Reactions to Losing Friends:
Years have passed and with every moment that has gone by, I always try to answer the same question: Why does it seem that all of my friends eventually leave me?
Over the timeline of nearly 29 years, I have met many people and I’ve lost just as many. I have spent countless hours questioning my ability to make and maintain friendship, even to the point of wondering if building these relationships were even worth the pain that it eventually caused.
I discovered that there are usually three reasons why a friendship doesn’t last and then there are our reactions that produced from the situation.
We outgrow each other- When we first meet new people and we create a connection we tend to build a relationship around that activity or interest. For example, we often bond over bands or musicians that we like; or we bond over sports. Too often, we begin to grow up and too often we out grow certain relationships. There is nothing wrong with this at all. To be honest, it’s natural. As we get older our interests transform and change. Due to that fact, we often become distant from those that we were once close to.
Our busy schedules- As we grow from children to adolescence to adults we naturally become busier. We turn our interests into our hobbies and if we are really lucky; our hobbies become our careers, but often that means that we have less time to spend with family, friends and loved ones. The way that we prioritize our times around our careers, our spouses, kids and then our extracurricular activities; it makes it difficult to keep in touch with everyone. In Lieu to this, we often loose friends that we once had. This is not bad, neither; it is a part of life. This particular category is interesting due to the fact that you are still friends with that person, yet the truth is both went their separate ways. If you were able to, and willing to, you could always contact the individual and re-connect with the one-time friend.
The fall out- When we don’t lose our friends from outgrowing interests, too often we lose our friends from an argument or a disagreement. At times we throw away a friendship or a bond because the two parties are unable to put their differences aside and come to an agreement. It seems as if this is the worst category to lose a friend to because it is the most difficult one to come back from. Naturally we, as humans, have a difficult time seeing and understanding the point of view of those that we disagree with.
As the lessons are learned, growth is able to take place. However, growth only takes place when we see the opportunity to grow and we react accordingly. It is only through our reactions that we are able to fully understand the effect that takes place in our lives.
Reaction: Anytime that you lose a friend, for any reason, it leaves a void in our hearts and in our lives. We often deal with it in a variety of ways. Some of them are healthy and productive and some of them are not.
Sadness- Often times we feel sadness or even depressed because we feel like we have lost a major part of ourselves. We feel like we can’t breathe without sharp pain piercing our hearts. This sadness could last a short period of time with a quick recovery time or it could last months, making it more difficult to fully recover.
Acceptance- While one of the parties may not be happy about the distance, they both still must to acceptance that they are separated. They must learn to live without each other and still function. We must continue living.
The further I think through these categories and our reactions, the further down the rabbit hole I find myself. I get a question answered and I soon find another to answer. As I gain an understanding of the first level, I discover the second level; my journey continues. After we identify our reason for the separation, and we react to the situation we are with one next level: What is this situation teaching us?
Remember the good times- When we begin to move on and recover from losing our best friend, we still carry with us the memories that we created over our time together. If the relationship ended on a falling out, it is easy only remember the difficult times or the person’s faults throughout your time together. However, we must remember the great things that bonded us in the first place.
While we need to remember the good times, these good times should not overtake the reason why the relationship didn’t work. If the relationship was unhealthy for one or both parties involved, then it was for the best that the relationship fell apart.
In the end, when you are able to remember the good aspects of the relationship, you are able to let go of the negative effect that the relationships filled you with, which is healthier for you and the other person involved. Holding on to bitterness doesn’t hurt anyone except the one holding on to it.
Don’t be afraid to keep trying- As the years go by and we lose friends and we meet new people, creating new bonds, we learn one thing: there are plenty of great people to meet and bond with throughout the years. Although, if we allow our broken relationships to destroy or adventurous spirit to meet new people; we will never get the chance to grow in this way.
We must keep growing and learning about the world around us and the best way to do that is through relationships: Meeting new people! Each person is important and each person has something to offer.
Even though we want to give us and throw in the towel, we can’t give up! Get up, get out there and build bonds with the world!
Anthony K. Giesick
Actions are taken everyday that help make this world better and I just want to share them with you.