Like many others, friendship means a lot to me. I don’t take much in my life lightly, friendship being no exception. Friends are the family that you get to choose; your ride or dies essentially. I’m sure we can all attest to the fact that it sucks when a friendship ends, but what about when it’s not quite done?
The friendship that’s in limbo… you’re labeled as besties to the outside world, but on the inside, you feel a disconnect. Maybe you aren’t as close as you used to be? Can’t bring yourself to end it because you’ve been friends for so long?
This is all an attribute of growing up.
We’ve always heard that “friends grow apart” and much as you deny that it’s going to happen, it happens. As you grow and ultimately become busier, sometimes friends tend to take a back burner. (Sad, I know). When you start graduating and jumping into careers, juggling professional and romantic relationships, friendships can get muddled down deep.
It’s perfectly okay to grow up and grow apart. It’s a normal part of life and you shouldn’t be made to feel bad for doing so (and your bestie shouldn’t either). If you have a friend who is understanding of this, this is nothing but a bump in the road; something to make your already strong friendship stronger. If someone is not understanding of this, then maybe it’s time to make a few revisions.
If you find yourself afraid to lose your friend based on how much history you have, it’s important to know why you are holding onto friendship. Is it because you’re comfortable or do they actually contribute to your well-being? Much like relationships, find a friend that you can grow with. You don’t want to keep a friend that’s toxic. If your friend is always intentionally making you feel bad about yourself, they’re not worth having around. Period. No matter how long you’ve been friends.
I’ve learned that good friendships require a certain level of communication. If you’re feeling disconnected and lonely, let them know. Maybe the both of you can work towards making each other feel valuable. If you decide that it’s worth trying to mend, you have to actively work towards it.
If it comes down to having to let your friendship go, please let it go. Now, no one said that this is an easy process, but ultimately, you’ll be okay. You know the phrase “time heals everything”? That person must’ve been onto something because this is true. Losing someone that once meant a lot to you is pretty difficult and is a huge life change. It’ll take some time to get adjusted. I know that it hurts, and honestly, it’ll probably hurt for a while, but ultimately it’s for the best. I stopped being friends with someone after about 6 years of friendship and it genuinely felt like a break up.
So just like any other break up, surround yourself with positive people and good vibes to try to get through it. Think about it this way; you would want what’s best for your friend, and maybe you all aren’t best for each other anymore, but you’ll always care for them. Focus on what makes you happy and eventually you’ll find a friend who you’re able to grow with. I promise.