Adios Amigo: How to Say Goodbye to a Bad Friend
With the year 2014, finally underway, many of you are making peace with 2013 while mentally adjusting to writing 2014 on your bank slips. Indeed, there is something to be said about the correlation between a New Year, and an underlying drive to find closure on all outstanding loose ends. One of the most difficult is getting rid of old friendships that no longer suit you. Always awkward and seldom painless, many cling to old relationships for fear of the lonesome alternative. Maybe you’re scared to hurt their feelings, or perhaps you’re afraid that you will be the one who gets hurt in the end. Either way, sometimes you have to rid your life of the wrong people so that you can make room for the right ones.
First Things First…Don’t Feel Guilty!
As humans, we have the propensity to outgrow anyone in our lives, at any given time. Our ideas and values change over time. Therefore, the people we choose to surround ourselves with will naturally be subject to change, as well. If you decide that someone is no longer a good fit for your life, never feel bad! We only have one life to live (even if you believe in reincarnation, you can certainly agree that we only live this life once). Would you rather spend this life catering to others’ happiness, or your own? Assuming your answer is the latter, please understand that the only person whom you can be sure has your best interest at heart…is you! If you don’t stand up for your quality of life, who will? Stop clinging to supposed friendships that ultimately may lead to your detriment!
Be a Big Boy/Girl
Don’t just call them a “dootie head,” snatch your ball and go home; you and your former friend deserve better. Ending a friendship is only difficult because we fear the reaction of others, when we shouldn’t. Be candid, be mature, be empathetic, but be certain! Let this person know, as gently as you can that you need to take some time to yourself. Don’t ever make it an attack on him or her by laying out every indiscretion ever committed against you as this will only turn into another argument, which will possibly require closure in the future. No matter how bad of a friend this person may be, keep in mind that we all are just playing the hand we are dealt. If someone has been a terrible friend to you, this is likely because they have never been taught how to be a good friend.
The Bottom Line…
Life is full of hopeful hellos and tearful goodbyes. Yes, it sucks to end a friendship with someone you care about…but this is only because you actually care. Just because you no longer wish to hang out with someone anymore, doesn’t mean you have to stop caring. Be frank, but be gentle. You never know whom you may cross paths with again…