Friendship…Is it too early to bring it up, as we are still celebrating Valentine’s Day? 14 February observes not just romantic relationships; there is room for friendship to be honoured. I am sure all of you have best friend/s or a close-knit gang you look up to – a band that does all the crazy things with you!
Friendship comes in all flavours – tangy, savoury, sweet, and bittersweet (read: fighting and teasing). Among friends, we have childhood friends, college friends, work associates, bosses, and some whom you casually meet and strike conversations with at parties – you can call them friends of friends. I am sure all of you have friends forever. But what about those who have left you (read: ghosted), moved to another continent/country, or fought with them? Some may have been your childhood pals, and now they seem so distant. You get to know updates about their life (read: milestones) on social media now. As disheartening as it can be, it is real too. Feelings may not fade off in friendships entirely, but they won’t have the same flavour as they did when you started the friendship.
Friends are humans who leave footprints and marks in your life as they come. They may be forever, but not many of your friends are meant to be forever. You may part ways with them because of differences in opinions, thoughts, or even distances. Growing apart has been more of late because of physical and emotional spaces. Some even say the friends you begin your early life with may not be the ones in your closest circle as you near the end of your life. But, of course, some lucky few end up with childhood friends in their old age.
Physical distances may be because you or your friends may relocate abroad for higher studies or even settle down. More than that, emotional distance enters the relationship once you or your friend(s) move to another city/country. You or your friend may have found a new circle of friends in the new location. Phone calls or text messages may become fewer. Bonds may weaken over some time but not fade away completely. Either way, all relationships undergo the test of time, and they decide whether they will be a part of your circle even 20 years later.
10 Reasons Why
Friendships lose colour and flavour
We often talk about deep, long-lasting friendships akin to the deep reds in nature. But have any of you experienced the feeling of losing friends? The friends whom you believed are the FOREVER type. The ones you thought will be your 2 AM friends.
1. Changing physical locations
Most of us move schools, cities, and even countries as children or adults. We end up losing contact numbers of friends during the transition process. Most friendships die a slow death during this time. Our then besties will become a distant past.
2. Different priorities, life choices
Very often, we make various life choices, and priorities begin to take shape over time. As a result, we may no longer match with our buddies and their interests. Routes change, and we stop being friends too.
3.“Lack of time” or change in lifestyles
In the rat race, we often stop calling friends because of deadlines, work stress and pressures, family, traveling, and even an imbalanced routine. In addition, our priorities have changed over the years, making us hesitant to pick up the phone to call our friends.
4. Misunderstandings or conflicts
We do not nod a Yes to every statement our friends make. Unfortunately, there are times when a No is taken in the wrong way. We may form strong ideologies that do not match each other and end up in conflicts and misunderstandings. This may lead to not talking to each other for months and even years.
5. Toxic bonds deflect friends
Toxicity enters friendships just like romantic relationships. A friend might keep pulling down your self-esteem when you are at your lowest levels. They may poke at your confidence instead of supporting you. Some may be constantly unhappy with your success and happiness and mock you always. That is the time you choose to walk away from that friend. Unfortunately, it may be your closest pal or best childhood friend.
Your best friend or friend circle may have given away your secrets and humiliated you. This can be hurtful, and you choose to distance yourself from your friends as you trusted them with your deepest feelings and secrets.
7. One-sided friendships
Over some time, all friendships go through this stage. When you continue being the giver and your friend or friends take advantage of you by not reciprocating, it can hit you hard. Also, friendships die when you see they aren’t respecting you for what you are doing for them and aren’t doing the same for you.
8.No common interests
When you and your friends have nothing in common to share or talk about, you end up searching for like-minded friends elsewhere. So you aren’t exactly breaking ties with your friends, but you become emotionally distant.
9. You cannot be YOU
Each time you share something with your friend and they trivialize your emotions, calling it a bluff can leave you hurting. If there are constant idea clashes, you end up restricting yourself in front of your friend, making the bond artificial or fake.
10. Endless Silence
It is common for friends to go into a shell after a big fight or argument. The silence can be for a few days, but when the silence is a longer one, friendships can be affected. Lack of communication can lead to fading friendships.
Losing friends is unfortunate, but as they say, some people are meant to come into your life when you need them, or they need you the most and leave when they have to. The reasons for leaving may vary, but you still have those beautiful memories to cherish when you were with them. So, love those times! I won’t say: “Move on” because it isn’t easy to give up on friends who were with you when you needed them the most, but I do wish them well, and maybe, you might meet them years later with a bright smile and reminisce those extraordinary times again over a drink or cuppa tea/coffee.
She is a quirky writer/photographer/closet poet and singer who has traversed a non-conventional path. As a former entertainment journalist who has worked in print and online media for a decade, Priya loves talking to people and writing their unspoken stories. She is a single parent of a 7-year-old son settled in Tamil Nadu and a Content Consultant/ Communications-PR Manager. She is also an informal mentor to parents in her local parenting network. She dreams of being an author of a book and maybe the scriptwriter of a film someday!
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