Can we talk about friendships? I recently broke up with a friend and let me tell you; ending a friendship is as difficult as ending any romantic relationship. First there was the “oh” phase. You know the phase where you start to realize that your conversations are not as much fun or as interesting as they used to be. You’re not really interested in what she wants to talk about and vice verse. When you hang out, it’s just not the same. The jokes that you both used to laugh at are only funny to one of you. That old comfort seems to be drifting away; replaced instead by this weird awkwardness.
Next comes the distance phase. Since it’s not as much fun talking to and hanging out with your friend, you may ignore her call when you’re in the middle of laundry instead of talking to her to break the monotony. You may ask another friend to go to the Inflatable Palace instead of your standard buddy. You used to call your friend just to tell her one silly thing that your kid just did. Now you pick up the phone, but you’re not sure that she will appreciate it like she used to, so you hang up without dialing.
Now some friendships just disintegrate from this point. The distance grows and grows until finally there’s only the memory of the old easiness that used to exist. But in some friendships, friendships like the one I just lost, you’re much too close…lives much too entwined to just let it go. No, in friendships like this one you must address it.
Well, in this case when we addressed it, unlike some conflicts that dissolve into tears, hugs and – “I’m sorry! No, I’m sorry!” – this conversation got deep and heavy. Two days worth. During the conversation we realized….maybe we should give each other some space. It was like the underlying love was still there, but no…we weren’t imagining it…we really weren’t having fun together anymore.
So….we are broken up now. And I’m sad. Because this was a very special friendship. She really helped me get through an extremely difficult second pregnancy. But we can’t get back together. Because the point of contention still exists and we both maintain our positions.
Breaking up with a friend is hard. Have you ever broken up with a friend?