Letting go of a friendship
All I can give is my perspective, but from what I've learned is that the pain of letting go of friendship is hard, it takes work, you need to forgive, find peace and move on.
Letting go of a friendship should be faced like you would a break-up. When you choose to let someone go, you should choose to remove them from every aspect of your life; coming into contact with them, phone calls, texting, social media...because whenever we have a glimpse of that person it makes letting them go that much harder. With time, we can often forget why we let go of that person in the first place, so you need to make sure you cut all communication off. It'll also make it easier for you to let them go fully.
Figure out why. Why are choosing to let this person go? Maybe they've hurt you, they've become a negative part of your life more than a positive one, they don't support you, they don't share the same values and morals you do or simply, maybe they're not a good friend...whatever the reason, find it. This will help you remember when you get upset or feel regretful with letting them go. You have to remind yourself of why they aren't benefiting your life or your growth as an individual.
Self. Through this life, we are all on a journey to find self-actualization (defined as-the realization or fulfillment of one's talents and potentialities, especially considered as a drive or need present in everyone.) The drive is to find our happiness, to find what makes each one of us, unique, different. Therefore, sometimes paths with friends don't always merge. Time reveals to us that certain people don't benefit our self-actualizing journey. Some people are there to move us to our next path in life. Sometimes we couldn't get there without them, but that doesn't mean they come with us. You need to find it in yourself that this life is yours and you can't always hold others on your path, they need to find their own and themselves.
Memories. Ah, what a horrible and yet beautiful gift we've been given to hold onto the numerous memories we have with so many different people. So, this is where letting go can be difficult. There's going to be times when you remember those moments; numerous lunches, dinners, days out, days in, days together...all these fun and enjoyable times. Think of them fondly and appreciate them for what that they were, but life is not about reliving moments...instead it's about continuing to make new ones and you will.
Live in the moment. As you start to let this friendship go, remember that life is not lived in the past nor the future, but in the present. The more you bring yourself to the present, the more you can enjoy your life and let go of that friendship.
Time. Time, time, time...simply, just let time do it's thing. You have to give yourself time to heal and process the absence of the friendship. In time, you will slowly regain yourself and move on. However, during this time feel all the emotions that come on. Some days will be better than others and that's okay...because this is all the process.
I had to let go of a truly close friend when I was entering college. We had been best, best friends for 10 years. She no longer made me feel like I could trust her and it was a truly sad moment that I can still remember, but it was the right choice.
When you have a best friend that you share everything with, plan a future with, make so many memories with...you rarely think of the possibility of not being friends. Well, that's exactly what happened. There were three of us and we did absolutely everything together since we were in fifth grade. Things started to change as we got older and a major moment was she started to date my first boyfriend after we had broken up and they are still dating to this day (there's a lot of things that happened in-between, but I won't bore you with the details.) Honestly, they're definitely better together than him and I were and maybe my part that I played in her life was to connect them together. I look back and realize without her I wouldn't have gotten to where I am. I might have taken a different path when I was younger, so I will always appreciate the time we had together. I wish the best for her life and there's always something beautifully sad that I will never get to share those moments we planned, but I cherish the time we had that friendship. I think I realize that life is hard and harder by yourself. Friendships make it easier, but when a friendship makes you feel equally alone then it's better to be without that person.
This is the bittersweetness of life...constantly changing...the more you fight it the more you will live unhappily, so just roll with it.
From client to client and from my own perspective, the unsettling feeling of change can be hard to move through. Change that we have to adapt with certain people we thought would be there forever. Some of these people come into our lives for short periods of times and some for longer, but to understand that we have to be okay to let people go. Letting go of a friendship is inevitability like a break-up...realize it's for the best, hold the memories dear, wish the best for the individual(s) and make yourself happy. Pain, sadness, anger are all normal emotions when letting someone go, so feel them when they come. You need go through all the ups and downs as you would any separation. In time, you'll learn to live a different life and it will be just as good, so just give yourself the time to get through that and cope in a healthy manor.
Just a reminder...sometimes because we've been burned by people we can often have a hard time giving our friendship to others. So learn to not bring your past into my present. Let yourself meet and have fun with different people, because we can establish connections at all ages of our lives.