How do you feel when a friendship ends?
Sad, annoyed, upset, angry?
Or like me – disappointed and weird?
I’m not talking about when you’ve had a huge argument with a friend, or even when you’ve simply outgrown each other naturally.
I’m talking about when one of you purely wants to end the friendship and the other doesn’t.
I’ve been on both sides of the coin with this.
I had a friend that I would have called a very close friend and one day I noticed that she never fulfilled our plans and barely spoke to me anymore. When I asked her about this she simply said that she didn’t want to be friends anymore as she felt we didn’t have anything in common these days.
It was true, and fair enough. I still felt annoyed and rejected but there was nothing I could do.
More recently though, I have had to end a friendship.
I don’t know if I handled it correctly. First, I just slowly pulled back on communication, hoping to eventually stop and for her not to notice or not to care about it.
This didn’t work. Every time I replied she would message me non-stop and then when I would stop replying, she would question it, or in some cases, ignore that I wasn’t responding and continue to message me.
I decided to take drastic action and stop responding completely.
I felt awful during this phase, however, I know that when someone doesn’t reply to me, I think ‘screw them’ and stop messaging.
Again, this didn’t happen. She slowed her messages for a while but then, as if on cue, she bombarded me with messages wanting to know why I was ignoring her.
It was a hard situation because the two adults I discussed my predicament with told me not to respond. (I mean, I am also an adult but I’m talking about advice from people 40yrs+).
So I didn’t respond and kept quiet.
The ‘why are you ignoring me’ and messages created for attention-seeking purposes lasted around a month. Then she inboxed my mum on Facebook to try and get me to respond; I’d had enough.
I messaged and told her all the reasons I didn’t want to be friends with her.
I felt awful. I felt relieved. I felt free.
I felt like a bad person.
Un-mutually ending a friendship is such a strange and sad situation to be in. Especially when a friend hasn’t done anything big wrong that you could be angry with them for, and instead you have realised that you just don’t get along, don’t have the same values or interests and so on anymore.
Ending friendships in these circumstances makes everyone involved feel awful. One friend feels rejected and the other feels like a nasty person.
So, I just wanted to ask you guys… have you ever been through this? What was it like for you and how do you feel about the situation now?
Let me know in the comments or on Twitter.