Monday, October 15, 2012

Has your friendship reached its expiry date? - Divas Inc. Magazine

Let?s be honest, we all have been through a stage in our friendships where we felt it was time to call it quits and go our separate ways. Ending a friendship is like ending any relationship, if not more difficult. We need friends in our lives but there comes a point where it might be necessary for you to end things. Sometimes you have to end some friendships in order to grow as a person because there are some people who are toxic and then there are those who just wear you down with all their negativity and victim mentality. I keep very few close friends and that?s a personal choice and over the years I?ve learnt that the best friends you can have is your family because at the end of the day when everyone else disappears from your life they are the ones who remain.

Friends come in different forms, for different reasons and not every friendship is close and meaningful. But a close and long-term friendship gives you an opportunity to have that someone to share your life experiences. Going through certain stages and moments together creates an intimacy that is not easily replaced nor forgotten. This is why it is very important for a close friend, to be more honest, even if it leads to a confrontation at times. Any relationship will have its ups and downs and even really bad times, but only by talking about what went wrong, and why, can you be able to repair it.

However there are times, when a friendship truly has a negative effect on you ? no matter how many times you try to ?save? it, you just can?t win. The kind of friendship where despite feedback given and hurdles jumped, they always end up undermining you or bringing out the worst in you. These are the so-called ?toxic? relationships that should be ended by all means. They will drain you, sucking up the emotional energy you need for other, more mutually satisfying relationships.

More often than not people choose to end the friendships by ?fading away?, by means of dropping out of sight, not returning calls and not making plans. The sad part about such a breakup is that it can leave the friend feeling very hurt and not knowing what has gone wrong in the relationship. How you end a friendship depends a lot on the intensity, value and length of that friendship.

Here are some things you need to think about before ending a friendship:

Don?t look for perfection

You can keep a friend who is great about certain things, but not about others. It is worth salvaging the friendship if there is just one area that is difficult. If you have to have perfection, you might end up with no friends at all.

Give them a chance to change

Sometimes your friend really has no idea that there is a problem, and if you don?t tell them, nothing will get better and then you?ll want out of that friendship. Give a friend a chance to make changes, by telling them kindly what is not working and what changes need to be made. They may really thank you later, even if in the short term it is hard.

Have a heart to heart

Someone who has been important in your life deserves a real discussion and real honesty. Both of you need to air your opinions and hear that you?ve valued the friendship you?ve had. It is the mature, adult thing to do and it will benefit both of you to have that closure. Don?t let your fears of confrontation prevent this from happening.

Eliminate toxic friends

A friendship should, for the most part, bring out the best in you. If over time and even with feedback this person brings out your worst or sucks up large quantities of emotional upheaval, then self-preservation comes first. Be clear, be honest and be firm. ?If you have tried talking and it?s a no-go, or if the person is not close to you or hasn?t been around very long ? sometimes the heat of a real breakup just isn?t worth it. It may be fine then to just ?fade away? and leave clear hints that you are not going to stay in the picture.

By: Buli Mdanyana @buli_mdanyana



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