4 Signs You Know It’s Time to Let a Friendship Go

I have a tendency to hold on to friendships longer than I should because I am loyal and often worry that I may hurt their feelings if I begin to pull away.

Can you relate?

But the one thing that growing up has taught me is that life is about phases, changes, and breakthroughs, and you can’t be afraid to respond to the whispers (as Mama Oprah likes to say) and the writing on the wall when it time to move folk from the friendship zone to the holding cage of friendly strangers and acquaintances.

Here are four signs that it’s time to part ways with some of the people that you call friend.

When you see that they are calling, you let it go to voicemail: That is your intuition speaking to you. You let it go to voicemail because when you see their name on the caller ID, you get a visceral response. And basically, you want to avoid pain—which you subconsciously envision having to be fake, guarded, and full of pretense once you decide to speak.

If you don’t call, then they don’t reach out to you. Another sign that you need to let a friendship go is if you are doing all of the heavy emotional lifting of the friendship. If months go by and you don’t hear from your friend, unless they want your advice or for you to solve one of their problems, then it is safe to say that you should start cutting them loose from your VIP friendship roster. They obviously are not making the cut.

You both plan to meet, but never do. This is the “all talk, no action” friendship. You love texting or saying “Girl, so when are we going to get together,” there is absolute radio silence on the other end. I get it. We are all busy with our respective lives and that is okay. Just don’t say that you are good friends. Call it what it is— you are texting buddies and if staying in touch and communication requires more than pressing “send,” then it is not going to happen.

They feel threatened by your accomplishments. I have had a few (former) friends that would literally change the subject when I was in the middle sharing about the success of a particular passionate project or an obstacle I had been able to overcome. They threw this shade despite the hours of cheerleading and support that I genuinely gave to their shine. If you have haters clocked in friends’ clothing, protect your heart and run in the other direction, because their intentions are completely in favor of your failure.

If you feel like Mase from the recent InstaPurge on Instragram and fear that you will only have a few friends when you cut through the clutter, don’t forget this nugget: you don’t need a lot of friends, you just need good friends. And those are few and hard to come by. My mother-in-law always says, “If you can count the number of true friends that you have on one hand, then you can consider yourself blessed.”


Frugal Feministas—What do you think? Before the New Year, do you think you need to let some friendships stay in 2014? What are the signs that you letting you know?

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