What do you do when you’ve grown apart from your friend?

“What are you thinking? How are you feeling? What have we done to each other? What will we do?”

Irene Jung (’16)

What do you do when you’ve grown apart from your friend?

LcKjazKcaNotes on friends drifting away:

Everyday, I meet lots of bodies, high-fives, quick smiles, and smalltalk. But you are, well, used to be, something different. A friend.

It’s sad that he/she is slowly becoming someone I don’t know. Desperately skimming through surfaces of old conversations, I try to pretend that the discontinuance is the momentary, necessary silence that friendships often go through. Somehow, I manage to find ways to avoid him/her while secretly wanting to approach him/her. I wish I had something to blame the disconnection on. That would make it a lot easier. But it’s no one’s fault. It’s not mine. It’s not their’s. It’s no one’s. Some things just happen.

But try to take a step back, and see what you might have done wrong to the relationship. It’s never easy to admit fault in yourself, but it’s always a good first step to make, since relationships are mutual. Don’t overthink to the point of feeling guilt though – that’s never healthy.

Make yourself more available to that person. Let him or her know that you are willing to open yourself up for conversation. Eventually one of you will need the courage to reach out, and the other will need the courage to respond.

But sometimes you will have to accept that it’s time to let go. Accept that your friend might be at a different emotional place. People change. Situations change. You and I change. It’s going to be like swallowing down thick, bitter cough syrup: disgusting, but healthy for you at the end of the day.

I’ve seen a lot of people fade away from the corner my eye. I hope that doesn’t happen with you.

tumblr_inline_n3rg12VVbE1riwpmj: Is your friend hanging out with someone new that’s not you? Are you both just too busy with schoolwork and lacking the time to interact? Perhaps, maybe one of you is holding a grudge? Well, whatever the reason may be for your friend drifting away, it’s a slow and conspicuous process. You’ll hear your conversations growing awkward and feel the atmosphere becoming tense. It’s hard.

But there are ways to reverse what happened, or what didn’t happen. The most reasonable thing to do would be to make an attempt to return to normality by remaining normal. Maybe it’s a passing phase. Remaining calm rather than growing obsessive towards the slight drift, will help your friend feel more welcome to return. If your friendship was a genuine one, your friend will come back when they can. Let time pass, but if your friend still doesn’t show the slightest interest in rebuilding your relationship, it’s time for you to take initiative. Fire up your Kakaotalk, start a casual conversation, ask your friend to hang out over the weekend or cafe study on the weekdays, and make an attempt to meet, talk, and communicate with your swaying friend.

If all else fails, I hate to advise this, but let your friend go. If you made an obvious attempt to want to grow close again and showed your friend how sincere you are about your friendship, you have done enough. If your friend showed such little respect to you, not only as a companion, but also as a person, it’s a clear sign that he or she is worth just that. You don’t have to be moping and contemplating on someone who refuses to spend the minimum amount of time with you. You shouldn’t be. You probably deserve better.

I know it’s not as easy as it sounds to let a heartwarming friend drift away. Yet, in the future, you’ll ponder back to today and tell yourself that you made the right choice. Of course, that is, after you gave your friendship a final try.

– The Blueprint Advice Team

*If you have any questions about friends, relationships, life, or just anything, email us at blueprint@kis.or.kr and we’ll answer them in the next column!

Header: Irene Jung (’16)

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