So, you and your best friend, sister, or even significant other used be almost the same person—practically inseparable. But have you been feeling that, lately, the two of you are at odds with one another when it comes to… well… basically everything?
The tragic part about life is that people change. The average person has a personality change about once every 7 years. Now, sometimes this is so subtle that it goes unnoticed. However, sometimes it comes on drastically and can ruin friendships.
Not to worry: that doesn’t happen most of the time and unfriending someone usually happens after some big event, falling out, or problem. But sometimes people grow apart without realizing it and, before you know it, you don’t even talk to the person who was your best friend for years. [Read: 12 reasons why so many romantic relationships drift apart over time]
You’ve grown apart from someone in your life before
You probably don’t have to think very hard about growing apart from someone in your life. It usually happens between grade school and middle school, and then again transitioning into high school. This is mainly because puberty does a lot to your personality and maturity level.
Take it from someone who seems to be a professional when it comes to growing apart from people. It’s not that I try or do it on purpose; I just have a habit of growing apart from people… which makes me the perfect candidate to help you see the telltale signs that you’re growing apart and don’t realize it.
#1 Your desire to talk to them dwindles. If you’re finding that you don’t really care to talk to them that much anymore, it could be a sign you’re growing apart. This could be for a lot of reasons. Maybe you can’t muster the effort. Maybe you’re worried they wouldn’t care about what you have to say, or find it interesting.
When you’re attached at the hip or really close with someone, you tell them just about everything. If that has changed, it means you’re no longer as close as you once were. [Read: Why you lose friends or just drift apart over time]
#2 Their opinions don’t match yours most of the time. One of the main reasons you get so close to someone in the first place is that you share opinions and beliefs. When those start shifting in a different direction, it can cause you to move in a different direction, too.
Some of those beliefs are what you base your life on and if theirs differ from yours, it may cause you to spend less time with them.
#3 Your interests don’t match up anymore. Just like with opinions and beliefs, your interests are a bridge that keep the two of you connected. When that bridge is severed, do you really think you’ll be walking across it as much as you used to?
If you start liking a different kind of music, movie, or even lifestyle and they like the opposite, it’s less opportunity for the two of you to spend time together or discuss your favorite reads—which means you will, inevitably, grow apart.
#4 You made new friends who don’t care for them. A lot of the time, new friends can throw a wedge between old ones. If you’re finding new friends to hang out with more often than your old ones, it’s a sign you’re growing apart.
What’s more is that your new friends might not like your old friends. So you don’t invite them along with you, because it would be weird for them. That can really tear relationships apart… without you even realizing it. [Read: 14 clear signs your best friend isn’t your best friend anymore]
#5 They’re not the first person you want to invite to events. I know I had a best friend that would be my #1 go-to if I ever won one of those contests on the radio for a “trip for two” to somewhere amazing. But when I was asked recently who I would take if I won, it wasn’t her.
She isn’t the only—or the first—person I would want to bring with me anywhere. I didn’t realize it until that moment, but we’ve grown apart drastically in the past few months.
#6 You ignore their calls. And you do so without remorse. You find that you just don’t want to pick up the phone and talk to them. It might be a very little thing, because people find so many ways to justify not answering.
You’re “busy,” can’t talk at the moment, or even just “didn’t get it.” But honestly, there’s a reason you aren’t picking up when you would’ve answered on the first ring before.
#7 Your friend group has shifted. You more than likely had a certain friend group with this person. The two of you hung out with them all the time and they might have been the glue that really kept the two of you together.
But now you hang out with one group while they hang out with another, and don’t see each other too often. Getting into a new group of friends that they don’t share with you is a sign you’re growing apart.
#8 You find them annoying. This is also a very subtle sign that you’re growing apart because, honestly, you can get annoyed by anybody. However, if you’re always irritated with someone when they don’t really do anything to spark it, it could mean that you’re growing apart.
This happened to me and a roommate of mine. We used to be friends *obviously, since we moved in together* but after a while, just her being in the room was enough to annoy the heck out of me. We grew apart and I didn’t even know it at the time.
#9 You go longer periods of time without seeing them—and you don’t care. You haven’t seen this person in two weeks and you couldn’t really care less. That’s how you know that you’ve really grown apart.
When you’re close to someone, you want to see them as often as you can. When you’ve grown apart from someone, the desire to see their face and interact with them just isn’t there anymore.
#10 You can think of people more important to you. When your newest friends rank above the person who used to be #1 on all your lists, you’ve begun to grow apart. When there are more important people that keep sliding in spots above them, you’ve already grown apart.
[Read: 17 bad friends you need to unfriend from your life]
Growing apart can be a slow, drawn-out process that can take years to fully complete. You may not even realize how much you’ve grown apart from someone. This list can help you identify the early signs and act accordingly.
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