• Other Friendship Advice

Feeling like a friendship failure

November 21, 2016 | By | 1 Reply Continue Reading
A young teen feels like a friendship failure because several friendships are falling apart.

QUESTION

Hi I’m Megan!

Over the past year I’ve had a large number of friends whom I loved and one best friend. One weekend right after we had hung out, my best friend completely cut me off and ignored me. It was really hard because she was one of the few friends who had stuck with me over the course of the year.

Now during the school year it’s becoming increasingly hard for me because we share the same group of friends. One of her friends, who was a good friend of mine as well, has been distant and rude to me, and is constantly tearing me down.

I feel like my failure in holding on to friends. It’s just so hard to deal with and I feel lonely most of the time. It’s hard for me to form more bonds with people because all my friendships end anyway. Please help me! I don’t know whom else to turn to!

Thanks! Megan

ANSWER

Hi,

I’m sorry to hear you’re having trouble with a friend. When you share a group of friends, having difficulty with a friend can be quite awkward.

Ideally, healthy friendships engage in good communication so hurt feelings and other issues can be resolved quickly before they escalate. Being able to negotiate conflict takes two willing participants. Many teenagers (and some adults) haven’t yet learned to discuss frustrations in relationships.

Have you tried talking to your friends about your feelings? If you haven’t, try to avoid sounding accusatory, which makes people defensive, by using “I” statements. “I feel sad that we don’t talk as much as we used to.”

Looking at your own role in the end of friendships can be helpful, too, as long as you do so to learn— and not to beat yourself up. Think about the last few friendships that ended and see if you can find a common denominator. Perhaps you’re choosing the wrong friends, or maybe something in your interactions is off-putting.

Additionally, friendships in adolescence often change as teens develop at different rates and their interests diverge. You may no longer fit in with this particular group of friends, but be hanging on out of loneliness. Try branching out by talking with other classmates. You probably have potential friends at school that might feel intimidated in reaching out to you because you have a set group of friends.

Good luck, Megan!

Amy Feld


*Amy Feld, PhD, MSW has trained and worked as a child psychologist.

Disclaimer: Nothing in this or any other post is intended to substitute for medical, psychiatric or clinical diagnosis/treatment. Rather, all posts are written as the type of advice that one friend might give to another.

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Category: OTHER ADVICE, Teen friendships

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  1. Irene (the other one) :) says:

    Hi Megan,
    Sad to hear of this friend of yours. You know, reading through your comment a couple of times, I realise you share the same friends. It’s likely your problems stems from jealousy, (which comes under ‘hatred’) of one of those other friends, who may have told a lie about you. The person may have said that you said something derogatory about her, which is why she’s reacting in this way.

    I had an experience like this years ago now, and I was quite broken over it. On one occasion I mentioned to a very elderly woman, that I was bullied at work, and even by church people, who thought I was stupid because of what I looked like (nordic blond) she said: “Irene, it’s only because you’re pretty – they are jealous of you.” I never saw myself as particularly pretty, nor clever, and never imagined people would bully me for my looks.

    This woman was herself very good looking in her youth, and had experienced similar problems. Take heart, you may just be a ‘duckling in transition’. 🙂 By the time you become a swan your new lake may be far away from these people.

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