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Time to call it off—or is it?

When you’re not sure whether to hang in there or call it quits…

Our elder weighs in on how to rebuild a relationship and when to let it go.

Dear EWC:

Things between my friend and I have changed. At the beginning of the year, this girl told all my friends that I was trying to tarnish the relationship between her and my guy friend. I was so angry, and I called her out on it. We haven’t been friends since, and the guy and her are not speaking either, but because she dumped him.
He and I reconnected after a few weeks of not speaking, but things have not been the same. He’s changed his personality, and now tries to be a part of the society norm by dressing, acting, and talking differently. We also have not been talking in person but more so on social media. He’s not the same guy I knew last year, and it makes me so sad. I’ve been really depressed for four months now because I was happier when he and I were close and the other girl and I were close. No, I don’t talk to him as much, but we’re still considered “friends” and I like him a lot, but after what he did to me, I still don’t understand why.

I want to get over him because I know he’s not boyfriend material, but I still have these aching voices in my head telling me it’s not over. We’ve been friends for two years now, but everytime I see him it makes me so sad. Should I call it quits and kick him out of my life for good, or should I continue to pursue this relationship/friendship with him?

Simply-David replies:

I am sorry to hear that you are having difficulty deciding if you should pursue the relationship with your friend. In a situation like this, I think it would be best to make arrangements to meet him in person at some type of casual setting, such as a quiet coffee shop. In my experience it is always better to meet in person if possible so that you can see his body language and listen to his tone of voice to evaluate his sincerity and show him yours.

You can use social media messaging to make the arrangements for the meeting. Your message can briefly explain that you have something personal you would like to discuss with him regarding your friendship. If you cannot meet in person, a second alternative would be to talk with him on the phone, but in person is much better.

In the meeting you can tell him that the relationship does not appear to be as strong as before and ask him to explain what he thinks the issues are. If he reacts with sincerity and in a friendly way, you can then decide if you want to tell him that you like him and would like to restore the relationship to how it was in the past. If you think you did anything wrong yourself to damage the relationship, this would be a good opportunity to tell him you are sorry for that.

If you truly like this friend and want to renew the strong relationship, relying on social media to convey your feelings will not be nearly as effective as meeting him in person. It will take some courage but at least you will know if it is worth retaining him as your friend. I sincerely hope that you are able to resurrect a meaningful relationship with him. Be strong!

Letter #: 417284
Category: Friendship

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