Five Things To Keep In Mind While Ending A Toxic Friendship

Five Things To Keep In Mind While Ending A Toxic Friendship

Ending things with a friend may be really difficult but sometimes, you just have to take that leap.

We often read about how one should handle breaking off romantic relationships but never about how one can break off a friendship. It's not like it actually doesn't happen, and when it does, it is even more challenging to handle. Here are some things you can keep in mind while ending a friendship, whatever the circumstances of your decision might be.

Getty Images (Representational Image) | Photo by Fabrice LEROUGE

1) Take a break

Before ending the friendship, take a break from the person to see if it is really what you want. Is the problem you have with the person a temporary one? Can you solve it? Is the problem worth losing a friend? This will ensure that when you decide you don't regret it or remain confused about it. Researcher Arlin Cunic talks about the positives of taking a break from a friendship by explaining that it provides "a fresh perspective on the friendship, a moment to calm down if you are upset, an opportunity to miss your friend if you were spending too much time together and time to reevaluate the friendship."

Getty Images (Representational Image) | Photo by Photo by Rafa Elias

2) Having the Conversation

If you are in a state where you can have a conversation with the person, it is better to ensure that all questions are answered, and by doing so, get closure. In such a situation, it is better to tell them how things will be, which includes you expressing why you can't continue, and letting them tell their side too. After that simply leave. Writer Christina Hope's tips for dealing with such a conversation may prove to be helpful. She advises to find a neutral place to meet and chat, to resist if they want to talk over text, to have a goal in mind, and expect a conversation, to keep remembering to listen, and most important, try of all to be soft on the person and hard on the issue.

Getty Images (Representational Image) | Photo by Klaus Vedfelt

3) End it directly

It is better in such cases to not beat around the bush but to get to the point directly. By clearly stating that you are ending things with the person, you avoid giving the person any hope of reconciliation. This ensures that you don't have to deal with the person once it's over and it ensures that the person now knows that there is no chance of this working out and can move on with their lives.

Getty Images (Representational Image) | Photo by 10'000 Hours

4) Gradual Fade Out

If the friend isn't getting the point through conversation, leaving the situation may seem like the only option left. However, cutting someone off immediately might not be the best option. It will only make them try to contact you even more to get answers. "It only works if it's a two-way dance — if the other person takes the hint and sort of backs off too," says Dr. Andrea Bonior, author of The Friendship Fix, in a telephone interview with Bustle.

Getty Images (Representational Image) | Photo by JGI/Jamie Grill

5) Establish clear boundaries

Often, when dealing with a toxic friendship, the person knows your weak points enough to convince you to take them back. It is better to establish clear boundaries that can be as simple as refusing to continue remaining connected on social media or something more significant such as refusing to remain acquaintances'.

Getty Images (Representational Image) | Photo by skynesher