You’re always getting prepped and advised on how to handle a long-term romantic relationship. All of the advice, books, movies, and pop culture references are already there waiting for the first Casanova to break your heart. However, it seems to be forgotten that your platonic relationships are just as important if not more important. They forget, your ten-plus years of friendships ending over growing pains need a guide too.
You should be familiar with popular hit HBO show “Insecure,” unless you live under a rock. Honestly, at the looks of how 2020 is going it might feel better to take on Patrick Star’s living quarters and come back to society when it seems safe. Nevertheless, if you have not, I advise you to go check it out so you can better understand the relationship of the characters I am about to reference and to support the dope creator of the show, Issa Rae.
Issa’s character on the show has a best friend named Molly and the show has been centered around these two ladies for four seasons. Their friendship has reached popular hit show Girlfriend’s comparisons and a lot of women can see themselves in these ladies. On the last season, fans witnessed their friendship being strained and watched them try to navigate through it unsuccessfully. The show was left at cliffhanger so we have yet to see if they will reconcile. Are you at cliffhanger in any of your friendships?
As hurtful as it is to watch your favorite TV best friends relationship fall apart, it is twice as painful to navigate those hardships in real life. How can you manage a breakup with the person who knows your deepest secrets, has cried with you, shared your embarrassing moments, supported you through hardships, and etc. There is no right or wrong answer, but here are two things you can do to prevent the relationship from ending or deciding if ending it is best:
1.Define what you need and do not need out of a friendship.
You may have your level-headed friend that keeps you grounded or your fun friend that helps you unwind. Some people are lucky to find all that in one, but whatever you need out of a friendship is at your personal discretion. Therefore, you are responsible for knowing when your friendship is beneficial for you. Having friends for the sake of having people around will grow old when you realize this person is not adding anything to your life or is hindering your life. Often times we associate longevity with loyalty, but the correlation isn’t relative. You can have a much more quality friend that you’ve known for months in comparison to the friend you’ve had for years. Your friendship should be one that is supportive, helpful, encouraging, loving, fun, and reciprocal to each other’s specific needs. It’s pretty much the same qualities that are needed in romantic relationship minus the romance.
2. Ask yourself are you being a good friend?
It is very easy to point the finger at someone else and not recognize our own faults. The best way to know how someone else is feeling is to ask them. Some of us have those blunt friends that are going to tell it how it is, but even those friends may have things they won’t share out of respect for your feelings. Ask your friends, “Have I been a good friend? Is there something I can work on?” This might turn into a praising moment for both of you or it may reveal things that you two need to fix to move forward. It may even show you that this may not be a healthy friendship for either of you and it may be best to cut ties. Unfortunately, some things in life have an expiration date and some get better with age. I’m not saying the friendship is over forever, but take the time to self-examine a part from one another and work on bettering yourself as a friend or ultimately finding friends that fit you better.