Friendships are one of those things that kind of take the sideline when it comes to the major relationships in your life. Maybe it’s because of movies showing romantic love as the ultimate relationship to cherish, or just the fact that we don’t really talk about it much as a society, but the friends you have in your life are an important relationship. Just because it’s platonic, that doesn’t mean it’s any less important.
We joke, and say friendships are like romantic relationships a lot as well, and it might be because of the fact that it’s said as a joke – but it really is. Friendships have ups, and downs, and a lot of the times arguments and disagreements happen as well. It’s how you deal with it that’s important – but this post isn’t about that. It’s about the times when you need to breakup with your friends. Yes, you read that right – a breakup.
It’s sad to say that I have a bit of experience in this, and it’s never really fun. Especially when you make the realisation that the friend you have is hurting your life, whether it’s negatively impacting your mental health, generally being toxic or just plain abusive. Those traits aren’t exclusive to those in a romantic relationship, and it’s important to take your friendships into consideration. I won’t say names, or even give enough information for people who have known me for years to guess who the person I’m about to talk about is, but I have had a toxic friendship and breaking up was fucking difficult.
It might be because we’d known each other for years, and I knew a lot about their life, their pain, dreams, life aspirations – literally years of knowledge. But they were toxic, I sometimes describe the person as a dementor purely because time with them was soul sucking. Pure negativity, dismissing my words and essentially using me as a venting tool but never giving the same energy. It got to the point where we’d stopped talking and reconnecting so many signs it was a yearly cycle – I blame it on not having a lot of childhood friends since I moved a lot as a child, so I cling to people, and sometimes it’s not worth it.
So we went through the cycle for a long time, it was embarassing, until I finally realised what was happening, and needed to end it. It was tough, and honestly I wouldn’t recommend anyone take this action lightly – cutting someone off is difficult when you actually care about them. The caring also doesn’t switch off which is just plain annoying at times.
So why tell this tale? What’s the point? Well for one, it’s to let people know that toxic friendships exist, and that sometimes you need to cut them out. Cold turkey, no remorse, just get rid of them.
As much as talking can help a situation, it’s about knowing and gaging when communication is effective. Sometimes talkings great, it works and everyone is able to work on their issues. Other times talking about the situation can lead to guilt tripping and emotional blackmail. So it’s ok to break up with your friends, and honestly sometimes you need to.
I feel like we’re sort of told to keep the peace no matter the cost, but when the cost is your life, your sanity and your wellbeing – you need to get rid of the person.