How do you break-up with a friend? I mean, we all know how to break-up with a lover…but, what is the proper way to end a friendship? I was faced with this dilemma last week.
I won’t go into too many details, but I will say, that last week, I officially ended a friendship with someone I once considered like a sister to me. I am not someone who lingers in muck for too long. The feeling of staleness can put the period on an end of a sentence for me. I hate the feeling and I don’t wallow in it for long.
I will say that I had known this particular friend for approximately 10 years. She and I had shared laughs, secrets, tears, and adventures. But, the past year or so, there has been a separation between us. It was obvious that we were both moving in different life directions, and, possibly, that we had both lost the desire to keep working at our friendship.
But, that’s it isn’t it? Friendships, just as with any relationship, require work, commitment, and dedication. If the time is not put in, a friendship will die, just as any relationship would…and, perhaps, should.
Who is to say that friends are supposed to be forever? Every person I know today might not be the people I will need to know for where I’m going in my life (and vice-versa). We were good friends to each other for the seasons we were meant to be good friends to each other. But, then, those seasons came to an end.
I tried to honestly discuss the elephant in the room last week and just lay the cards on the table. I did this, I thought, because I wanted to let her know that I did value our time as friends, and that I thought she (and our friendship) deserved an explanation as to why I thought our friendship had come to an end. I thought silence would just be cowardly and wrong.
This is all hard to describe without putting the details into cyberspace, but, some things should be left unsaid. What I will say is, she DID NOT take my point well - AT ALL! I was bombarded with a tirade of insults! Thus, me being the fighter that I am, I slung mud right back at her. Instead of having an adult discussion, we became little more than alley cats with claws on the ready. I had to put a stop to it, so I simply stopped. If I continued, I would have hurt her feelings in ways that are unacceptable, since I did, at one time, consider her a friend.
Some people will say that you don’t end a 10-year friendship. I will say, there were certain situations that arose this past year that proved to each of us, that we had lost respect for each other, didn’t really like each other, and didn’t truly know each other.
I have been left wondering just what was our friendship - really? A silent charade? Seems like it.
After I digested the bitterness of the ending…I felt renewed. I was not, nor have not been, very sad at all about the loss of our friendship, but more relieved that I no longer have to deal with the elephant that it had become. That in itself has reinforced to me that I made the right decision. The fact that we both felt the need to say such hurtful things to each other proved to me that our friendship had been dead for quite some time because we had both, silently, allowed so much resentment to build up…I was simply the one who had the courage to burry it.
So, I don’t look back on our friendship with a curled lip and rolling eyes. I remember our good times with a smile…it is okay…endings are okay. I believe that sometimes, you have to clean house to make room for new furniture - so, I’m making room.