our everyday life

How to Know if You've Lost a Friendship

by Leah Campbell

People are constantly evolving, which can lead to friendships ending without warning, notes clinical psychologist Irene S. Levine. We have all experienced a moment when we realize our friend is suddenly a stranger, yet coming to terms with the end of a friendship is never easy. Learning how to recognize the signs that a friendship is over is the only way to begin moving forward without the friend.

Pay attention to whom your friend is spending time with. If you realize that she has acquired a whole new set of friends and rarely includes you in their activities, be proactive in attempting to integrate yourself into this new social circle. Recognize awkwardness for what it is if you are not readily welcomed with open arms.

Make attempts at communication. Call and email your friend in an effort to engage in the conversations you two previously would have enjoyed. Avoid becoming accusatory if he does not immediately respond, but be aware if it seems as though communication has been cut off completely.

Extend invitations to your friend that might be hard for her to pass up. Suggest dinner at her favorite location or a hike in an area of town you know she loves. Give her several chances to spend time with you, but if her answer is that she is just too busy, understand that this may be a sign of the low priority she is placing on your friendship.

Continue to live your life as you did before. Remain friendly when you see him in public and don’t avoid favorite spots or gym classes you two used to frequent together. Pay attention to how often you ran into him previously as compared to now. If you get the sense that he is avoiding you, trust that instinct.

Ask sincere questions about her life when you do get the chance to catch up with her. Strive to remain engaged, even as your fears of a faulty friendship are seeping through. After devoting some time to what she has going on, begin to drop hints about what is new in your life as well. Gauge her interest based on how she responds to your revelations and whether she seems to be paying attention at all.

Watch his activity on social networks. If he is remaining active and engaging with others while seeming to freeze you out, it is a pretty clear sign the friendship may be over. Prepare yourself for the day when he may just delete you as a friend completely.

Tip

  • Once you come to terms with the fact that your friendship is over, compose a goodbye letter to your former friend as a way of obtaining closure for yourself. You don't have to send this letter, but writing it is a way to work through your own emotions regarding the end of this relationship.

About the Author

Living in Alaska, Leah Campbell has traveled the world and written extensively on topics relating to infertility, dating, adoption and parenting. She recently released her first book, and holds a psychology degree (with an emphasis in child development and abnormal child psychology) from San Diego State University.

Photo Credits

  • BananaStock/BananaStock/Getty Images