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Afraid of losing her friend in India

Published: February 13, 2016 | By | 5 Replies Continue Reading
When a friend moves away, a young woman worries about losing her friend.



My friend and I are in a pretty long distance relationship. She lives in India, and I live in the U.S. We sometimes send each other things (this just started happening) and when she’s online we talk. But after she started going to a school, there have been long periods of time without Internet connections (the school has no Wi-Fi whatsoever) and she’s been very distant.

I’ll be online and I’ll send a ‘Hey’ to her and she won’t respond until it’s about 1 or 2AM in the morning for me, or sometimes I won’t be online to answer. I’m terrified that I’m losing her because of the weather knocking out her Wi-Fi when she’s at home and that she’s not trying as hard as she did in the summer.

I’ve been putting aside so much time and effort to make sure that we stay in contact but the fact she doesn’t have the Wi-Fi and she can’t use her data is really putting me in a spot where I feel that I should try only as much as she does.

I’m not really comfortable calling her out because with the long distance, (I’m usually talking with her during my school time) I don’t want to start crying in the middle of some public space. Any advice would be amazing because my friend means a lot to me and as I said, I’m terrified about losing her.

Signed, Amita


Hi Amita,

As you’ve found out, it can be challenging to maintain long-distance friendships over different time zones. When people move away, their lives change as they become immersed in a new environment and meet new people. There also may be fewer things to talk about between you. That said, even though the day-to-day rhythms you’re used to may change, many people do maintain friendships with people who’ve moved far away and even get to see each other from time to time.

You said that your friend’s Internet connectivity is limited; in addition, she may be spending less time than you online as she gets used to a new school and new environment. There’s no reason to “call her out” because that might make things worse.

My suggestion would be for you to cut back on the frequency of your messaging—not only for your friend’s sake but also for yours. Although you want to maintain a friendship, it can’t be the same one you had before she moved out of the country. You also might try using email so you can respond to each other when it’s convenient rather than staying up late and worrying about missed messages.

It’s important that you don’t allow this one long-distance friendship to interfere with your schoolwork and potential friendships with the people around you at school and in your neighborhood.

Hope this helps!

Best, Irene

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Category: Communication, KEEPING FRIENDS

Comments (5)

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  1. Salstarat says:

    Amita, there is a tone of desperation about your email that you may be, unknowingly, transmitting to your friend in India. When friends become exceedingly “needy”, demanding or expecting too much from the relationship, it can put some people off. You need to realise that friendships change and friends will come and go in and out of your life .. this is PART of life and you cannot do anything about it. Yes, stay in contact by emailing her once a week but also use your time to foster relationships with OTHER people. Stay busy, take up a hobby etc where you can meet new people. If your friend has moved permanently to India, she may not come back and she may not even be able to afford to visit you any more … you will need to accept this. Unless YOU can afford to go and visit her for a short time, your friendship with her will, over time, diminish somewhat because it is very difficult to maintain a close bond with someone on-line whom you cannot contact on a regular basis. Don’t unfairly judge her if she is unable to contact you because India is a country that is still developing where technology is still problematic. Stay in contact with your friend but don’t become obsessed by the friendship and realise that your friend will probably be moving on with her life as well.

  2. Tanja says:

    Online relationships can get pretty difficult. I agree with setting once or twice a week a time to chat with your friend. But, the fear of abandonment is not a good one.

    I am going through this right now. The fear……I also do not believe that it is all in a person’s head. If a person feels it, there is probably some truth to what is going on.

    I have a local friend who actually was a newer friend to me. She helped me get a job etc. Now, it seems that after I got the job, she avoids me. She does not text me anymore. Today she saw me drop off my kids for karate and she avoided me and did not say hi. I would have approached her, but I really did not want to make her feel uncomfortable. So, I feel sad today. I do wonder why I have these issues. I do not have many friends. I have a hard time talking to people. My husband is my best friend and in theory, he should be all I need and my kids. However, according to what I read about parenting, kids actually do better emotionally, etc if they see their parents having friendships outside the marriage. Kids also love to have visitors. These are the things I did not think about before having kids. So, I feel I have to be more social for my kids but I feel people abandon me, they do not want to get closer. Forming close friendships is very hard for me. I like people to be at a distance, I suppose……

  3. Nadia says:

    Hmm I can relate to this to some extent. I have a few people who I consider as friends, and those relationships started in cyberspace because we had things in common. There was one girl who I talked to frequently four years ago. But things started changing when I became busy in working on my writing portfolio, and she had started a job as an illustrator.

    So the point here is, change is inevitable and our lives and things will continue to change. The closeness I once had with this girl changed, and I was okay with that, since I made more time for my in person relationships.

    Friends of all kinds are important as they enrich our lives in many ways, and if it’s a mix between online friendships and the people that are around you in person then you can balance the two out.

    I got closer with my friends who I know in person, however I also share passions with writing along side people who I contribute to an online publication from around the world. My co writers are located in the United States, to even the UK and I reside in Canada, and they are all down to earth.

    So online relationships are good too! It’s just a balancing act as you don’t want to forget the friends you do have offline.

    I hope I made sense! Best wishes.

  4. Amy F says:

    Once you start fearing losing a friend (abandonment?), you give away your power in the relationship. You start second guessing yourself and project your insecurities onto the other person including motivations that may or may not be present i.e. she’s not trying as hard as you are. You both have realtime lives outside of your online relationship which some would say need nurturing even more than online friendships, because they bring face to face social, educational and economic opportunities. I’m not saying your friendship isn’t special. It is. But you need a lot of trust and understanding to want the other person to have the best life experiences even when they can’t include you due to distance. Importance takes different forms with friends who aren’t local.

    Perhaps you can make a weekly or biweekly “date” to chat online, with backup times in case she has connectivity issues.

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