In my experience, I’ve learned that friendships can
have a natural tendency to go through different
stages. At one moment you’re both super close and
telling each other everything, but then a few years
later, you just chat and see each other once in a
There are many reasons for these changes in the
friendship dynamic… one getting married while the
other is still single; one taking on a totally different
career path from the other; one having children
while the other has no children and so on.
Even though these changes can be upsetting for one
or both people, it is a natural and healthy change in
the friendship. We are all growing and evolving as
individuals, so what we may have been interested in
before may not be what we are interested in now.
However, putting all of that aside, there are a few
moments in life where a breakup with a friend may
be in order. When we find ourselves questioning
whether we need to breakup with a friend, it can be
very difficult decision to make. So, here I have
outlined five signs where it may be time to breakup
with your friend:
1. They’re critical of you. Do they criticize the way you
dress? Do they put you down for not doing
something “perfect”? That being said, do they talk
badly about you to other people?
2. They seem to want to “compete” with you rather
than support. Do they make comments to you that
highlight how they “did that better”? Did they manage
to accomplish something, but then put you down for
not doing the same? Do they try to take up your
interests or hobbies in a way to try to “beat you” in
3. They’re users. Are they always asking you to do
them a favor? Do they owe you quite a bit of money,
but keep making excuses to not pay you back? Are
they always coming to you looking for help but they
are never there for you when you need help?
4. They try to make moves on your partner — or they
start dating your ex without discussing it with you
first. Actions like this are a reflection of how much
they truly value your friendship.
5. They lie to you — a lot. A few little lies is one thing,
but when there are many, it can really negatively
effect the genuineness of the friendship. If you are
the type of person that values honesty, vulnerability
and creating depth in your relationships then having
a friend that chronically lies isn’t going to support
you in that.
6. They don’t really support you. When you are going
through a difficult time, are they there for you? Do
they provide you with a good listening ear? Do they
support you in your goals? Do they “cheer you on” in
your endeavors and ask you how you’ve been doing?
Finally, ask yourself the following questions: Why am
I friends with this person? What do I gain by being
friends with this person? What do I enjoy when being
friends with this person?
If you can’t really answer those questions and a few
or all of these five signs are true for you, then a
legitimate breakup may be in order.
Ultimately, remember this: Our friendships are a
reflection of who we are. As we are growing and
evolving as human beings, we may realize that some
aspect of ourselves is no longer serving us. As a
result, we may find ourselves needing to let friends
go as well. It may involve creating some distance to
give ourselves space to grow or it may involve
needing to set boundaries for ourselves and
“breaking up” with that friend. Either way, both are a
natural aspect to our growth.
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