How To Break Up With A Friend


How To Break Up With A Friend
Breaking up with guys? Got it down. Tossing a toxic gal pal? Not so easy, but it can be done.

After years of experience, I've got breaking up with guys down to a science — a once useful skill which, now that I'm happily married, I hope I'll never have to use again! But breaking up with friends? That's a lot tougher to do.

"In a relationship you're expected to choose one partner and if it's not working out, then you move on to the next person," says Piper Weiss, senior features editor for Yahoo! Shine. "With friends, there's no pre-prescribed amount you can have."

Related: Are You Carrying Your Weight in Your Friendships?

And that leaves you in danger, she says, of coming off like a jerk--even if you have a really good reason for wanting to sever ties. "If you're breaking up with a true and special friend, they have to do something so clear cut and offensive to you that you physically can't be near them. If it's just a clinger, they require some slow, plotted shaking off so their feelings don't get too hurt." How To Talk To Men

For the casual clinger, Weiss suggests treating the situation like you would a guy you only went on a few dates with. "I’m all for the 'so busy this month, maybe next' line," she says. "It doesn't have to be a big thing." Even easier if it's an online acquaintance you're trying to shake. You can block them or just ignore their Facebook posts. Eventually most people will take the hint.

Related: The Short-Term Best Friend

Acquaintances in your same social group may be a bit trickier as you're going to end up running into them often in the future. "They might want to be closer to you and you just tolerate them. They're fine until they start talking behind your back or manipulating their way into your friend circle by creating drama."

Weiss suggests first trying to ignore them. But if they demand attention, pull them aside and lay it on the line. "You're rubbing me the wrong way. Sorry if I sound like a jerk, but I’m just letting you know I really need a little distance from you." Hopefully they'll back off a bit, but be prepared for a few chilly nights ahead.

Related: Can Virtual Friends Be Better Than Real Life Friends?

As for the long term friend, well, come on, you owe them an honest conversation at the very least, even if you end up pulling out the "It's not you, it's me" card. But before you schedule that talk, Weiss says, you'd better make sure you know what you want. "Confrontations with friends can escalate quickly and things can be said you regret." Are You a Good Listener?

Next: Keep reading...

More Juicy Content From YourTango:

This article was originally published at . Reprinted with permission from the author.

Share this with someone you love (or even like a lot)!

Let's make it
FB official
Recent Expert Posts
Friends lunching

Want to Derail Your Relationship? Listen to this Common Advice

Advice from well-meaning friends and family doesn't always help and may even be harmful.

Guy Checking Out Woman At The Market

When Temptation Strikes: Dealing With Attraction to Someone Else

Is natural for human beings to be emotionally or physically attracted to others?

Tips For Re-Entering The Dating Scene After Divorce

10 Tips For Re-Entering The Dating Scene After Divorce

Divorced? It's time for you to get out and meet your match!

Ask The Experts

Have a dating or relationship question?
Visit Ask YourTango and let our experts and community answer.

How to find the right pro for you
10 Reasons Mental Health Pros Should Join YourTango Experts

10 Reasons Mental Health Pros Should Join YourTango Experts

YourTango Experts can help your business go from good to great.

10 Steps To Improve Your Coaching Business

Take your coaching business from mediocre to great in no time…

Frequently Asked Questions About YourTango Experts

Thinking of joining? Here's all the facts you need to know to make the most of your membership.

Getting Your Guy To Join You In A Therapy Or Coaching Session

So how can your get your strong, self-reliant, superman to talk to an Expert with you?

Therapist/Counselors: Who We Are & What We Do

What exactly does a therapist/counselor do and can they really help?

See more resources>