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Thursday, 8 December 2016

The friendship breakup


Breaking up with a boyfriend isn't something I have ever experienced, being that Dan was my first and only real partner, but I get the idea of how ending a relationship works especially having watched my friends go through many over the years. They can be pretty rough to deal with, especially when you have been together such a long time. But breaking up with a friend is something that most of us don't talk about. Friendships are much alike relationships, some even more intense than between two partners. Your friend is a person you share every minor detail of your life with, some you let in and tell your deepest darkest secrets too, ones you might not even tell your partner. They know about your faults, your insecurities your past and your present. When something bad or good happens, you know that your BFF is one of the first to be called, you enjoy sharing in each others joy, you laugh together, cry together, share experiences together, the love runs pretty darn deep. 

So when your friendship changes or ends this can be pretty hard going for both parties. Sometimes, naturally, friends drift apart, you start to talk less to each other, perhaps you start making new friends, trying new things, just becoming different people to the ones you both were before. When this happens the very glue that made your friendship stick starts to deteriorate and before long the relationship can become something so far from what is was to begin with.

There are a few types of friendship breakups, some that end naturally, with no discussion, and what you had just fizzles out, and some where things end really, really badly. Passive aggression, arguments back and forth on text, screaming at each other, saying spiteful, hurtful things, this can and does happen. Like all relationships, disagreement is natural but sometimes there is no coming back from what was said, and sadly sometimes there is no going back to what you once were.
Then there are friendships that end with no resolve, sometimes a friend can just phase you out, or even completely cut you out of their life, ignore your texts, avoid you, delete your entire existence, those can be the worst to deal with, because there is no real resolve. Social media makes ending friendships so much harder than ever before. Seeing 'Ex friends' on mutual friends Facebook page, tagged in photos can be tough, but nothing hurts like seeing old memories pop up of you and your friend together when times were really good. We are plagued with our past and this can cause terrible anxiety, it certainly does for me.

Of all the things I am anxious about in my life, the ending of past friendships is what is most difficult to deal with. Questions about who is responsible, where did it go wrong, why did it end?  These all run through my mind continuously. As a person, I have always needed validation, I need to be needed, I care so deeply that sometimes I overstep the mark into territory that perhaps is not my place to step. 

Are there things I regret about how I handled my friendships? Absolutely.  Was I at times not the best person or friend I could have been? Most probably. Sometimes I sit down and think that I am a terrible, awful, person. Maybe I can't keep friends, maybe I am too judgmental, maybe I am too sensitive...These thoughts whizz around my mind like a merry go round and leave me with a tight knot of anxiety in my chest. The battle I have with myself is hard, and it has taken me a long time to get over lost friendships. Sometimes I find myself looking through old photos, or listening to a song that sends me right back to a place in time where things were great and the guilt washes over, all over again. 

But the truth is, in the end it doesn't matter.  In life we will go through making mistakes in our personal relationships or become victim to others making mistakes, it's the circle of life, not one of us out there is perfect and that is bloody normal. Now, more than ever I am beginning to learn that some things are just meant to be, sometimes other factors in our life change who we are, the priorities we have change and the company we keep changes. It's all part of our individual growth and whether the path you are on is the right one, it is your journey to take. Unfortunately along the way we will lose people in our life, be that from the nature of death or the journey of our lives, this may sound like a load of philosophical shit but I truly believe that every single thing that happens to us, is perfectly timed and meant to happen. 

And If I could say one thing to past friends that I am no longer friends with it would be simply to wish them well, to say sorry for any bad blood, or anger that is held. There was a reason we were drawn to each other at some point in our lives and for the times we had I am grateful. Live and let live and all that malarchy.  For me, 2017 will be a year of new personal discovery and I have no doubt that I will f**k up and make some hideously bad decisions. And although my friendship breakups have been hard my past has taught me some real important stuff about myself and the friends I still have and I will always be grateful for that.

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