Why It’s Okay to End Some Friendships Even When It’s Painful for You

Lovers come and go; but friends stay forever — or do they?

Some people think that breakups only happen in romantic relationships, but it could happen to friendships, too. And sometimes, it’s for the best. No matter how much you treasure your relationships, there will come a time when you can’t (and are not obliged) to maintain all of them, especially if it’s not doing you any good emotionally and mentally.

“A good friendship is a wonderful antidepressant“, says psychologist Janice Kiecolt-Glaser, director of the Institute for Behavioral Medicine Research at the Ohio State University College of Medicine in Columbus. “Relationships are so powerful, we don’t always appreciate the many levels at which they affect us.”

Now that you’re older and wiser, it’s time to be more careful when it comes to selecting friends you really want to spend the rest of your life with. Think of these as investments. It’s about time to cherish those who have stuck with you through thick and thin, and just let go of the toxic relationships that are stressing you out more.

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Besides, letting go doesn’t mean you’ll leave them forever. For all you know, the break up could lead both of you to realize mistakes and end bad habits. Here are instances it’s completely understandable to cut the cord:

It’s always about them.

Whenever you try to open up about a problem, they always find a way to lead the conversation back to them and before you know it, all you hear is “I, me, and my.” So during those times when you needed a shoulder to cry on or advice on what to do, you ended up listening to their stories (that are likely to be repetitive).

You feel controlled or manipulated.

Have you ever felt the “friendship card” used on you? It’s when they ask you for a favor you’re uncomfortable doing yet they subtly force you to do it by saying, “Sige na, friends naman tayo eh.” Seriously, this could be one of the worst feelings since there’s a lack in sincerity. It begs the question of whether or not you’re really friends to begin with.

Everything is a competition to them.

Whether that’s at work or your love lives, everything seems to be a challenge for them to do better than you. And sometimes, instead of being happy for you and your accomplishments, they tend to get jealous and turn your win into something negative.

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They always bring you down.

Naturally, friends are supposed to knock some sense into each other from time to time, but when they give constant (and unsolicited) negative feedback that’s not even called for in a situation, then you may want to think twice if your friendship is even worth it. Your friends should be your support group, not people who hurt you and put you down.

You don’t feel like yourself around them.

If you feel uncomfortable in their company, then maybe they’re not the right circle of friends for you. No real friend would want to make you doubt yourself or even make you feel bad about being who you are. So if you must, try to re-evaluate your relationships and see if they’re worth keeping. Remember, it’s okay to put yourself first, because at the end of the day, when everyone and everything is gone, all that will remain is YOU.

This story originally appeared on FemaleNetwork.com.

* Minor edits have been made by the Smartparenting.com.ph editors.

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