Forever, forever ever, forever ever?"
Andre 3000 does a great job at summing up how most of us feel when we sit down and analyze what forever really means in terms of a relationship. Andre was referring to his strained relationship with Erykah Badu. Things got tense and attaching forever to the situation no longer made sense. People identified with this. We can understand expiring romantic relationships. Most of us have either been at this point or witness it happening around us. Breakups are difficult to endure but people recognize the need for them. This level of understanding is not extended to the realm of friendship. Many people view friendships as being lifelong arrangements. This is true for some, but not for all. It’s important to be able to distinguish between lasting friendships and ones that are just seasonal. You need to able to identify an expiring friendship and also feel comfortable walking away if necessary. Here are few questions to ask yourself when trying to determine if it’s time to end a friendship:
- Is it mutually beneficial? Friendships are full of give and take. Are you always on the giving or the receiving end? Does your friend only reach out to you in crisis? There needs to be balance in order for the friendship to function smoothly.
- Can you confide in one another? It’s important to be able share things with your friend without worrying about your information being spread around.
- Does it make you feel good? This is arguably the most important question of them all. When you think about your friendship you need to be in tune with what feelings you are experiencing. Does the thought of talking to your friend stir up feelings of dread and anxiety? Does your friend make you feel bad about yourself?
If you’ve answered “no” to any of these questions then it’s time to re-evaluate your friendship. Ending friendships can be hard but it is necessary if you’re not feeling fulfilled. The therapists here at Philadelphia MFT are skilled in assisting people through breakups. If you are having a hard time detaching from a friend, do not hesitate to contact us.
This Topic of the Week was written by Malyka Cardwell, MFT.