How to Get Over the Loss of a Best Friend

Everyone has friends that come and go but there are some friends who stay really close and seeing them go away can be taken real deeply. Read this article to learn what you should do when you've lost a best friend and how you can feel better and try to make it better


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    Break off a friendship that you feel must end for various reasons that will benefit your life. If you have carefully considered the options and have come to your decision by considering all factors and trying various ways to avoid this, then you must do it. It is one of the hardest things to do in life especially if you have endured many obstacles and emotional moments with that person. An attachment to a person can sometimes be harder to let go of than a romantic one. But if you feel it is better for you in the long run, then chances are that you must do it. Letting go, throwing in the towel, severing ties and knowing when to quit are not easy things to do. It takes an immense amount of courage, bravery and thought to end something that you've desperately want to cling onto.
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    Realize whether the problems between are you and your best friend were surmountable or not. You can do this by writing a journal entry about your honest feelings about the friendship over the years (and do not sugar coat, do not employ euphemisms. Be direct and 100% truthful). If you realize that your problems are not surmountable, acknowledge that and make your first step forward. Chances are if the problems of your friendships were repetitious and became patterns, regardless of your attempts to fix it, things will not change.
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    Understand that the friendship ended for a reason. Whether you end the friendship or the other person does (or in some cases, gradual distance between two people becomes more permanent), acknowledge that the friendship ended for reasons. The core reason can be anything from the unhealthy, bad nature of a friendship or simply that you flourished into two very different individuals overtime.
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    Make a clean break. For some people it is important for them to try to make a clean break from the other person. Despite the fact your best friend was not an object of romantic interest from you, the severance of a friendship over several years can feel very similar to a painful break up. This is not say that you are not allowed to greet or politely converse with the person during social events but for some people the reminder of their old friend can be a hindrance in their ability to move forward with their lives. For those who can manage keeping your old friends on Facebook, Twitter, emails, Instant Messages and phones, it is fine. However, it seems like it would be easier if reminders weren't ubiquitous on such personal places.
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    Try not to substitute anger and corrosive hatred for sorrow and grief over the loss of your friend. Before you act with your anger/resentment fueling your decisions, take a breath and do try to acknowledge that it is not the best time to execute any rash choices. You are allowed to feel angry with the other person or yourself; it happens in nature. People can berate themselves while blaming the other person for wasting copious amounts of their time, their emotions and their life on the other person. You must overcome this. Anger will not lead to progress or bliss.
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    Allow yourself some time to heal from your friendship. Friendships can often be taken for granted and oftentimes until the loss of a friend, people will never truly realize how much exactly a friendship meant to them. Perhaps take 4-5 days off to heal. Sad movies, sad music, sad journal entries, sad poems...the works. And the sometimes inevitable water works. Understand that you are permitted and at full liberty to grieve your friendship. Even if no one else understands precisely how you felt, you are allowed to feel the loss of someone that preoccupied your time.
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    Make a pro and con list about your past friendship. It will give you the opportunity to see why your friendship failed, what you didn't do that could potentially improve your relationships with your remaining friends, why you should not be friends with that person anymore etc. You might be surprised to see how you truly feel about your friend. Perhaps even an underlying happiness for the conclusion of your friendship might reveal itself—for whatever reason (you feel as though they manipulated you, you feel as though your friend decreased your confidence, you feel as though your friend used you etc.)
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    Realize that sometimes best friends are not always "forever". Sometimes best friends are only intended to be best friends over an allotted period of time—maybe your time with that person is up. Maybe it was not your fault, maybe it was not their fault, maybe it was your fault, maybe it was their fault, maybe it was no one's fault, maybe it was both your faults. It doesn't matter—facts are facts: the friendship has ended. Truth is, sometimes ALL kinds of relationships (platonic, romantic etc.) are simply meant to come to an end. For whatever reason that relationship has been exhausted.
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    Reflect on what you could have done better. Whether it was a friendship that fizzled out naturally or a friendship that had to be ripped from the roots out of the ground, there is always something you can try to improve. So do it for yourself and for your future friends. Want to improve yourself FOR yourself and the life ahead of you. Be motivated to be the best person you can be.
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    Get busy and get healthy! After a period of time, get to exercising, go see friends and take time off of your day to try new activities that you, independently, wanted to try. Keep from trying new things that you wanted to do with your former friend together. It will only be a stinging reminder. Even if you feel as though you cannot continue forward without the friend that you believed to have been the closest with, your friendship has ended and you will get better with time and with determination. And you will find new friends sooner or later. So get busy!
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    Get input from your family. Friends come and friends go, but family is always there (and not just blood family, but whatever you consider to be your family). So talk to the people that matter to you the most and they will have your back. Your mother, your father, your cousin, your sister, your brother, your aunt, your uncle, your step-sister, your sister-in-law, whoever, the friend that is basically your blood sister/brother... go back to your roots. The people who have genuinely been there for you since the beginning in order for you to realize that these people are the "forever" that your friend was not.
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    Keep talking to the friends you've kept and make new ones. You never know who will be that friend that you can always turn to. Friends are just waiting to be made and sometimes you just have to take that first step and initiative. So don't be worried and don't be scared. Talk to them! You'll find a new best friend some day!
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    Look out of your window. When you look out, realize how many beautiful things there are in this world. Terrible things could have happened (such as your friend's death), but there are many positive things to think about (such as you got a better job than your other friend).


  • Do try to avoid trying to seek revenge on the other person or spitefully/unfairly casting blame on the other person. It will bring you no serenity or true happiness. Recognize that being vindictive is not a quality that people will admire. Do not act in spite; you will find yourself cringing and feeling remorseful in the future. Being a class act is always the way to go.
  • Do not spread malicious rumours or exaggerate qualities you disliked in the other person when you are at an emotional peak of immense resentment or anger. Not only are you tarnishing the reputation of the other person but you will not come off looking good either. This is not to say that you cannot be honest or blunt with your closest friends and your family, but telling every person who asks you about your situation is certainly not a necessity. Give a generic answer like, "we just grew distant and we don't talk as often anymore".
  • Losing a friend happens to everyone. Don't feel like you're the only one person that has experienced the loss of a friend. Friendships have been severed many times in history. So talk to your friends; someone is sure to empathize/sympathize with you and talk you through it.
  • Be safe. Don't do anything that you'll regret.
  • Do the right thing for you! Keep healthy! Sleep well, see friends, keep living (it is not the end of the world), keep cleaning. Keep from drinking alcohol, doing drugs (although you should avoid this for your own overall health), doing reckless/thoughtless things when you are mourning the loss of any relationship. Acting carelessly will not bring you happiness, progress or your friend back.
  • Learn from the mistakes with your past friendship. This friendship did not work out for a reason so carry your lessons with you for the rest of your life. Experiences are not just an accessory you have on your belt. Then they'd be useless. Utilize your experiences and use them as lessons as to ensure that mistakes are not repeated.
  • Sometimes, a long time after the friendship has ended you'll find yourself thinking about your friend and what could've happened. Just focus on the happier things and you'll once again have a positive outlook on life. Try your best to just keep your head up and go on with your life.

Things You'll Need

  • True friends
  • Family

Article Info

Categories: Changing and Losing Friends