I’m no stranger to friend dumping, I must shamefully admit. Though they haven’t been my proudest moments, I can’t say I regret any of them (but, yeah, maybe some of them could have been handled more maturely). Each time I said goodbye to one best friend, we both made a better, stronger friendship in someone else.
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If you’re going through something similar right now, read up on what to expect after friend dumping your BFF. I promise there is some good news in there:
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The last time I dumped a best friend was my freshman year of high school. I’ll give you the good news right up front: The new best friend became my forever best friend. She’s my best friend soulmate and always will be.
The truth was, I just didn’t completely click with the girl I was calling my best. For me, there was always some sort of wall blocking that feeling of friend intimacy. I knew what happened in her day-to-day, but I didn’t feel like I knew her. More importantly, I didn’t feel like I could be my real self around her.
The best part about a new best friend is the same best part about a new romance: learning about each other. And more specifically, learning about those weird I-thought-it-was-only-me similarities that best friend soulmates share.
Plus, your former best friend will also find her real best friend soulmate. In truth, you were both just holding each other back from your real friendship potential.
And now for some not so great news: It’s hard. It’s really hard. Friend dumping is labeled so because it’s the same thing as breaking up with an S.O. You essentially have to tell your best friend that you want to see other people.
If you get lucky, they were feeling the same thing, an unspoken disconnect. But that wasn’t my case in any of my many break ups. There were a lot of tears and, if you’re like me, it’s harder to see other people cry than to be sad myself.
But just like any other break up, you’ll both get over it, after crying a river, of course.
The ugliest part of friend dumping is the manner in which it’s performed. These days ‘ghosting’ is a growing trend in which you just don’t deal with it. You become invisible and unreachable and you leave the other person feeling crazy. Look, it’s bad enough that you’re breaking up with your best friend; don’t make her feel like the pathetic one.
Breaking up over the internet or text is also a not-so-good move. That’s the mistake I made in my last break up. I was too coward to talk to her face-to-face so I instant messaged her about how I wanted to start eating lunch with my new friend. After that, a series of immature ghosting-style avoidance went down at school. If I saw her approaching, I’d turn a corner and duck into a classroom. If she was at a party I’d avoid her gaze.
Now that you know what to expect, I hope you find the courage to talk to your friend about following your own paths and going your separate ways. Try not to make my friend dumping mistakes, though. GHOSTING IS NEVER THE SOLUTION.