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Are You Losing a Friend or Just Drifting Away?

why you lose friends?

Do you think you’re really losing a friend, or are there other secret reasons behind why both of you are drifting apart? Find the real truth here.

Ever wondered why we stick around with certain friends and why we drift away from others? Are you wondering why you’re losing a friend even if you’re trying hard to hold on to that friend? They say that friendship is unwavering, loyal and a bond that holds us together for life. But how true is that really?

[Read: 10 types of friends who can ruin your life]

The truth behind losing friends and drifting away

All of us have special memories with friends.

And they’re still a part of conversations now and then.

But whatever happened to those best friends with whom you shared so many happy times over the years?

You may remember most of their names, and you may be in touch with a handful of those old friends. But your relationship is nothing like it once was.

And however much you’d like to deny that you’ve drifted apart, you can’t hide the fact that your friendship with a good friend just isn’t like what it used to be before.

You may speak to your best friends now and then, but the connection ends there. All of us end friendships now and then, and we may never really understand the real reason why.

Why do you choose certain friends and avoid a few others?

You may assume that you choose your friends based on compatibility or their nature, but in reality, the reasons are far darker than you think.

Why friends really lose each other

Why do you think you’ve drifted away from a friend? Do you think your best friend started avoiding you for no reason at all?

The biggest reason why friends lose contact with each other, or avoid each other, is because they have nothing to gain from the other friend anymore!

It’s strange, but it’s the bitter truth. Friends lose each other because there’s no reason to keep in touch anymore. You may subconsciously feel like you’re having a better time with someone else, which may lead to you ignoring an older best friend because, quite simply, one of you don’t need the other person anymore.

Friends drift apart because they no longer have anything to talk about, no longer have anything to share, and one of you started believing you’re better than the other.

[Quiz: How far will you really go for success?]

Choosing lovers and friends

All of us have our preferences when it comes to choosing a partner. Can’t the same rule apply to friends too? You stay close to the ones that matter and avoid or even ignore the ones that don’t matter anymore.

In friendship and in a relationship, we need someone who can support us, help us in times of need, and someone who is useful to us. Everything in the world is about mutual back scratching, why not friendships? If you feel like you’d look cooler or become more popular by hanging out with someone, you need to give that someone something else in return to share the same affection towards you. [Read: I miss him but he doesn’t miss me]

People like spending time with similar minded people, or people we consider our equals with similar lifestyles or common interests. Really now, would you sit with someone and just blink at each other for an hour? Nope! You would talk about your work, or you’d talk about the problems you have with your respective partners.

Let’s say you’ve climbed the right corporate ladder and become a multimillionaire now. If you’ve cancelled your meeting with a few heads of organizations to hang out over a drink with a best friend you haven’t seen in a year, you think you’d be happy?

It’s awesome to meet your friend, even better if it’s a hot crush. But if you were to sit down and talk, you’d talk about your work and your lifestyle, and your friend may talk about life as a backpack traveler or life at the lower rungs of the corporate ladder. It would take both of you less than fifteen minutes to realize that there are better things to do than just sit down, waste each other’s time and talk about something either of you don’t understand. [Read: 20 reasons why a guy may never like you back]

Friendships revolve around interests and social status, and as hard as you may try, it’s easier to stay friends only when you’re both equals or share common interests.

When friendships suffer

When people start looking at things in a different way or set different priorities in life, friendships start to suffer.

Sometimes, in friendship, it’s all about who’s doing what and who’s doing better. If you’re out shopping with a friend and you get a scratch card and find out that you’ve won a trip to Hawaii, of course, you’d be delighted.

But don’t expect your friend to be very happy to see you off or welcome you back. You may even have to put up with a bit of slander and bad mouthing because your friend would have told the whole world about how it was actually her card, which you pulled away! But, let’s be logical here. Deep inside, wouldn’t you be jealous and pissed off too if it was your friend who won a lottery? It’s the same thing when one friend passes out of college and gets a dream job.

What’s happened here is that one of you has suddenly got better and stepped over the emotional hierarchy between friends.

When the self confidence or morale of one person in a group goes up, especially when all friends have been equals, the others can’t help but dislike the person. When the balance tilts, the friendship tilts towards the sour side too. Friends start finding flaws and bitch about each other when the balance tilts against their favor.

You know that you’ve felt jealous, even if it was for just an instant when your best chum got something you’ve always wanted. Call it envy if you want, but really, envy is just a sugary word for a sudden involuntary burst of jealousy. [Read: Why friends end up becoming secret enemies]

Jealousy kills friendship

Friendships can sour or you can lose friendships even over everyday affairs. We get jealous all the time, and I’m not just referring to winning prize money or marrying a rich bloke. Let’s talk about your life. You hang out with a group of friends all the time.

One fine day, another group of friends call you over and ask you out to have coffee. You shuffle your feet, tug your hair, crane your neck around and look at your friends who’re all too bored to do anything. So you smile at this new friend and agree.

When you get back after having a nice time with your new friends, you sit down with your friends. But they all seem a bit distant towards you. No one’s talking much or laughing much, particularly at your jokes. You hear a few snide remarks about you, and you brush it off. As the days pass by, you go out with this other bunch of friends now and then, and each time, you find your pals getting more and more distant from you.

And the snide comments towards you start getting brutal. Everyone who’s ever been cool or popular has always had to go through this brutal transition of friends.

Your friends weren’t possessive about you. They didn’t have any plans, so you accompanied another group of new friends out. What’s the big deal? The big deal is that it was you who was called out, not one of your other friends. By that small gesture, you’ve shown the others that you’re the coolest one amongst your friends, and the fact that you’re superior has made the others drift away from you. Unknown to them, they’ve marked you as a superior and can’t be with you anymore. [Read: How to become successful in life]

Can anyone ever be good friends?

Well, perhaps it may all be a vicious circle. And you may forever be on the move, changing friends faster than soiled underwear, which is really depressing. Friends will come and friends will go. It’s a part of life, and as painful or annoying as it may seem, there’s nothing you can do about it but to let go and move on.

On a few rare occasions, you’ll meet a few great friends who genuinely care for you and feel happy for you and your successes. While these kinds of friend are hard to find, it’s easier to build a strong friendship when you meet someone who shares few similarities with you when it comes to your profession or your path towards success. Always remember this, two competitors can end up as rivals, not as friends.

Good fences make good neighbors, all of us know that. If you want to share a good friendship with someone, always build your fences, set a few boundaries and don’t cross them too early. Perfect friendships take years to build and only moments to crumble. [Read: What to do when you don’t know what to do with your life]

The best of friends are those who spend time with each other, stand up for each other and are always ready to voice their opinion instead of feeling jealous or secretly plotting payback. It’s the first step to avoid losing friends and building better relationships.

But then again, is the friendship worth holding onto in the first place? That’s something you have to think about. And even if you aren’t thinking about it, chances are, your friend is subconsciously thinking about it and evaluating you as a long term friend!

[Read: The right time to end a bad friendship]

So are you really losing a friend or is all the secret jealousy and spite just pulling both of you away? Good friendships need good fences, not ill will. Get that wrong and there’s only one way the friendship can go. Downhill.

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Alison Ricard
Alison Ricard
Alison Ricard loves sunshine, good books and contagious laughter. And when she isn’t writing, you’ll find her sitting in a café, people watching and commun...
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18 thoughts on “Are You Losing a Friend or Just Drifting Away?”

  1. Camila says:

    I lost my best friend to another girl. We always used to hang out together and spend all our evenings having fun. But lately, she’s been spending all her time with another girl. Even when I confront her about our friendship, she says it’s still the same. But I know it’s not.

    If she’s leaving me because she thinks she’s better than me, hell, I’m just pissed off now!

  2. Bitch says:

    My best friend stole my boyfriend from me. I hate her! It sucks that there’s nothing I can do about it. My boyfriend’s happy with her and she’s having the time of her life. God, I wish I could do something about it to get back at that bitch.

  3. Envy says:

    This helps… so much. I looked at the other topics and I realized I’m probably a green-eyed monster but my friend brings me down and criticizes me.

  4. Sarah says:

    My best friend was never really my bestie now that i examine our friendship i see the red flags like it was always about her and her needs she would cancel plans sometimes and would be all bitchy and jelous when I were getting more attention or having more fun. I still love her as my friend since I have good memories and have nothing against her, but we are no longer besties as with time out attitudes and change.
    Before i’d make some sort of effort to get back intouch but now I simply dont care anymore since friendships are two sided and I simply wish her all the happiness 🙂

  5. Wezzy says:

    I’m in love with my bestf riend but he has a girlfriend. What do i do?

  6. Sweet pain says:

    My bestfriend was kinda taken from me because of a girl was more popular than me and my friend needed a good “background” of who she hangs out with. My friend sometimes pass me to give a wave and a small smile. I’m so sick of it that I started brushed off so many people who wanted to be my friend. I avoid people because I’m scared to get hurt again. If anyone feels the same way, don’t do what I had done. This would kill your social life cause mine had gotten murdered already.

  7. Enid says:

    Muster the Courage & Confidence to Move On!

    When I was in my late teens & early twenties, my best friends were a group that were considered socially “better” than me. They were similar to each other, but I was slightly on the outside. Still, they were kind and we had fun together, but they always treated me with a little bit of superiority. They would also sometimes make little comments about my background. I stayed friends with them for years because I was afraid of being lonely and making a change.

    Finally, though, one day something happened where two banded together against me because of a mistake I made. We all make mistakes (and they did too, mind you). I was so upset. I simply got fed up and avoided contact after that day. I did it kind of subetly almost. They were perplexed and tried to get me to come back, but I was having none of that! I remained polite and smiled when I saw them, but I never met them socially again. I’ve been so much happier ever since, and have never looked back!

    And, by the way, I’ve become very successful in my career and met my wonderful husband, and we have a lovely family. I’m also much happier with the friends I have. It’s scary, but you CAN make the change to better friends and it will totally effect your whole life!

  8. Katie says:

    Me and my old best friend were together for 6-7 years we were never seperated then a girl my old best friend thought was horrible and mean became “changed” and they became friends and then she started dance and I was pretty much out of the picture and it’s been over 3 year and when we see each other we dont ever look at each other or say anything and I do admit I still miss her and I’ve needed someone to talk to about all the shit in my life there only way older or way younger kids in my nabor hood she was a year young then me

  9. Hannah says:

    Before I went to university last year I had a few really good friends from college. In fact one of them from school and we use to be really open with each other. However when I came back at Easter time and one of them contacted me to meet up it just happened I was with my partner. I told him I am always with my partner at weekends. So unfortunately I never got to see them. When I went back I kept trying to contact them on Facebook but it was like they had planned together to ignore me. Recently they deleted me on Facebook and I don’t know what I did wrong but I guess it is their problem. Shame though because we all use to get on so well!

    But now I have just moved on and I still have my partner, some good friends at home and have friends at university. Sometimes you just have to face the fact that when you are in different life stages to your friends then it is so easy to lose the friendship because you have effectively gone separate ways.

  10. Raven smiles says:

    Me and my bestie used to always hang-out with each other and have sleepovers almost every weekend!!! But then, a new friend came along… Now they hang-out with each other and I’m never invited. When I told my friend about my jealousy she said not to worry and that no matter what we’ll be friends forever. But still, when I see her in the hallways and wave at her, she barely smiles, but then when I see her look at her other friend, she smiles a really big smile and laughs and has fun with her. I don’t know what to do, I’m losing my best friend and I’m afraid she doesn’t like me any more…..

  11. Isabel says:

    Me and my bestfriend were friends for a while now. We have so many memories and sleepovers… we even planned our whole future life together.. what our wedding was going to be like how our houses would look like, but now she met many othe friends and seemed to forget the memories we held in the past. It seems as if im running the friendship alone and if I let go we will collapse…. I miss the old us so bad how I wasn’t akward to talk to her at times.

  12. sketch says:

    Americans don’t know what friendships are. Friends should remain friends no matter what, but not in America. Friendships -as this article has defines it – is very transactional for Americans. If there’s nothing to gain, there’s no use of having a friend. NOT SO! Friendships are supposed to be the other way round — have a friend & be a friend to someone EVEN IF there is nothing to gain. This is why there is so much depression and isolation in the states because you have no friends!!

  13. Confused says:

    I had a best guy friend. We would walk togeather and text each other for hours. The one day I wasn’t there because I was sick. I come back and he’s so distant! We used to smile and laugh to together but it went away in 3 short days and I don’t know what to do.

  14. worried says:

    Me and my Buddy’s wife became really good best friends now she seems distant and doesn’t seem like she wants to talk as much as we use to. We’d talk for hours most days but conversation has became short and almost non existent. We would share and talk about everything

  15. Highly concerned says:

    Truly sensing the change after reading this & feeling what I’ve felt as of late equal out to be true. Or I could be overthinking this. We are, definitely, drifting apart. I’m 26 & my best friend is 25. My best friend & I became friends in 8th grade but we didn’t get close until after high school. She’s the longest friendship I’ve ever had. As of late I’ve been hitting her up & it’s only been me hitting her up. In the past we usually have had an healthy awesome of us taking the time with talking or texting each other. I respect her space because she works a lot & in school. Yet no ones that busy to talk or text. But recently texting her has been like a forced tasked. Like a chore. At least how it appears to me. Her response is not as engaging. No short answers but once she says what she says its like its over. In that moment I’m expecting some feedback yet I get nothing. Then it’s hours before I get a response & I just stop expecting it. It sucks & I know this is apart of life. Yet each time this has happened to me I don’t think I truly get use to this. I don’t want to assume but I can’t help but make this conclusion. I know I’ll make more friends & this will be an afterthought but sadly everyone’s concept of friendship is day & night. Maybe i just don’t know how to be a friend.

  16. Anonymous says:

    Me and my best friend…my soul sister.We met 5 years ago.We were both fans of the same band, we were both music lovers, we liked the same movies, we watched movies together a couple times, we talked about anything and everything.I got to know her and I think, she got to know me too.
    Our friendship went so great for a year.She is 3 years older than myself.I had abandoned high school and she was in college.She had just got out of a friendship, as so did I.We connected quickly.She told me all about her previous friendship, how it ended because apparently her bestie betryed her.
    I felt sorry for her and for a long time I supported her.
    After a few months we started planning out the future together.We started working on a project.On a similar project that she and her ex bff were supposed to work on, till the bff betrayed her.
    We had to work on the project separately.I had done my part, and whenever I would ask, “how’s your part going?” she’d make excuses.I overlooked it…I told myself, she has college, she’s busy, she has her family who doesn’t agree with her passions, etc.
    After a year of friendship, it was autumn, she had to go back to college.She told me she’d be unable to reply me for a while…cause she’s gonna be busy.
    Okay.I waited.A week…two weeks…it passed one month.I checked facebook to see if she is online.I started to get worried, I was hoping that nothing bad happened to her.I messaged her twice a week.Then, finally, I saw it.
    Not only did she completely ignored the “Hey sister, how are you?I miss you” post on her wall, but she also replied to someone else…and she had accepted her ex best friend on fb.And she replied to her.They were talking as if nothing had happened.
    I did not know how to react.I was in shock.How the hell could this happen?She more than once expressed her despise toward that girl.Now she was talking to her.
    I swallowed my pride at the thought of betrayal and messaged her on the subject.If she was happy having this girl back in her life, I was going to support her.”We are sisters.I will always be there for you.”
    I tried befriending the other girl.I asked my bestie, what about our project?Do you still want to go on with it?
    No answer.The other girl seemed to be a nice person.
    In the end…I accepted I have been betrayed.For days, I cried.I yelled.I broke stuff in my room.I took up other projects of my own.Tried to cope while also trying to carry on the promise, “friends forever”.
    Finally…I stopped talking to her.I let out all my feelings.I said, it’s over.She will no longer be part of my life.
    Till she contacted me.She was having issues in her life…she still does.
    I threw in her face everything.Why did she lie to me?Why did she give up our project?At least she could have told me!We were friends.I had to find out from her fb about she and her ex bff.And what the hell was it all about?”It was a misunderstanding” she said.That her ex bff called her oneday, apologized, and they worked things out.
    Okay.She got her happy end.
    What about me?And it’s not jealousy here.It’s protecting what’s MINE, because she was my friend, she was mine, before the other girl came between us.
    I love her like the sister I never had.I decided to let her back in my life.Because to be honest, I can’t live with the pain of knowing she does not love me enough.That she “doesn’t trust when someone is being nice to her” as she once said, in other words, she doesn’t trust me.She used to trust me, when she gave me all those details about her.She trusted me then.And I trusted her.
    But even more than this pain, I can’t take the pain of not having her in my life.I cannot take not being able to be there for her if she needs a shoulder to cry on, to share the joy when good things happen in her life.I cannot take not being able to have my friend and to be her friend.
    I’m trying to fight to recover her friendship, I know it’s not easy and maybe I will fail.But I’d rather die than give up after succeeding to forgive her lies, her silence.
    Maybe this is friendship.When someone is close to another due to a specific interest.Or maybe it is love that brings people together.Maybe it’s both.
    I don’t know.But I know sometimes it’s worth fighting for a friendship, even if in the end, it will turn to be a lost cause.

  17. Chantinni Thevi says:

    Sorry to hear this. It’s always that they go back to the person who treated them badly, have you noticed? 🙂

  18. Esther says:

    I’m American and your comment brought me a lot of hope actually! Your comment was the most helpful, and a very good one as an answer to this piece!

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