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Things to consider before cutting off friendships

Whether it be with your best friend or significant other, conflicts are a normal part of all relationships. But if it gets to the point where you feel consistently unhappy with them, it might be time to consider cutting them off.  – Photo by Pixnio.com

Sometimes, I think that I do more for my friends than they would for me.

A lot of people believe that friends are forever, but in reality, there’s a lot of things that can end a friendship.

Not reaching out, issues with communicating and having disagreements are inevitable. But sometimes, it can just get to the point where you two can simply no longer be friends anymore, and that is completely okay. 

Knowing when to take a step back from the friendship can be hard to tell. So, here are some things to consider before distancing yourself, or even ending the friendship:

Are there boundaries set in place?

You have to set and know your boundaries. If a friend becomes more like a therapist, that’s when you know there's a problem.

There’s a fine line between advice and emotional manipulation, and this line is one that is unfortunately crossed regardless of if you mean to.

For a friendship to work, time has to be made for it. So ask yourself, do they respect your personal space and time? Do they cancel at the last minute or consistently ditch? Are they really worth it? 

Answering these questions might be hard. You might think of what they've done for you and feel like their behavior is justified. But you have to ask yourself: Is there a real reason, or are they just not interested? 

Even though their time is valuable, yours is too.

Are you both able to share?

Although friends are supposed to be the people that lift you up when you’re down, you want to make sure that they're in the headspace to handle your emotional baggage.

Tell them the overall message of what you’re trying to say, and then ask them if they are okay in hearing it.

There’s always a limit on what you should share as well. Even though sharing can be a way to be authentic and relatable, there are also things that they can not help you with and you just have to figure out on your own. 

While you do want them to completely understand and agree with you, sometimes they won’t due to how they were raised and you would have to respect them for that. 

It’s not your job to make sure they agree with you, just how it's not their job to agree with you. 

Breaking it off

After reading this, you might feel like it's time to break it off. But before doing so, address these issues with yourself first.

Remember to give yourself credit. Your feelings are valid, especially if you're considering not being friends with them anymore.

Sometimes people can be unaware of what is going on and may be confused or hurt by your decision to cut them off without communicating the issue first. If you think they can be mature about the situation, aim to talk it out with them first and get some closure. Talking things out can definitely lead to a better resolution and can increase the chances of things ending on good terms.

That being said, don’t feel like you're obligated to explain your feelings. You don’t need to give a reason to do what’s best for you. If it feels like it’s time to move on, then do so.

Don’t let others influence the way that you feel — you don’t need to feel guilty for taking care of yourself first. And if you decide to say goodbye, be sure to take action that sends them the message clearly. Block them on social media if you need to, and create a distance between you and them. 

Friendships can be challenging, but they can also be an incredibly rewarding experience. Even if you do end up losing someone you love, remember that these experiences help us grow as a person and can ultimately help us create a life that is happier and much more meaningful.

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