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    19 Things Everyone Should Do After A Friend Breakup

    Because the end of a friendship can be heartbreaking too.

    1. Decide if the friendship is worth fighting for.

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    If you've just fallen out with a friend, or are on the verge of a permanent parting of ways, be absolutely sure you want things to end – are your problems unfixable, did they do something truly unforgivable, or are they a toxic person who's not going to change?

    If you still want them as a friend, consider being the bigger person and apologising, or reaching out. There are worse things than being the one to bend first. And if they still don't want to work it out, at least you know you did everything you could.

    2. Make a list of the reasons the friendship is over.

    3. Give yourself time to grieve.

    4. Be like Sweden.

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    i.e Neutral. i.e. DO NOT chat shit about your ex-friend to your mutual friends. I know, it's tempting. You want them to choose you. You want them to agree that your ex-friend is a total crazy person and completely wrong. You want them to be on YOUR SIDE. But trash talking them won't achieve any of that – it'll just make you look negative and petty.

    A good friend doesn't put friends in an uncomfortable position by demanding they choose between their former friend and them. And no matter what your ex-friend may think of you, you are fully capable of taking the high ground. With maybe one or two drunken slip ups along the way.

    5. Be honest.


    Talking to your friends about how your ex-partner cheated on you is very different to talking to them about how your ex-friend hates you because you stayed at their house and didn't offer to wash up. It feels a lot more vulnerable – what if they think the same thing?

    But talking to your friends will make you feel so much better (as long as they're not mutual friends. See point 4).

    Be upfront about what happened. Maybe they were a dick, but maybe you were a bit of a dick too. Resist the urge to retell the story purely from your perspective. Talking candidly with a good friend can be a great way to get perspective on the situation.

    6. Don't freak out.


    In the same vein, the instinct after a losing a friend is often to pull your remaining friends closer, scared they'll leave too. Take a deep breath, and try not to panic. Talk to your friends about it. You don't have to go into detail, but letting them know you're going through a rough patch will prepare them for any unusual behaviour.

    If they're good friends, they'll be there for you, but it's also up to you to try and keep your fears and anxieties in check (this is a mantra I have to repeat to myself daily).

    7. Talk to your family.


    Blood is thicker than water. For a lot of people, this may not be true, but I'm lucky in that I have a family who's always there for me no matter what. If you're feeling vulnerable about your friends, try turning to your family for support – if anyone's going to love you unconditionally, it's them.

    8. Detox your social media.

    9. Cry.


    Because bottling your feelings up is never good. Like a pressure cooker, it will come out in other ways. Case in point: after a terrible friend breakup, I tried to act like it was ok far quicker than I should have. A few months later and an offhand comment from a friend had me bursting into inexplicable tears, much to her surprise. Remember, it's ok to be upset, and it's definitely ok to cry.

    10. Know when to back away.


    Closure can be great, but it's not the be all and end all. If an argument with a friend becomes destructively nasty, turns into a character assassination or slides into a game of one-up-man-ship, WALK AWAY. If they're not taking anything you're saying on board, there's no point staying in the conversation, and getting the last word isn't worth sticking around while someone uses you as an emotional punching bag.

    A good way to avoid this situation is to only criticise them if it's really something they need to hear – are you truly trying to help them, or are you just trying to get one last dig in? If it's the latter, keep it to yourself.

    Plus, not telling them they're a massive douchecanoe might pay off later, or at least save you some awkwardness.

    11. Write out your feelings.

    12. Work out what you'd do if you ran into them.

    20th Century Fox

    This may not go to plan. There's every chance you'll still get flustered, or even turn tail and run when it comes to crunch time. But working out in your head a rough script of what you'll say and how you'll act if you bump into your former friend will mean there's at least a good chance of you not turning bright red and mumbling something incoherent.

    13. Learn to love your own company.

    14. Reflect on what you could have done better.


    No one's perfect. While your friendship may be over for perfectly good reasons, you should always take the opportunity to be a little introspective. Your flaws are part of what make you unique, and you'll never fully iron all of them out (nor should you want to)... but no harm ever came from being a little more self-aware.

    And to my fellow deeply-flawed humans: Take heart in the knowledge that people who are intolerant of flaws in others don't have many friends either.

    15. Write down what qualities you look for in a friend.


    Why didn't this friendship work out? What was it about them that made you clash? Maybe they were too extroverted, and you need someone more introverted. Maybe they were a neat freak and you're helplessly messy. If you think about what went wrong, you can work out what qualities to look for in the future.

    More importantly, it's worth looking at your incompatibilities to see if you notice a pattern. If they were toxic, why did you choose them in the first place? If you're continually making friends with a certain type of person, now's the time to break the habit.

    16. Do activities where you'll meet new people.

    17. Hide anything that will remind you of them.

    18. Try not to hold a grudge.

    20th Century Fox / Via

    Be mad. Curse them and shake your fist at the sky. Then move on. Maybe they were a complete and total asshat to you, but all you can do is remove them from your life, learn from it and try to forget them. People are asshats to each other ALL THE TIME. They're not the first to be an asshat, and they definitely won't be the last.

    If you need an outlet for your rage, take up kickboxing, or consider seeing a therapist to talk about it in a safe space. Or send them a glitter bomb. But don't let your anger at them fester – the only person it will hurt is you.

    19. Know that you're not alone.

    I don't know if it's just me, but I've always felt a lot more embarrassed talking about failed friendships than failed relationships. A romantic breakup can happen for a number of reasons that don't have anything to do with you. But if someone doesn't want to be your friend, they just plain don't like you, which is a much more brutal rejection IMO.

    The thing is though, I know hardly anyone who hasn't gone through a friend breakup. For proof please read this, and this and this. Friendships come and go. You grow, you change, you fall out, you maybe make up. It's all part of life.

    What I'm trying to say is: you're not alone. This year, I've made new friends, but I've also had some of my worst friend breakups to date. It was shit. But I'm ok. Every day, I get more OK. And believe me, you will be OK too.

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