Good Friendship Turned Bad
Have you experienced that emotional drainage from a tough situation with a friend you've known for years? What about that one time, when that friend you've looked up to, just shut you down completely on an idea that you wanted to talk about? Well, look no further. I want to share my story, and in hopes that this will help you out. By the way, feel free to reach out to me with questions, also -- I want to build an on-line support group, to see where this goes!
Recently, I made a decision to move on from a friend that I got into a text argument with. I realized that this so-called "friend" preferred to spend over 20 minutes going back-and-forth with me on the text messages, as opposed to just spending 10 minutes to review my work for a job submission. However, in the midst of the argument, I was internally strong enough not to curse at him, or say things that I would regret saying later. The truth is, I wanted to be emotionally independent for a long time.
Sometimes, you can salvage the friendship depending on the situation. A very good way to salvage a troublesome friendship, is to set a solid boundary between yourself and that friend. One tip that works very well, is when you're doing great with your personal life, and your life is filled with enough good friends to a point, where you wouldn't have space for that troublesome friend.
But sometimes, that option isn't do-able enough. Sometimes, you'll run into consistent problems with that friend, to a point where it's eating up your personal life. That's when you've really got to set your foot down. Now, I'm a pretty friendly, outgoing and personable guy, so I don't recommend being distasteful to scare away that friend.
What I recommend doing, is telling that friend something like this:
"You know, I'm very sorry that this friendship isn't working out. I've tried many times to salvage our friendship, and for some odd reason, we keep butting heads with one another. I wish you nothing but the best, but I feel that it's in our best interest to part ways. I'm sorry, but I need to move on with my life."
If the friend doesn't understand or accept that, then here's another tip:
"Yeah, I know it's not an easy decision, believe me. I'm sure you'll do great in your life. If you need a friend to talk to, there are websites like YouTube that can help you out. Have you considered those options?"
Allow this friend to speak. If he/she apologizes, stay firm and say:
"I understand, and I accept your apology. I wish you the best. You'll find a really good friend -- right now, I need to focus on my life, and hope that you understand."
From there, that friend will come to understand, and you should be set to leave the conversation from there! Of course, if things get out of hand with this friend, then it is advisable to contact your local police for help.
So, the whole point is to end the friendship politely, and not engage in shouting matches. You want to firmly establish your healthy boundaries, and be free of any emotional attachments or regrets.
The main reason I'm touching on this topic, is because there was a time, where I discovered my new self and my new passions. Before then, I was a low self-esteemed guy that allowed himself to be stuck on a dead-end job, and took verbal abuse from my supervisor on a regular basis. So, it turns out, my long-time friend was getting the joy of seeing me down and depressed, and wanted to use me as a "punching bag," if you will. There were times where he was there for me, but it went to a point where he was continuously yelling at me on the phone. However, anytime he saw me happy and pursuing my passions, then he started making snide remarks without providing any constructive advice. I gave him my lending ear, and upheld his opinions only to find out that most of his opinions were detrimental to my life. Of course, I could elaborate more on the damages he's caused to my personal life, but I'd rather focus on the productive process of moving forward and letting the right kind of friends naturally come, while I continue progressing in my everyday life.
My Ultimate Question Is:
1. Would you rather end a bad friendship while you can, and allow yourself the time to heal, while you make better friends? I had to acknowledge that trying to salvage the friendship was creating ongoing issues and problems that were bad for my emotional health.
2. Do you really have time to deal with a friend that's jealous and envious of you, when you're trying to move forward with your life?
3. If this "friend" was costly, discouraging your passions, and continually making efforts to destroy your reputation and badmouth you, is it really worth salvaging that contact?
In my case, I determined that the outcome would be more beneficial, if I chose to simply move on.
What are your thoughts? Feel free to comment below. I want to reach out to others in a tough-situation with friends, and perhaps, create an on-line community to exchange our stories of friendship struggles, and provide helpful advice to one another.
Mistakes to avoid:
1. Avoid talking about this past-friend altogether. You may confide with someone close, or you may reach out to a YouTube channel to discuss those issues. But, the only way for you to truly move on, is to make new friends by establishing common interests! Never let the past-friendship be a topic!
2. Also, the emotion may drag with you at work, and that is perfectly normal to experience. A helpful tip is to keep yourself humored daily in general. You don't want to reveal any of your personal life at work, since that kind of information will only come to haunt you. Instead, confide with someone that you know that you can reach out to. In essence, it's really better to take a couple of sick/personal days off work, until you're mentally cleared out and ready to take on those tasks. After all, you'll want to stay in good standings with your current boss and co-workers.
3. Sometimes, I'll even find that when I go out to different bars and venues, I'll run into toxic situations with people that I meet. Sometimes, they'll try to get an attitude or lash at me in an attempt to seek some type of emotional reaction. In that case, I'll laugh it off, and I'll keep in mind to shred through the bad seeds to find the good ones. Some things just aren't worth wasting your emotions on. You are in control of your space, realm, and emotions.
4. If you must, keep yourself pre-occupied with the hobbies and interests that you enjoy doing, and keep working towards your personal goals. I believe that this is the true path to happiness, and it's a great way to connect with new friends!
5. Making small accomplishments in your daily life will turn into big accomplishments. This will help ensure that you're progressing towards your true happiness!
6. Sometimes, confiding with someone close about your friendship issues isn't a good idea. You may find that you're not getting any type of emotional support, or that your pushing that other friend away. In that case, post your stories under my article below, or develop a friendship with someone who posts YouTube shows on these types of topics -- there are plenty out there that will be more than happy to provide the type of support group that you need!
7. The best advice I read on-line in the world is "take care of yourself" on an article dealing with family crisis -- nothing could be further from the truth!