Learning when to cut the cord of friendship

Young women whispering behind another woman's backAs a kid we are taught “make new friends, but keep the old ones”.  Sometimes, though, new or old it becomes time to kick some people off the love train and let the friendship die down.  When the season of that friendship dies, instead of being something that gives you life it becomes draining putting your peace in chaos.  As with all relationships though, ending a friendship is tough and the difficulty involved can lead you to dragging a friendship along half dead for way too long.  So when do you finally say enough is enough when it comes to friends??  Here are some things to consider when you are deciding if the friendship is still the loving and nurturing relationship that you need it to be.

Start with you: Without questions ending some friendships should be a no brainer but more often than not you can sum up the situation with “it’s complicated”.  Perhaps you feel used or that you are not growing in the same direction, but if you put all the blame on the friend you may skip over somethings you did or failed to do that caused the rift.  By taking an honest review of yourself, who you are now, where you what to be, what you are offering as a friend you may discover that they are a shitty friend because you are one.  Even if that is not the case you may connect with some of the reasons the friendship is lingering and find a way to salvage it by doing the work.  Doing so lets you put an end to the friendship that was and get started on a friendship reborn that gives both people more of what they need.

It’s okay to love someone from afar: We can get so lost in people and their problems that we can’t see the forest from the trees.  In life it is as important to take care of ourselves as it is to take care of other people.  When being a friend becomes a life consuming duty with little appreciation or reciprocation it may be time to take a step away.  You love best when you love yourself and any friendship that cannot honor that may not truly be a friendship in the first place.

Belief your past does not have to be your future: As friendships develop at all points in our lives it can be hard to let go those that were critical in getting us to where we are today.  Honoring a friend that loved and supported us is a part of life but it cannot be the reason you put your head in the sand when destructive behavior pops up.  You cannot take away credit for the importance of a friendship in the past but sometimes the past is the past for a reason.

Trust your heart and your head: When thinking about ending a friendship your head and heart have to have a meeting of minds.  Either can be blindsided from the history of the friendship and deceive you into staying longer than you should.  Sometimes the truth is not in all the blatant facts or pulls of your heartstrings but in the quiet whisper of your soul.  Let both sides make their arguments and then trust your soul to weigh the difference.

Either get all out and or get all in: The older you get you realize no one is perfect, not your friend (or ex-friend) and certainly not you.  This certainty can lead to a straddling of the fence because you don’t want to risk the loss and find yourself without someone to fill an important role in your life.  A friendship requires a lot of you and the other person when it is done right.  If you are not willing to invest the energy or time really you are out anyway.  Time is our most valuable resource so don’t waste it where you don’t want it to go when it can bloom beautifully someplace else.


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