How do I drop him nicely?

Growing out of a friendship doesn’t make you a bad person.

Our elder has some tips for easing out of a friendship that doesn’t feel right.


Dear EWC

So I had a friend from when I was a teenager. We got along quite well, but later I moved to a new place, different language, different culture. In the process I changed a lot. But now when I look back, I don’t like the place where I spent my childhood. People there were rude, like really not considering or thinking much before speaking to the next person. They were always so uptight like they were on top of the world or something… I don’t want to generalize that everyone there in this category but, most of them were indeed like that. I lost contact with most of my friends from there, except a few, and one of them – let’s say ‘S’ – is kind of clingy (I know I’m an awful person). I would love to talk to him, but the thing is he is also changed. I feel like I’m talking to some stranger of a type I don’t like. Whenever I answer his phone calls, conversation is kind of disturbing… He talks like an adult… And it’s not very pleasant on my side. I most often avoid his calls but I really feel bad. He is trying to keep in touch, but here I’m being a terrible person, but his calls make me feel bad too idk… (he is rude, his jokes are really rude) even if he doesn’t realize it. Should I cut ties with him? If yes, then how? I don’t want him to realize I’m cutting ties.


Ms.Mary replies

First, let me say you are not an awful person. You are wise to consider ending a friendship that no longer enhances your life. It’s natural for individuals to grow apart over the years. That’s not a bad thing. Our interests, values, and perceptions constantly change as we meet new people and have new experiences. 

You may only have a few “forever” friends throughout your life. Those are individuals that you feel an affinity for, that you enjoy, that you have a lot in common with, who have similar values, and who you appreciate. You can go years without talking to those friends and easily pick up where you left off because you are so in tune with each other. That does not describe S.

It is wise to end any friendship that doesn’t feel right. Trust your instincts and listen to your inner voice – it is always guiding and protecting you. Instead of adding to your happiness, S detracts from your time and energy.

Your responsibility is always to yourself first. You aren’t obligated to listen to him. There is no need to go through the motions of a friendship when you aren’t enjoying it. It’s nice that you appreciate his effort at maintaining the friendship, but it no longer serves you. Consider, too, that he may be using you because nobody else will put up with him.

I suggest you gradually end the relationship while at the same time wanting the best for S. Our thoughts are very powerful – they can be felt by others energetically in ways that are difficult to understand. I suggest that before you fall asleep each night, in your mind, you wish the best for S. Send him good thoughts and see him as happy.

It isn’t necessary to formally end the relationship. Instead, keep doing what you are doing by avoiding his calls. Gradually take longer to reply to him, keep your replies very brief, and cut conversations short. It’s okay to make up an excuse for ending a conversation. Don’t initiate calls, and don’t laugh at his jokes or encourage him. See if this works over the next couple of months – putting some distance between you two. It’s important, though, that you believe and trust that you are doing the right thing. If you believe you are awful for doing it, it won’t work. Your thoughts will cancel out the strategy. It would be helpful to remember that he, too, would be better off with a friend who “gets him” and looks forward to his calls. That would be a win-win for both of you.

If my suggestions resonate with you, please give them a go. If that doesn’t work, I’d be happy to help you with Plan B. The same is true for all my colleagues at EWC. Between all of us, we can usually come up with good solutions. I hope my advice helps you! I’ll be sending good thoughts your way.

Article #: 490967

Category: Friendship

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