irritable: getting annoyed when I had to repeat something and getting mad when people didn’t see my way. Now, you might be thinking that I was just being a plain b*tch which is what my group of friends also thought. However, they didn’t notice that my lunches at school consisted of just water and a granola bar or that I dropped almost forty pounds in a month and a half. Instead, they just noticed my temper.


The morning of a huge football game with our rival school, I asked one of my friends in that clique if they liked a specific person. I talked to this individual alone because I was curious; there was no other reason, I especially wasn’t trying to play matchmaker. Later that day as I was getting my royal blue face paint on, I received dozens of Facebook messages in a group chat from a whole bunch of people asking why I can’t keep secrets, why I am a terrible person, why I call people dramatic, etc. I tried messaging a few of them separately and they replied… in the group chat. One girl even told me, “You’re a b*tch and you deserve this.”


Imagine being 16 years old, having an eating disorder for a guy that is “afraid of widths” (actual quote), being stressed out, and losing the people you hang out with most in the course of 12 hours.


I remember one of my good friends, Ava, reading me the messages that kept coming in as I drove us to the game. I don’t normally cry in front of people, but I was bawling my eyes out. “Allie, I can’t do this anymore,” she said. “You’re so upset. I don’t want to make anything worse.”


When we got to the game, I saw the group of my so-called “friends” huddled around one phone, telling each other what to write. Meanwhile, my notifications kept pinging.


One of them messaged me privately afterwards and said that he wasn’t upset at me; he just wanted to fit in with the crowd. I was heartbroken.


The next morning, we had a district marching band show where our school district’s news crew came. If you search the deep web, you can find a shot of me crying during our field show.


I eventually forgave two of them, and they are pretty close friends of mine today. They told me that the other twowho have done the same thing to others after meplanned on attacking me online (that’s the only way to describe it), but they just needed a reason to do so. Apparently, me asking my friend who he liked was worth the cyberbullying.


My last major friend break up happened at the very end of my senior year. She had been through a lot, and I had been with her through it since I met her in our sophomore year English class. I thought I was a pretty good friend to her and she was a very good friend to me, so it was a little surprising that we split up after a little over two years.


Before our senior year had begun, she began to hang out with a different crowd. Her new friends weren’t bad people at all. They just liked way different things than I didwhich is okaybut I didn’t fit in. I guess you could say I was a little jealous, but not overly so. I still spent a lot of time with my bestie. We were in marching band together, and I was going to be the maid of honor in her wedding. I spent a lot of time at her house and got to know her family really well.


I’m not going to go into detail about what happened, but I remember that Prom happened right after it. I remember seeing her having a blast on the dance floor and looking stunning in her red dress. In the course of a year, we went from talking every day, to sort of talking every once in a while, to not talking at all because of anger. There are some days where I miss talking to her and where I do miss talking to her family because they’re awesome. Right now, she’s married to an amazing man and is a new mommy to a very cute baby. Even though things ended roughly with us, I’m glad for our friendship because she did help me through a lot of things (including my previously mentioned eating disorder), and she was a major factor in my decision to change my major from nursing to social workbecause you don’t need to be a nurse to help others through difficult times.


So, because I know that everyone has struggled trying to find where they fit in a group of people, I’ve compiled a list of things to look out for.


1. They are backstabbers.

This one is pretty obvious. If your “friends” talk bad about you behind your back but act nice to your face, you should really ditch them. Even in college, there are going to be grown-ass adults that will do this. If you’re the type that can just cut them off entirely and ignore them, good for you. If you’re the type to call them out on their BS, more power to you. If you’re like me who wants a whole bunch of friends, regardless of what they may think of you because your self-worth is pretty low, you can try to distance yourself a little from them. Even if there are some that have nothing good to say, there are always more who love everything about you and will stand by your side through anything!


2. There’s a lack of communication.

If you have a problem with what someone is doing, you really need to sit down and have a talk with them. Sure, it may be awkward, and, sure, they may be offended, but it will most likely make them work on whatever bothers youwhether they are very bossy or they said something that didn’t come out right. I’m sure they would much rather have you talk to them about it versus cyberbullying them before they had a chance to work on it.


3. They don’t notice the little things.

I’m sure you, or someone you know, has had something going on in your life where it affected you physically and mentally. Sometimes, a bear hug from your besties or a late night deep talk is all you need. However, if your clique isn’t noticing a change in your physical appearance nor a change in your behavior due to something that’s going on, maybe it’s time to reevaluate your standing with those people.


4. They are a spitting image of their family.

No, I’m not talking about if your bestie looks just like their parents. I’m talking about maturity and behavior. If your friend’s mom does not act her age and enjoys drama and your friend also enjoys drama, chances are that mother and daughter will team up and create the drama that 12-year-olds love.


5. They are starting to distance themselves.

If you notice that your bestie is starting to hang out with other people more than with you, don’t do everything in your power to try and stop it. Trying to make them hang out with you will make you seem clingy, and it’s much better to eventually become acquaintances than to have them blocked on everything because a friendship ended so badly. Perhaps your friendship with them was only meant to last for so long; growing as a person means growing out of friends (sometimes).


6. Your mom doesn’t like them.

My mom has always been there for me through everything. Sometimes you just need to rant. In that case, rant to Mom! She will probably tell you what you really need to hear, even if you don’t want to hear it. Personally, Mama K has always known who my real friends were from the start. And if I had listened to her, it would have saved me a lot of heartache.


Sometimes, friendships end because they just weren’t good friends, but sometimes friendships end because of a change of interests. Either is okay, but it is important to know when the people you thought you were going to talk with forever end up being the people you talk to never. Especially when going to college, it can be difficult to try and fit in the crowd, regardless of who’s in it. For your sanity and everyone else’s, be cognizant of those around you. Choose the friends that love you through everything and aren’t afraid to (politely) put you in your place when you need it. And most importantly, be the friend that they need in return.




Allie is a senior at Winona State, majoring in Social Work and minoring in Child Advocacy Studies. If a professional were to ask her what her goals in life were, she'd probably tell them that she wants to work in a high school helping teens. However, her less-professional goals are to own a Tesla and to shop exclusively at Target and Ikea. In her free time, Allie can usually be found scrolling through TikTok and fighting social injustices, both of which are known to make her late to work.
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