• Handling Breakups

In the Media: How to break up with a friend (New York Times)

Published: October 20, 2016 | Last Updated: October 20, 2016 By | 2 Replies Continue Reading


Screenshot (NYT)

Screenshot (NYT)



October 20, 2016

Smarter Living is an ongoing series in the New York Times offering practical advice to help young adults understand the world and make the most of its opportunities and challenges.

As part of this series, reporter Rachel Rabkin Peachman tackled the thorny issue of “How to break up with a friend.” She writes:

Friendships are important throughout life, but especially so in the stage between school and marriage, when our friends often stand in for family. What do you do when you need to end a friendship that’s turned sour?

In writing the piece, Peachman interviewed Dr. Irene S. Levine:

“Think about what you say and how you say it very carefully. It’s likely that your once-friend will never forget those words,” said Irene S. Levine, a psychologist and producer of TheFriendshipBlog.com. Then, talk to your friend in private.

“Don’t involve mutual friends. Remember that although you have been giving a lot of thought to the breakup, it might hit your friend without warning,” Dr. Levine said.

Click here to read the New York Times article in its entirety.

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Comments (2)

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  1. Sandra says:

    Great piece, Irene. I like how the author pointed out that there are different types or levels of friendship. In the case of friends who are more or less “social” or “surface” friends, it’s a lot easier to do a slow fade — especially since there’a not a deep emotional connection. I think those types of friendships tend to drift apart anyway.

    • Irene says:

      Absolutely agree. There are no simple rules when it comes to “how to break up” – depends on the people, the nature of the friendship and the reasons for the breakup.

      Best, Irene

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