Drifting apart

People change a lot throughout their lives.

As we change, we outgrow some of the things that used to be comfortable for us – including our friends. But how do you know when you just need a good long talk and when you need to let go?

Letting go

I don't know what happened. We used to be so close.Sometimes friends just drift apart. It happens. It doesn’t mean that anyone is to blame, it just means that you’re changing and you might not have as much in common anymore.

Here are some signs that you could be drifting apart:

  • Not feeling the urge to call or hang out as much
  • Feeling like you don’t have much to talk about
  • Avoiding phone calls
  • Getting irritated by little things they do
  • Snapping at each other over nothing

Can it be saved?

It’s hard to let go of friends, especially when you haven’t had a big fight and neither of you has treated the other badly. Sometimes friendships just need a little time and space. Consider taking a break and starting fresh in a few months. You might find that a bit of distance is all your friendship needs.

It’s over

It can really hurt to feel a close friend drifting away. If you’ve tried reconnecting and it hasn’t worked out, it can hurt even more.

  • Take your time
    It’s normal to hurt when you lose a friend. You need to allow yourself some time to grieve the friendship. It might feel horrible now, but you will start to feel better eventually.
  • Mark the loss
    Is there something you can do that would help give you closure over your loss? Some ideas are writing a poem or letter (you don’t have to send it), drawing or painting, or making a scrapbook of memories.
  • Don’t blame yourself
    People and friendships can change. Remember that you are still worthy of strong and true friendship.
  • Move on
    When you’re ready, start thinking about making new friends. Check out Making friends for some help.

Visit the grief and loss pages for more.

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Last Reviewed August 2013 by the Kids Help Phone Counselling Team

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