Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Have You Ever Had a Friendship Break-Up?

I got into a conversation with someone the other day about friends and how exactly those relationships feel. We were chatting about the whole "It is better to have a small group of close friends than a large group of people you can't rely on" and how it works in our lives.
I'm an introvert, we are talking I get super shy and start feeling ill if I need to introduce myself to people. I find this hilarious as I've worked in customer service my whole life which requires me to deal with people. I just face my job as I'm not going to have to deal with these people ever again so who cares. With trying to make friends though it is harder and scary for me because I want this person in my life a good 95% and I don't want to freak them out with my weirdness or some other thing about myself. Yet once I know someone and I'm friends with them I'm all in. I mean all or nothing kind of situations.
I'm the same when I'm in a relationship but that is here nor there.
My mother likes to inform me I love too much. That I will some how open myself up too much and end up getting burned in the end.

I've always had a pretty small group of friends, it grows in size as people get added but then usually dwindles down for one reason or another.
Friendships are a lot of work and sadly if someone is not willing to put forth the effort then the relationship dwindles and dies. I hate to say this but most of my friendships have met this end because of guys.
Girl meets guy.
Girl becomes obsessed with guy.
Girl decides guy is worth all her time.
Friends become tired of being either dragged along on dates or tossed over for guy.
Guy dumps girl.
Girl goes looking for friends and has none.
I'm guilty of parts of this too.
My favorite part of that little story is when the girl moves in with guy and even though they live together the girl HAS TO SPEND EVERY WAKING MOMENT WITH GUY.
Screw friends, I got this fella.
I'm sorry.....didn't you see him last night and this morning? Is he going to disappear if you don't spend one evening with him? If he is going to disappear I think you have bigger issues.
I've had a few friendships that were ruined because of a guy or because someone in the duo didn't put forth the effort needed for the relationship to work. For someone who is afraid of meeting people this can sometimes result in periods of time where there are no friends around and you learn to adapt and make new friends.

Since moving back I've rekindled a few friendships, some didn't last the 2nd (or 5th) time around, and some have flourished. I think as you get older you realise how important having friends is and that you need to WORK on them.
I think a few key points in friendship is to sort of treat is as if you are in a relationship.
Make plans: don't expect the person to always be free right when you are then be upset if they can't join you.
Keep those plans: if something comes up tell the person, don't wait till that person contacts you to suddenly be like "Oh shit, I'm sooo sorry I either a) forgot b) made other plans or c) can't do it till later now"
Be Honest: If you don't feel like hanging out with someone then tell them when they ask rather then blowing them off later.
Try: You have to try, any type of relationship is work, and if you continue to blow someone over then you might have to try a little harder to prove you want the friendship.

I've done this luck....but it works
I think you also sometimes need to stop and look at the friends you have. Do you have friends that would drop anything for you to come rushing to your aid? Do you have friends that will show up to any event they are invited to because they know it is important to you? Do you have friends that don't expect to talk every day but will listen when you need to bitch?
If so...these are your real friends and if you dick them over well....they are going to get tired real fast and then when you need someone they wont be around.
Now, do you have friends that bring nothing but drama? Do you have friends who wont show up for shit you invite them to because of one excuse or another? Do you have friends who expect you to be there for them but wont be there for you?
If so.....get rid of these people because they are not worth your time.

There is a great article talking about Friendship Break-Ups and how they can happen. I realised I've been through some if not all of those situations. It's hard to face these types of things and realise that they will happen. You don't want to think that it is possible to break up with your best friend but it happens, it sucks, and it can sometimes be preventable.

Have any of you had a friendship break up? Are you going through a moment right now where you feel the other doesn't care? Have you ever been the cause of the break-up without realising it till it was too late?

Til next time lovelies


Anonymous said...

Preach on lady! I've been to the end of several friendships because we had either gorwn apart or things happened. It's always sad but sometimes it has to happen. I have a great group of core friends who are there when I need them most. I enjoy making new friends but it's hard because I don't want to feel like I'm wasting my time.

Anonymous said...

I had what you would call a friendship break-up about 4 years ago. It had become a toxic friendship and I decided to accept the inevitable. Since then I've made some wonderful friends and I agree with all the tips above. I'm a big believer in "friend dates" they are as important to friendships as they are to relationships!

Great post!

Tarole said...

Love this. It's been two years since moving to Hawaii and I still find it hard to make friends out here. Finally I have a good few (litereally like three or four) that I continuously hang out with and can rely on, but I've had my fair share of friendship break-ups (and yes mostly over guys) and I'd say they are just as bad if not worse than boyfriend break ups. Girls can be so nasty.

But I agree with you and think with age you realize who you want to keep around and who you don't :)


Jess Casey said...

I love this post.

I have had many friendship break ups. The ones that have mattered dabbled back into my life and we have since discussed how we had been growing differently. I have also had convenience friends and party friends. Granted that they are good to have and always there as long as you are on the same path but they are not staple friends. I once read or heard somewhere that any person can honestly only count on one hand how many "true" friends one can have. And on that one hand, only 2 fingers are used. :)

Anonymous said...

i had a very long history of a fairweather friendship with my ex-bff whom i met when in was in grade 7.

she was always that type of girl -- ditching friends for guys. i know we're all guilty of it at some point but many of us learn from our mistakes... she didn't. she dated this one guy for 3yrs who treated her like CRAP and she still ditched her friends so she didn't have any. i was the only one who stuck around and although she was hardly there for me, i figured if she was happy, then that was important enough to overlook that.

he dumped her and then i got my friend back. he was an asshole too so no tears were wasted on my part over the breakup.

then she met another guy and she straight up told me that she learned her lesson and will never make that mistake again. fast forward to 6months later and i was back with a fairweather friend again.

this time it was worse though; my father passed away and she didn't even call me. not once. didn't show up or give me any support and i was devastated. that was a turning point for me; i mean, i get that you're all caught up in your life and love and that's great but damn, when a friend's family member passes away, you put your boyfriend aside and BE THERE FOR HER. that changed our dynamic and i stopped calling and making any sort of effort.

life goes on and i found out i was pregnant. she was suddenly in my life again and was gung-ho about helping me with the shower etc etc. the DAY BEFORE THE SHOWER, she calls me to tell me that she can't make it because her boyfriend's mom is going to be in town and they're going out for dinner. the shower was 12pm, not at 6pm and yet she still couldn't tear herself away from him for 2hrs and STILL be home on time 4hrs before the dinner.

anyway, things went south quick after that. we ended up having a huge fight about "me not accepting her boyfriend" (?????????) and she couldn't be friends with someone who didn't accept her boyfriend.

that was 4 years ago and i haven't spoken to her since.

it broke my heart because i felt like she was my sister but i guess her priorities and feelings about our friendship were different.

oh well.

i'm sorry this went on for as long as it did!!