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When Your Friends No Longer Feel Like Your Friends

It’s something you’ve been putting off for a while. A feeling, a general sense that you’ve changed somehow. Your intuition is tugging on you, telling you that you can’t keep ignoring what deep down you know is true: You no longer feel like your friends are your friends. 

In ways, it’s sadder than a breakup with a significant other. Your friends are supposed to be with you for life. Or so they say. Your friends are the ones who will support you unconditionally. Or so they say.

But friendships too are like relationships. You have to grow together for things to stay the same. You have to have some overlap when it comes to your perspectives and your values. And if you don’t, then it’s inevitable that you guys will drift apart.

You put the feeling off because you don’t want to seem like you’re giving up on people too soon. But as time goes on, you become less and less happy around them, you resent the time you wasted hanging out with them and wish you did something else instead. They bring out the worst version of you. And that’s not the effect that friendships should have on you.

So you start to be honest with yourself – really, really honest – and acknowledge that you’re simply meant for something different right now. But still, you can’t seem to shake the same thought away, the thought that you’re a shitty person who walks away from their “friends.???

But I’m here to tell you that you’re not a shitty person. You’re not in the wrong for feeling what you feel. You can’t control it. And if someone’s not bringing out the best in you, if someone has interests that you have no desire to connect with, then you can’t force yourself to stay friends with them.

If you feel like your friends aren’t even true friends to begin with, why waste your time? Friends should be sources of support throughout the good times and the bad times. Not just there to get drunk with you because you guys have no one else to hang out with.

Your friendships should inspire you, not make you want to leave the room. So if you doubt your friends, and whether or not they’re really friends, look in the mirror and have some real talk with yourself. You know deep down what’s right, what’s really going to make you happy.

In life, we have to walk away from certain things in order to see what else it is we’re meant for. Sometimes, we come across certain people that aren’t meant to stay in our lives forever. They simply had to teach us a lesson about ourselves. This doesn’t mean that the love we have for them disappears, it just means that we enter a new chapter in our lives and discover new territories that the world has in store. New experiences, new friendships, and new lessons… 

In the long run, if friendships are real, whether or not you hang out with them every day doesn’t have an impact on the love that’s in them. It’s still possible to appreciate people for what they brought to our lives, even if you don’t see each other as much anymore. 

So if you feel like your friendships aren’t the real thing, or not making you happy at the moment, don’t blame yourself for it. You have one life and one life only, and it’s yours to live. No one else can tell you what to do with it.

For more of Defne’s writing, follow her on Facebook.