Advanced search

Mumsnet has not checked the qualifications of anyone posting here. If you need help urgently, please see our domestic violence webguide and/or relationships webguide, which can point you to expert advice and support.

Dropping a friend- have you done this? How?

(71 Posts)
Phoenixfromashes Thu 16-Nov-17 22:44:16

Have you ever consciously dropped a close friend? If so, how?

This probably makes me sound awful but I have a friend I realise I can’t stay close with as it’s toxic for me. They blow hot and cold depending on the status of their relationship, are lovely and a great friend for periods of time but then things turn and the can be a bit mean. I end up getting far too sucked into their dramas and find myself overinvested, and while we are together I enjoy their company when I think about it later I feel drained and sad. Things are good now but I find myself waiting for when they aren’t again.

Has anyone managed to back away before? If so is it best to tell them or do the slow fade?

theliterarycat Thu 16-Nov-17 22:46:59

Yes. Sometimes such friendships gave come to an abrupt end for a reason or snother. Other times you just slowly fade. Either way it’s best aknowledged and done as it’s deteimental to both.

Phoenixfromashes Thu 16-Nov-17 22:49:58

As a woman in my late 30s with pretty good friendships otherwise I am also perplexed that I have such immature friendship dramas at all ...

theliterarycat Thu 16-Nov-17 23:07:18

Oh there’s plenty of that this side of 40 don’t you worry. The Only saving grace is that one hopefully can spot it early and lets thing not develop too much or let it fizzle out at the early stages.
Who needs drama when not a teen.

HipsterAssassin Thu 16-Nov-17 23:07:28

Oh yes, me, am now very low contact with a previously very close friend of over twenty years.

I was in psychotherapy and realised it was too close immature/drama fuelled. I have been very clear about the issues but she just can’t hear it. So ended up going slow fade.

It’s hard not to feel for her as she’s still stuck in that mode. There will always be a tinge if sadness. But I gave her plenty of chances. When I feel the tinge of sadness I just remind myself as my therapist said ‘I outgrew the friendship - it happens’. Simples.

I still see her every now and then (and it’s fine although I’m always on guard) but never one to one any more.

I feel sort of proud of myself for maintaining the boundary - it’s good! I’m a friend to myself!

Lordamighty Thu 16-Nov-17 23:17:17

Yes, friends of 30 years, slow fade as I don't want a big confrontational drama. We seem to be incompatible these days.

Phoenixfromashes Thu 16-Nov-17 23:20:18

That sounds ideal hipster - how did you do it?

And Lord how did you slow fade without drama?

nightshade Thu 16-Nov-17 23:22:37

Conscious decision not to answer calls text etc...

Usually after a particular episode that has left me compromised..

Maintain the boundary..for years!!

theliterarycat Thu 16-Nov-17 23:25:57

Sometimes drama cannot be avoided if the ither person is so inclined.
If you invite less often, respond less often, show less keeness but the ither person insists ir accuse you then you have drama. Most adults would just get on with their lives though.

Myheartbelongsto Thu 16-Nov-17 23:27:28

I've recently dripped a friend. She tried it on with my boyfriend, I dropped her home and haven't spoken to her since. It was easy, I just ignored her texts and calls. She had quite a nasty accident soon after, felt terrible for her but still sat on my hands.

Lordamighty Thu 16-Nov-17 23:31:06

Phoenix - the slow fade is ongoing. I have had fantastic times in the past with these friends <married couple> but the dynamic no longer works. I don't want to leave the friendship on a sour note but it has run it's course.

RavingRoo Thu 16-Nov-17 23:31:47

Ghost them. It’s the only sure fire way of ending a toxic relationship for good

SingingSeuss Thu 16-Nov-17 23:45:52

It depends. I have de-friended someone who was really rude to my dh. It was traumatic and involved me telling her she was out of order but no regrets. I have also just let some friendships fade out by not getting in contact and responding briefly or not at all to any contact. Neither felt great but at least with the have it out all was in the open.

StaplesCorner Fri 17-Nov-17 00:07:40

I've had to ghost two female friends mostly because of their overt racism, posting rubbish about immigrants taking all the houses etc on facebook.

It was odd because both them were also unwilling and unhappy to be with me - we all have young teens, we used to go out, have coffee or a drink etc., - but in the end they would never get in a photo with me, would only spare a strict 1 to 1.5 hours or so for our meet ups and then I'd see they'd post they were out having a lovely time with other people. So in the end, when I finally received what had become a once yearly "duty" invitation to have a coffee I said no I am too busy, all the best and blocked them on everything. I've written this as if we were part of a group but in fact these women don't know each other! (Maybe its me!)

So another vote for ghosting.

Headfullofdreams Fri 17-Nov-17 00:18:11

Yes, a toxic one about six years ago. Was the best move ever.

SheRaaarghPrincessOfPower Fri 17-Nov-17 00:24:28

I've just been dropped by someone I considered a very close friend. I fucked up, badly, but apparently I'm dead to her now.

I've been in situations where long term friendships haven't worked out, but there have always been conversations. Never just ghosting.
Obviously if someone is toxic or does something unforgivable, that's one thing, but if someone has been your friend for decades then surely you at least owe them some sort of explanation?

anxiousnow Fri 17-Nov-17 00:25:48

I would never ghost anyone unless they did something really bad. Gently fading or being honest is the best way.
Someone trying it in with your oh or equally as bad is different. Ignoring them is fine and doesn't really count as ghosting. Ghosting is when you let the other person believe you have a good friendship and then disappear. That isn't fair imo.

AndTheBandPlayedOn Fri 17-Nov-17 00:37:48

Yes, your schedule is full/you can't plan that far ahead.

It was my sister. She lives 80 miles away.

I did tell her "I am taking a break from our relationship" but also faded and tapered off on the birthday and Christmas gifts. She had this matriarchal script going so when I stopped calling, she wouldn't call me as it was a breech of her perceived hierarchy. Result.

Inexperiencedchick Fri 17-Nov-17 02:12:07

7 years of friendship as for the past 3 we are not close at all.
I don't have Muslim friends apart from you and if you would like to be my friend you should become a Christian. I stand my ground, that was 3 years ago when she got involved in religion completely. No offence to anyone. I tried to maintain the relationship between us for quite a long time now but 2 months ago blocked her completely when she told she became sick/unwell after I sent her a text of me being in bed with the flue. So I transmeted my desease via text. I haven't even bothered to say something, just blocked her.
Sad but there is no way further to be honest...

coffeeX10 Fri 17-Nov-17 06:08:18

I’ve done it twice. Don’t think it can be called ghosting as surely they’d be aware that their behaviour caused it but then again they were both quite egocentric so maybe neither are aware why it happened.
One friend became my friend (we were just acquaintances before then) when she needed someone to support her through a traumatic break up so that’s what I did, we were friends for about 6 years after that point but she couldn’t be a friend who was supportive and would only do talk of designer handbags and holidays, for a while that was fine, I had my dh, family and good friends who supported me through recurrent miscarriage so I didn’t miss out in that respect. It was when I finally got my happy ever after bundle my little baby girl and she’d pretend she didn’t exist! Never asked how she was or if she wanted to do something together it was strictly no babies allowed and no compromise. So I dropped her and feel much better for it.

Other friend we met at college age 16. was happiest when someone else was unhappy - racist on fb, hated every woman who was on tv and posted over zealous rants of why she hated them
Etc etc, just too bitter and nasty. She’d make an excellent online troll. Ghosted that one too.

HipsterAssassin Fri 17-Nov-17 07:00:10

With my friend I just make the conversation all superficial ie how are the kids, how’s your mum etc. make it clear that the intimate details of my life are off the agenda. Even if I am struggling with something in life I always rely ‘yep it’s all great’.

There are certain things I no longer talk about -esp her husband who she massively enables. She loves to talk about his mental health. I no longer discuss any of it or show any interest or ask after him.

There was a massive betrayal by her when I was struggling after my separation. She kept undermining me moving on. So I had to leave her behind. Can see her in a group though.

AmeliaFlashtart Fri 17-Nov-17 07:16:08

Slow fade, no big confrontation, you just become 'busy for the forseeable' too busy to speak but will call back (but don't) repeat etc. Yes I've done it a few times over the years, its. Not really done consciously I just get to the stage where I can't maintain the friendship any more (toxic, negative, draining etc)

Phoenixfromashes Fri 17-Nov-17 07:21:53

All good advice!

This will be hard - since posting I've already heard from them twice (not in the UK so different timezone). I suspect at times we're a little co-dependent as well, so it kinda feels like lopping off a limb to me as well. But ... this cannot continue. I get constantly sucked into their dramas which I then think about far too much, and so on.

StrawberryJelly00 Fri 17-Nov-17 07:25:51

I’m currently slow-fading on a friend I have known for many years.
Since becoming a mother, my priorities have changed and I am so protective - the friend is not compatible with that.

I went from texting daily in response to them to responding every other day, then once a week, then every 2 the moment they still bother to text me but at some point they will stop.
It’s mostly junk mail and spam gifs which I used to find funny before poo & sick and nappies and milk became the feature of my life lol

MeganBacon Fri 17-Nov-17 07:26:33

I ghosted someone about five years ago and there has been no contact since, and it was sadly the best thing for both of us. We were best friends for years and she could be great company and a good friend, but in the later years she was very abusive and envious of every bit of joy I managed to get hold of. I found it massively draining to talk about her problems when she only ever wanted me to agree that it was all anyone's fault but hers. I felt I couldn't expose ds to all her dramas any more. But from her point of view, I'm sure she saw my suggestions as belittling and unsupportive. The whole dynamic wasn't good for either of us. I think ghosting was the only way, but I still feel sad about it and hope she's okay.

Join the discussion

Registering is free, easy, and means you can join in the discussion, watch threads, get discounts, win prizes and lots more.

Register now »

Already registered? Log in with: