Break ups aren’t reserved for romantic relationships only. Friends break up too and often the heartache is worse.
I’ve had my fair share of fading friendships in the past but, back in school when we were bound to cross paths (ie, a lecture hall, classrooms, the library), it was much easier to mend a rift. It was also easier to become mortal enemies, but that’s a post for another day. Now as a full-fledged post-grad adult, when a friendship goes South it usually slaps on some sunscreen and stays there.
Maintaining friendships at this age is hard. Unless you’re work buddies and can catch up at lunch, you have to actually put in some effort to spend time together. Between work, bills, and romantic dating, friend dates seem to go from every weekend, to once a month, to “girl I’ll see you when I see you” real fast. And when the friendship is over, it’s really over. It’s not hard to avoid someone you would have never seen anyway.
Regardless of the waning time spent together, friends still hold a special place in your heart. After all it was your friend who helped nurse you back to health after a f*ckboy sucked your soul from your body, and it was a friend who gave you her last spare tampon when your cycle popped up much earlier than expected at an event. Losing a friend for whatever reason can leave you with a gaping hole in your chest. If you find yourself with one less friend, here are a few ways to recover.
You can give them a call
If your friendship faded or ended over something small, a very adult thing to do would be to give your ex-buddy a call and talk through whatever issues drove a wedge between you. Even if you leave the friendship behind in the end, you’ll have feedback to help you improve your relationships moving forward.
Note: It takes a pretty mature person to do this. I’ve only been brave enough to do it a few times myself, but each time I left feeling better than before I picked up the phone.
Mute them on social media
Muting is the new blocking.
It hurts to see updates from someone you no longer talk to. You want to congratulate them on that new job, or tell them their contour looks amazing, but…you can’t. You also can’t block them because, well, no one likes to be blocked and it would be pretty awkward if they ever thought of reaching out to work things out. This very predicament is why we were blessed with the “mute” option on social media. You get all the perks of blocking with none of the drama. Hooray!
Distract yourself with something “fun”
When you’re a single adult you really only have three options here. Happy Hour, Netflix, or Tinder dates. Pick one and forget all about what’s-her-name.
Check up on old friends
Losing a friend can often be the wake up call you need to tend to the rest of your friendships. Give your friends a call, make time to see them, and let them know you care- even if you don’t see each other as often.
Don’t beat yourself up
Most relationships aren’t meant to stand the test of time. People have their seasons in your life (and you in theirs), and it’s ok if a friendship ends. It’s confusing and painful and it sucks…but…it’s ok. Just like with any broken heart, time will heal the cracks and you’ll at least be able to say “thanks for the memories”…..even if, in the end, they weren’t so great.