• Keeping Friends

My Friend Is Acting Distant And Is Giving Me The Cold Shoulder

Published: August 10, 2021 | Last Updated: January 24, 2023 By | 32 Replies Continue Reading
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If a friend is acting distant, giving you the cold shoulder, and you care about the friendship, it makes sense to find out what’s going on.


Hi Irene,

I have a long history with unsuccessful friendships, sometimes by my choice but usually, the decision is theirs. This has been a great source of pain for me and my usual response is to do nothing.

Currently, the woman whom I consider my only close friend has been acting distant and avoiding me. We haven’t gotten together in two months and have texted each other just a few times. The last few times we did get together she invited her neighbor/friend to come along with us.

I’m wondering if I should say something to her or just let it go. It would be very scary for me to ask her but she really is the only friend I have so I know I have nothing to lose. If I should say something, what would it be?

I find myself feeling a bit angry as I can’t think of what I’ve done but I’ve got to say at one time or another in our eighteen-year friendship, I have probably been or done all of the things mentioned in other posts: been negative, talk too much, been needy/have too many problems, etc. so I do understand if she wants to be done. I really miss having someone to talk to.

Signed, Bree


Hi Bree,

If you have a history of “unsuccessful friendships” and have only one close friend whom you have known for 18 years, you need to give this friend—and yourself—the benefit of the doubt that this friendship is worth saving. If she’s upset, hopefully, it’s something that has happened fairly recently rather than her accumulating a bunch of old hurts.

Yes, having a gut feeling that your friend is avoiding getting together and having her invite another person when you finally do may suggest she wants some distance from your friendship.

Yes, it is scary to ask why she’s acting distant when there is a good chance she’ll have something negative to say about you. But remember, nobody is perfect. And, would you want to lose this friendship without knowing why?

Try to let go of the anger, which is more likely to be your feelings of disappointment, and tell her that you miss her friendship. Ask her directly if you have done anything to upset her because if you did, it certainly wasn’t intentional.

There are three possibilities:

1) She may have other things going on that have nothing to do with you, and may not realize she has been distant.

2) She may be upset with something that occurred between you, and it might be something that you could change or adjust to preserve the relationship.

3) She may want to end the friendship.

Given the possibilities, it seems to me that saying something is better than saying nothing and letting the friendship escape from you.

Hope this helps!

Best, Irene

Updated 8/21

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Category: Communication, KEEPING FRIENDS

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Sites That Link to this Post

  1. I Won't Ask You Why You're Separated Or Your Baby Died | mohanalakshmi.com | September 16, 2013
  2. A Friend | davidwilliams18 | August 28, 2013
  1. Nora Lynne says:

    I agree with Dr. Irene. It’s probable that your friend is going through a rough time, something personal that she’s not yet ready to share. But because this is a friendship you’ve kept for a long time, it would be worth asking directly if there’s something that (a) you could help her with or (b) something you’ve said or done to hurt or offend her without knowing it. Because 18 years is a long time, and the friendship deserves it.

    It’s also worth asking yourself if you’ve been attentive to your friend, and if you’ve paid attention to her when she needed it. Sometimes, we get so busy that it’s easy to get caught up in ourselves. We might forget to look outside ourselves and check in with our loved ones. Sometimes it’s easy to forget to give as much as we take. Just a thought.

  2. Nour says:

    So, I have this best friend that few days ago she was acting happy and like she usually acts but, the next day she was acting quite and weird and she didn’t want to hang out in break time she told me she had to go see her sister (big sister) and I was like “okay” but, her sister wasn’t there so she sat with me, and she was really quite reading her book and usually she is very hyper and happy. But, the second break she was acting like sort of like she usually acts. So when the break ended she was like “do you wanna come help me get some boxes with Ellie” I was like “sure”. The last period she was like “I’m not going to wait for Ellie if we are going to get the boxes we are going to get them now” so then I was like “okay let’s just wait few minutes maybe Ellie will be done with her work”. So after that we waited for like about 3-6 minutes and the teacher called me and Ellie cause she have project to do together and my best friend didn’t know about it so then my best friend called me and she was like “what are you doing” and I told “the project” and I sort of could see it from her face she seemed a bit sad. So after, she went to the teacher and got two other friends and said “teacher can we go get some boxes with them (the two friends)” and the teacher was like “okay but only two can go” and I was calling her name like a dozen times she would hear me but not answer me after when she came back she was like to me “there were no boxes” and I ignored her because I just didn’t feel good at that time. The next day she completely acted weird I hugged her and asked her “how are you?” She was like ” I’m fine” and went to get her books for the next period. Then, in break time we always sit together like everyday. But, she went to her sister and didn’t say anything to me she just left slowly and I was like “um are you going to your sister?” She was like “yeah, you can stay with them (my other friends)” I was like “okay, bye” and she was like “bye”. And she acts with everyone so happy and she’s laughing with them (our classmates) and she was like Snapchating them and laughing with them. And we had a quiz, so after the quiz I went up to her and I was like “can I talk to you?” And she was like “yeah, sure” and I was like “do you wanna still be my best friend or no? because I feel you don’t want to” and she’s like “yeah, I do” and I was like “oh” and she’s like “you don’t want to?” And I’m like “what no, of course I do your the only person I trusted and trust my hole life and your the best” and she was like ” yeah, me to (and smiled)” then she left and still acted weird. When school was about to end I went up to her and was like “will we meet that place we always talk?” And she was like “what place?” And I was like the place we always meet and talk at the end of the day and I was like I’ll show you” and she didn’t reply after I was calling her and she wouldn’t answer so we both walked the same way next to each other and didn’t say anything we didn’t talk until we reached that place which was few seconds away from our classroom so we reached then, I was like “I feel that your ignoring me and whenever I call your name you just ignore me” and she was like “if I was ignoring you I would be talking to your right now.” I was like “oh, okay” and she smiled and was like “whenever you want to tell me something come and tap me” I’m like “okay” and I was like “so what are you doing tomorrow?” and she was like “What I told you about the boxes” and I was like “oh okay cool” and it was really awkward it looked like she didn’t want to talk to me or anything so the she said ” what are you doing and I was like “the thing I said in class to the teacher about the flowers with Ellie” and she was like “k cool”. So then we hugged each other and she left. And yesterday I texted her good morning she didn’t reply or saw it but it delivered but she was talking in the group like a lot. I REALLY NEED HELP OR ADVICE I DON’T WANT TO LOSE OUR FRIENDSHIP.

  3. Ami says:

    So i have this friend, and she says I am her “best friend” but I’m not so sure now… We became really good friends over the summer and hung out almost everyday. When school started, and we would meet other people from our friend group who we hang out with at school. The thing is I don’t have any classes with her and she has classes more with people from our friend group. At school, she wouldn’t talk to me at all when we’re all hanging out with the group but when it’s just the two of us and everyone left is when she would start to actually talk to me. Other than that her focus is always on someone else in our group. She says i am her best friend but I’m not so sure. We live right next door so we used to walk home everyday together. But when we walked home she would become quiet and not say anything unless I spoke first. Her replies were also very vague most of the time and it seems as if her energy from hanging out with our group has been drained when it just the two of us walking home. After school we used to go to each others houses everyday and the only time where I actually felt that she liked me as a friend was when we hung at each others houses but this was sometimes. Most of the time her energy has drained and she doesn’t really bother to talk much . I then brought up the topic saying that she didn’t talk at all when we would walk home and she seemed less energetic and enthusiastic than when we were with the group and I said if it was because she felt that her energy of acting happy all the time was drained by everyone. (She has slight depression and serious family problems with no father drama and divorce ) she then said that it was true , she felt tired acting happy all the time and i believed her. But after a while i doubted it. I couldn’t tell which was her real personality. Her extroverted loud enthusiastic self or her quite calm side. I didn’t know if she was quiet with me because she doesn’t relaly like me as a friend and she treasures our friends from our group more. Frustrated and confused I then told her how i felt and i asked her if she didn’t enjoy my company being with her. I kind of pushed her away i said not to walk with me because we don’t even talk to each other when we walk together anyways. It was awkward because we go home the same direction. Then I told her to not act fake with me and say that im your best friend when im really not. Then we both decided that we needed space from each other for a bit. And now she still does the same things as the before . Acting bored and less enthusiastic with me than with her friends. Not talking to me unless its just us. Her mom finally was able to get a car and I would carpool a lot with them when the weather is bad to walk home. Now, she doesn’t ask for me to come over to hang out with her and if she does she says ” do you want to come over ? ” i would say “are you sure im not going to be a bother to u? Ik sometimes you ask just out of being polite ” she says ” no your my friend i like hanging out with you are u coming or not i dont care if you dont or you do whatever you choose.” Im like okay,, and when we do hang out it seems kind of like we’re both avoinding our problems and acting like our friendship is fine and nothing changed. I even once saw her with another friend of her walking home and i was there walking home the same time as them because we live the road home and i was like hi when i saw her she said hi then kept walking on and ignored me becuase she was walking with her other friend. Then I saw the two of them go up a road to the directiion of a different complex. i then went to the sweets shop across where i live because i was craving chocolate and was on my period and needed junk food and after i bought it i started heading back to my house then to my surprise they both made a turn and went back to the direction of my friend’s house. It was like they turned a different direction to avoid being found out by me that they were hanging out. I don’t know is this wat friends do? I never really had any real friends i have a big group and im friends with them but not. I get left out a lot. Until my current situation friend lent a hand and really became friends with me during the summer but now im not so sure . Is this what friends do? Not talk to me when were with the whole group, say i am her best friend , say that her being less enthusiastic and energetic when its just the two of us,(sayin her excuse is becuase her energy is drained from acting happy and fake talking to our friend group when she actually is kind of sad) only talking to me when its just the two of us, is she pitying me ? She did say once ” yea thats sad u dont talk to anyone ” i do tak to ppl i am socialable on an acquaintance level but i guess i never really connected with anyone except for her. Now we don’t hang out as much as we used to. Help what should i do? I haven’t made any moves to her like asking to hang out because im scared that she thinks im annoying and clingy. What should i do ? Should i tell her that we grew distant ? When i told her how i felt last time saying she doesnt talk much with me and not to walk home with me was when we really grew distant. Should i make an effort to be friends with her ? Or should i wait to see if she will come to me if she really wanted to stay friends with each other. We act like nothing is wrong and idk what to do anymore. I should have never told her to not walk with me anymore because she would not talk to me ishoukd have never told her how i felt about her saying she is my best friend but i doubted that and she is the center of our group and has so many other friends who admire her. While I am the least important in our group. She has sm going for her, i barely get noticed and always have to reach out in order to be. I want to go back to being good friends with her . Our summer together was really nice but now i walk alone having nostalgia whenevrr i pass by places we used to go t o everyday. Also when we txt even though she txts first. Her replies are very vague with just one word replies idk her point idk why she says i am her best friend when im really not. Idk if she is less enthusiastic with me because she doesn’t like me to much or is it because her energy is acually drained and since im so “close” with her she can act more like herself tbh idk her real self idk if shes lying to avoid hurting my feelings help..

  4. Kenzie and Paul says:

    We have a friend that have grown distant in the past few months when she just recently gotten close with a guy she adores. Both of us are moving away and it is not helping that she is growing distant but we love her so much and don’t want this to happen. HELP US PLEASE, WHAT CAN WE DO TO FIX THIS?!?!?!?!?!?! :'(

  5. Jack says:

    Man, does this sound familiar. Been there. Done that. I lost a close friend some time ago. I really don’t know why. But, she is DONE with me. She didn’t just end the friendship, but she nuked it, busted up the glass, salted the earth around it, and plowed the salt six feet deep. In racking my brain, trying to come up with something, I thought of one possibility. Some years ago, we did get into a heated argument. However, we DID patch that up and move forward. So, I can’t imagine that an old fight we had could have been what made her shun me. Or could it? Maybe the friendship just never recovered from that fight? Perhaps there are still lingering effects from it. Who knows? At any rate, I just WISH she would have told me something. Anything. Lord knows, I begged and begged and begged her to tell me what it was. She never did. That silence is a killer. Oh well. Not a thing to be done, other than for me to remember her fondly and not focus on the way the friendship ended. But, I will say this. Avoid arguments with friends. Take a dive. Take the fault if you have to. But AVOID the argument at all costs. Fights with friends are fatal to the friendship! Say that really fast five times, LOL!

  6. Leo says:

    It is once said that friendship isn’t about who you have known the longest. It’s about who walked into your life and “said” I’m here for you, then proved it. I have a friend that we’ve known each other now for for 2 months. I never had it in mind to be her friend actually because even before I approached her, I had this deep connection between us. Then after some time, we got connected finally and started talking, I tried asking her on a date with me, but she said you would prefer and appreciate if we go out as friends. Then we hanged out, had lots of fun, went to her house cos it was close by. We flirted, talk the whole night, and did a lot of things that friends really do. She told me she never liked someone as she did with me, and she never feel comfortable with anyone as she did with me. And she never trust someone at first as she did with me. She is very caring as a person, so fun to be with. She always love to hang out with me. We go to the gym together, we cuddle, we encourage ourselves. But then she sees me as her little “bro” . I felt something really strong and different for her, but she told me Leo, I don’t want relationship with you, I just want friendship with you. But still then she understood I felt something strong for. We use to write everyday, she’s never tired, I’m never tired as well writing her. I’m always there for her when ever she needs a shoulder to lean on as a friend even when I knew I felt much than just being her best friend. She told me she would like us to talk if it’s okay by me, I said it was cool, then we hanged out some couple of weeks ago. Then I already made up my mind to tell her everything instead of letting it hurt inside me. We talked a lot, then I told her everything that faithful day. I really care about her, I like her, I love her, and I would like us to take our friendship to the next level. Then she said, we both want two different things. That she want to be me friend and not in a relationship. Of course I understood, and respect her opinions and I said it’s cool by me. She has always been afraid to hurt me, or get me angry. But I never did get upset. So, she made a promise that she will never leave or change no matter what the life offers. But I could say after since that day, things was strange. We still write and talk as we use to, but I felt something has change a little. We hanged out together some weeks ago, and I got her upset in other words she needed some space. I respected that and gave her some space. But to my kind of person, she is special to me. I can barely ever watch her said or down. Then I had to deliver a flower of apologies to her. Then she wrote me back and said, Leo this is really too much. You shouldn’t have brought me the flower. I don’t want couples with you, I want just friendship with you. Now you make me feel uncomfortable. Then I tried to make her understand I didn’t do it cos of couples, I did it to apologies for making you upset. Ever since then, our glory of being friends have turned to story. She told me she couldn’t tell me bye, cos we’re still friends. The last time we met at the gym, I couldn’t Say to her she has changed. But when I ask, she said she just need distance from everything. That she isn’t feeling comfortable with our situation right now. But before then she asked me a question. “If any of us have a lover outside our friendship, what will you do?” Then I answered and said, I will congratulate yo both. But now, she’s tearing me heart which she knows that. We don’t communicate as we use to. She don’t care anymore to ask about my well being as she use to. I’m just confused, stressed, and boosted. I really don’t know what to do.. she told me she don’t know if I can really take this. That she is strange now. She know I can’t, cos is making my think a lot. She also went on her fb and updated “I’m in a relationship” and also had another guy on her whatsapp profile pic, which they snip in her bed. I still try to be myself, without being moved or touched by any of those things. Cos, I also did promise her I won’t change.. Good people come into your life and they never leave. I know she feels the same way too, hurt, alone. But believe me I don’t know what to do or think right now. I don’t want to losse her.. I need advice please….. thanks

  7. Amanda says:

    I feel like my Best Friend is growing distant from me. It started all of the sudden and I don’t know what I did. I REALLY want her back. I just need advice and some help!!


  8. Preeti says:

    Hi we were in a group of 4 after joining to work. Two two wer clubbed n v wer very close aftr some days my roommate startd using n robbing things which I dint lik I dint say anything fr a year later I fed up wid dat n startd using hers so dat she stops doing so, but I was surprised dat she complain dat to remg 2 without even realizing dat I haven’t tld to dem.she always irritated me purposely. This made me angry n startd hating her n remg 2 startd luking me in different way which made me upset. This continued fr sometimes n I decided to tell same to remg bt dat was too late n so I startd to hate her fr lifetime n I nvr used to talk to her bt she used to talk n dis caused sympathy to her frm remg. Lik this I lost all my Frens they r enjoying together leaving me neither call nor behave friendly lik bfre I’m all alone. This made Me really upset n I agree I hurted roommate a lot fr d thing she made to me. Tell me what shall i do I want to spend time with them lik bfre wat shld I do I’m upset n hurt wen I c dey r close n I’m.alone

  9. Espka says:

    i feel the same with my friend pearl. she doesnt hang with me an when she does she has prissilla with her.

  10. Alexis says:

    I really think the best option is befriending my best friend because everytime I’m with her or around her I feel depressed, guilty, neglected and unwanted. She made me feel like this when she dated my crush (which
    i had for a year )when I confined everything to her ,I thought I could trust her but no she is just not worth it .

  11. BB says:

    A close online friend whom I’ve known for three years has been ignoring me. She no longer emails me or comments on/likes my FB posts though she used to every day. I think it’s because a few weeks ago, I made a remark about the way her dog belches after it eats (she put up a video showing her dogs eating). I told her that the dog has long belches, because it’s eating too fast and taking in too much air, which puts it at high risk for bloat. She was very defensive. I think she took my concern the wrong way and felt that I was insulting her.

    I’ve not tried to fix this or ask her what’s wrong. This is the second time that she has given me the cold shoulder over something trivial. So, to be honest, I wouldn’t mind if the friendship is over. Who needs a punishing friend?

    Recently, I also suffered major health problems and loss. Last year, two family members and two close friends died. She has shown a lack of empathy for these heavy things I’ve been dealing with, offering no support. In addition, she’s a one-upper. Whatever I have going on, she has it worse.

  12. dee says:

    Many people talk bad about a friend that gossip. I must say I dont really get it. You actually CAN talk “shit” about others and never talk shit about the one you talk to. I can so why can´t others? Gossip are also something you can have when you are two close friends. So I dont get it.

  13. Hailey says:

    So like it’s been a few months and I met this girl we had alot in common and we would hang out over the weekend and snapchat each other about anything really that makes us laugh and now all of sudden I noticed our bond is starting to wither i feel like she’s distancing herself from me and like I don’t know i don’t want to sound paranoid but like our conversations are short and sometimes awkward nowadays i try to reconnect with by suggesting to hang out but she says she’s busy would this be a sign she doesn’t want to be my friend?

  14. Ella says:

    Hey Bree,
    Lately my best friend has been acting really strange. Like one day she’d be all over me and talking to me no bother but then the following week she would be giving me the cold shoulder and answering my texts with smart comments. We’ve told each other everything and I am afraid I am going to lose her. She has recently become friendly with a group of “popular” people and always goes out to them and never asks me anywhere? She has also met a guy within that group and has fallen head over heels for him which I am happy about because of course I want her happy. But whenever I go outside to people without telling her she doesn’t talk to me for weeks… And before this summer we had a really big argument and it was her fault and she knows it too but ever since that I can never go back to being the same again… She also doesn’t like my other friends and gets offended when I go out to them and not her??? Well she doesn’t like those friends so why would I ask her to go outside with us???!!! She also only uses me when our other best friend isn’t there:/ And I asked her does she think we all break apart once we head off to college and she said that she hopes we do… So I really do not know what to do:/ Should I just ask her does she want to end the friendship or will I keep trying to mend the friendship?

  15. Courtney says:

    Around April I had talked to my best friend about which college I had finally chose, and came to realize he was shocked that I chose to move away after us going on about it and him being there for me through all the hell my parents put me through for my entire senior year. A week after I had told him my choice, he freaked out on me one day out of the blue about his friends that went to college up there not being my friends and wouldn’t talk to me for three months until my college summer class started that he was also in. During our graduation he tolerated me, but otherwise during those three months I was avoided and treated like I was not there at all. Which, for someone who had been my closest friend and a brother to me- he considered me a sister- this was all very shocking. We’d had smaller spats before but they were misunderstandings that were made up quickly.

    So over the summer we had class together and he gradually warmed back up to me but still kept a hint of not being the same person he once was. Once summer ended he told me multiple times that I wouldn’t have to worry about being forgotten and he’d come visit me just as much as he’d come visit the other friends that I had mentioned he’d go see and just not see me. Which helped a bit cuz I was still anxious about moving to college where I’m at now.

    When I came back from school for a weekend he was super happy to see me and glad I didn’t forget about him. This continued for two more times when I came back. But this time he came up here and hung with the exact friends he thought I’d take away (in January we had a talk about him thinking I’d take those friends away and we had come to an understanding that i had no intention to- these are the same friends he freaked out on me for) and I got invited to hang with them all weekend. I was treated like I was nothing. Like I wasn’t even there. He was a complete asshole to me except a few times where I saw the glimpse of the brother he once was.

    I’m wondering if there would be any way of saving the friendship, as I’ve tried to talk to him before about it over the summer- actually get him to sit and talk about it like we did any other fight- but he always said he was busy… which he was a very busy person… and now it seems like things have somewhat blown over but I’m not entirely sure why it even started. Knowing him for 5yrs and be brother-sister friendship close, I can guess. I know his actions and the way he thinks a lot… he does for me too. We still share that close bond we have when I get glimpses of it. But those are few and far between. We still have a lot of the same things in common…

    I’m thinking it could be that I moved to college after going off about how I planned to stay before my parents forced me to make a decision and I chose the one that wouldn’t get me disowned from my house… thus moved 2hrs away to my other choice i loved equally as much and promised everyone I wouldn’t forget them. I’ve kept that promise and am back in town a lot throughout the September and October for my marching band, which he was also a part of and went to the competitions and hung out with me during some of them those times.

    We still get along well and work together perfectly fine on projects for school or anything else really. But I don’t like the cold-shoudler treatment he’s giving me and purposefully trying to isolate me from his friends. Which, I get he thinks he’ll loose them and his friends show when he’s not around that they don’t think as highly of him as he does them… but we had been through this conversation before about them and he showed clearly he had come to an understanding that I wouldn’t take them away. He also had told me that going away probably would be the best thing for me due to my parents, yet, here we are with me being completely ignored and silent-treatmented while i’m being the same nice person he was always friends with and am actually trying to make an effort to still be friends and have completely forgiven anything he did.

    All of my other friends say I should just drop him and that he isn’t worth my time. He used to be a really loving and kind guy and I still consider him my brother…

    Do you have any advice for possibly saving this friendship? Thank you!

    • Olivia says:

      Yes! I think you need to be really stern and stand up for yourself, saying, “If you want to continue to be my friend you need to treat me well and do X and X.” Don’t soften it saying “I thought we talked about this and understood” or “i always considered you a brother”, etc. Wait and see what he says and does. If he treats you kindly, be loving back and say you always considered him as a brother and whatnot. If not, if he ignores you after that, then he is not worth keeping as a friend and drop him, as all your friends say. But don’t just drop him without standing up for yourself first.

  16. rachel says:

    Hey Brie, I’ve been having some trouble with one of my friends, she has her mood swings one day she would be the perfect best friend then others she’d just treat me like I’m nothing, and some of my other friends have been isolating me and I don’t know how to approch it. Just wondering if u have any advice?

    • rachel says:

      Accidently said brie but if anyone has advice I’d really love to hear it

    • Jamie says:

      I’m no expert but my friend suffers from anxiety and depression (like myself odly enough) and one of the things these cause is mood swings. It can be really hard sometimes, feels like your not loved/important. What I do is I just let it blow over cause you will still have some great times but you will also have bad times. Additionally she might be suffering from a mental illness but don’t try to squeeze any information out just in case, if u want, you should at least slowly ease the topic to mental illness/how she is feeling.

  17. Tara says:

    I am experiencing a sudden shift in what I thought was a friendship. My friend started freezing me out about a month and a half ago. I was talking to her and her boyfriend about a HOA meeting she had missed when I inadvertently mentioned who the new board member was. It was someone who really upset her last year and she flipped her lid. I mean she was PISSED OFF. I tried to calm her down but it was to no avail. Her poor boyfriend became the target of her anger so I excused myself and left. Since then she has had get togethers and had included a friend that she knows was mean to me and caused me a lot of pain. Since she has physically been avoiding me I asked through a text if i had done something wrong and am oblivious to it. If so, I’ll win up to it, apologize and we can move on. Her response was that she has a lot going on. I get that but when you physically see each other you can at least say Hello. I have been by her side through a lot of her drama but I enjoy her. Underneath all her issues is a genuinely good person. I understand people need to back away when they have a lot going on in their life-and she can’t handle a lot of stress. Help me understand what is going on.

    • Ann says:

      It sounds to me like your friend is really immature. Some people are easily offended over every little thing. After a while it is draining to always wonder what you did now to upset them. Your friend just sounds like a “me first” person. I would not bother wasting your time any more. You sent the text and she is still blowing you off. Let it go and find a better friend.

  18. Guest says:

    I am giving a friend a cold shoulder treatment right now because I have been contacted by my family and a friend over her gossiping about me. I knew they weren’t badmouthing her because these are my secrets that only she knows.

    I approached her in a calm manner, I told her that this what I was told and she started being defensive. I told her that there are very telling information that only she knows. She denied it.

    She is the kind who gossips to me about her other friends, despite me showing clear disinterest in their lives.

    Anyhow, I don’t feel safe telling her anything about my life anymore because she makes gossips out of nothing. I don’t even want her to know about small things like me buying this purse because she just makes up the craziest stories.

    So instead of talking to her about this and getting a denial again, I’m just giving her a cold shoulder treatment most of the time. I meet with her in a restaurant- any neutral setting never her house and I definitely don’t let her come to my house. I limit updating her with what’s happening with my life. I don’t even tell her that I go to the gym lol. I just let her talk and share less of myself. Lesser info she knows about me, lesser stories she can make. In fact, lesser times spent with her, the better. Hopefully she gets tired having to initiate asking me out and the 3-5 times a year I see her gets down to Z E R O per year. That’ll be good riddance.

    • Anonymous says:

      Cold shoulder is the way to go. You’re doing yourself a favor by staying away from friends who encourage or foster gossip. I used to have friends who enjoyed gossip and it was a vicious cycle. One day, a friend would talk about me behind my back. Next day, she’d talk behind another friend’s back. Venting and gossiping are two different things though. It got ridiculous to the point where everyone was gossiping about everybody. I cut ties with the clique. I’m glad I’m no longer part of it.

    • Denise says:

      Pretty much what I’d do. So now it seems the interaction has gotten shallow and uninteresting because of everything you cannot say. When someone can’t be trusted with info there’s not much of a friendship.

  19. Denise says:


    Yes, approaching people is scary sometimes. You may get a positive response, a neutral one, a hurtful one, or none. Would you rather get possibly some response by asking? If you do nothing, you may never know anything period and always wonder. Sometimes taking a chance makes you more confident and makes it easier in a future similar situation.

    Whether you decide to wait for a chance to see her in person or send a text, you should mention it’s been texts only between you for awhile and if there’s something you should know. Either way, if there’s no response, a vague one, or hostile one you’ve given her a chance to explain. If she needs time to think or resolve other problems but won’t tell you now, you make get an explanation in the future. Only you can decide if you want to reconnect in the future and spend time with others now.

    Yes, you’re uncomfortable, but try to focus on other positive activities in the meantime.

  20. Amy says:

    Consider for a moment that your premise “she’s been avoiding me” is incorrect.
    Because she is your only friend, you’ve got this relationship under a microscope, that you wouldn’t have if you had a handful of close friends. A few years ago, I hadn’t heard from a close friend and she didn’t answer texts. A few months later, we were having dinner for the first time in almost a year. Turns our her kid was in rehab, her husband was having an affair, she went back to work after being a stay at home mom, and a few other major life upheavals. I would have been there of she needed me, but she needed space that she thanked me for giving her. I’ll bet if she had been my only close friend I would have been so focused on why she hasn’t been in touch, I’d have made incorrect assumptions too.
    Focusing too much on a particular relationship can often distort that.

    If she’s your only friend, yet she has more than one friend, her time is probably more scarce than yours. She might be inviting another person to a) introduce you to a wider circle of friends or b) utilize her spare time seeing two friends at once.
    Not every friend has to be a close one, do you might try making a new acquaintance or two, so you’re less focused on this one friend. Try a book club or volunteering to meet like minded people.

    When resentment builds up and isn’t expressed, it can come out passive-aggressively and can really kill a friendship.

    If you simply can’t refrain yourself from bringing this up with your friend, a simple–I haven’t heard from you in a while, are we okay? — is a good way to touch base without coming across as too needy or that you’ve made assumptions. If you do ask the question, you’ve got to be prepared for her to answer honestly, and not react defensively if in fact, she has some issues with you.

    Good luck.

    • Lalita says:

      I think you made a very valuable point.

    • Georgiagirl says:

      I think you’ve made some great points, Amy. I, too, have been in a situation when I’ve over-scrutinized a friend’s unusual behavior because it was the only significant friendship in my life at the time. It can also be really hard to make sense of behavior when you don’t have other people to talk to or bounce perspectives off. When you’re isolated with your thoughts your perspectives can start warping and misinterpretations happen. Similarly, if your perspectives are never validated then you can begin to self-doubt, which can create a spiral of over-analysis and paranoia. I’ve frankly been there.

      I also think that sometimes people just need space, and that it is important to understand that it isn’t necessarily a reflection of you. People genuinely do get busy. You also may have done something annoying, but not so significant that your friend wants to have a conversation about it. In those instances, sometimes just cooling down is healthy. Forcing conversations can make things awkward.

      Inviting her out but also giving her an out might be telling. Like, “Hey I want to try out this restaurant. I’d love for you to join me, but you seem like you’ve been busy lately. Is going out to eat this week something that you’d be down for?” might be a nice compromise. You are being friendly and invitng, but you are also giving her a chance to say “yeah, I really am just so busy right now…” She might open up. She might not. But you are at least opening a discussion without being confrontational.

      I don’t know if other people think that is good advice, but I think that just saying “what’s going on?” may be intimidating if the person doesn’t want to talk about it, and similarly saying “I feel rejected, did I do something” might make you seem needy or paranoid.

      I also agree with Amy that finding other friends and pouring your energy into things that bring you joy are key.

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