How to get Rid of Friends wikihow

Download Article Explore this Article methods 1 Signs It's Time to End a Friendship 2 Telling Your Fri

How to get Rid of Friends wikihow

Download Article Explore this Article methods 1 Signs It's Time to End a Friendship 2 Telling Your Friend Directly 3 Letting a Friendship Fade on Its Own  Other Sections Expert Q&A Tips and Warnings Related Articles References Article Summary      Co-authored by Katie Styzek

Last Updated: April 15, 2022 References Approved

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This article was co-authored by Katie Styzek. Katie Styzek is a Professional School Counselor for Chicago Public Schools. Katie earned a BS in Elementary Education with a Concentration in Mathematics from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. She served as a middle school mathematics, science, and social studies teacher for three years prior to becoming a counselor. She holds a Master of Education (M.Ed.) in School Counseling from DePaul University and an MA in Educational Leadership from Northeastern Illinois University. Katie holds an Illinois School Counselor Endorsement License (Type 73 Service Personnel), an Illinois Principal License (formerly Type 75), and an Illinois Elementary Education Teaching License (Type 03, K  9). She is also Nationally Board Certified in School Counseling from the National Board for Professional Teaching Standards.

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How do you stop being friends with someone in a nice way? Ending a friendship can feel incredibly tough, but sometimes you need to part ways so you can refocus on relationships that bring you joy. Whether you've grown apart or you're just dealing with a toxic or flaky friend, we'll walk you through how to stop being friends with someone. Read on for everything you need to knowfrom the signs it's time to let the friendship go to the kindest ways you can stop talking to your friend.

Steps

Method 1Method 1 of 3:Signs It's Time to End a Friendship

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  • Realize everyone has moments in their lives when their friendship network is shifting. You only have a small amount of time and energy to devote to friendships.
  • Consider whether your friend makes you feel positive or negative about yourself.[1] X Expert Source

Katie Styzek
Professional School Counselor Expert Interview.  28 October 2020.  For example, does your friend always make passive-aggressive comments about your job or appearance? Are you more insecure after conversing with your friend? If so, its probably time to end the friendship.

  • True friends build you up positively, they don't make you doubt yourself.
Image titled Stop Being Friends With Someone Step 2

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  • If your friend has betrayed you or broken your trust, you may need to end the friendship.
  • Sharing confidences and trying to undermine you at work or in a relationship are examples of betrayals that may warrant the ending the friendship. If you're the person doing those things, then you should work on yourself first.
  • If your reasons arent good ones  simple jealousy when the friend didnt do anything to you, comes to mind  maybe you should work on yourself before you end the friendship. [2] X Research source  Advertisement
Image titled Stop Being Friends With Someone Step 3

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  • A toxic friendship is one in which the friend is always talking about negative topics, even if they are things happening to the friend. You should consider whether the negativity is situational. If the friend is just going through a hard time, the friendship might be worth saving. However, if its become a pattern of constant negativity, it might be time for a change  for your own sake. [3] X Research source
  • Researchers have found three kinds of toxic friends: Friends who are too competitive with you, friends who pick fights with you, and friends who cling to you and demand too much of your energy.
  • Before ending a  friendship, ask yourself whether you trust the other person, whether they bring out the best in you (and you in them), and whether you think they care about you and respect you.
Image titled Stop Being Friends With Someone Step 4

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  • Examples of enabling friendships are friendships based around drinking, infidelity, partying, or shopping addiction. If the glue of your friendship is a behavior that you want to change about yourself, you might have to let the friendship go for your own future.
  • Sometimes friendships are created through mutual crisis, such as two friends who unite because they are both having marital problems. If one friend works out the relationship and the other doesnt, the common ground can be gone. Advertisement

Method 2Method 2 of 3:Telling Your Friend Directly

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  • Be very clear. Its important that you provide clarity. However, you dont need to revisit every single past problem or negative detail. But if you arent clear (and firm), the person may keep trying. However, do come prepared with specific reasons. [4] X Research source
  • If the friend has truly done something to warrant the break  or if youve just grown in different directions  they deserve to know, clearly, the reason why. But you should say it in a kind way. Instead of saying, "you are interested in frivolous things while Ive developed an interest in more intellectual pursuits" you could say "as weve gotten older, we just seem to have less in common." In other words, frame it positively.
  • Be honest with the other person  and with yourself. Is there a hidden reason that is really bothering you that even you are avoiding?
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  • Be aware the friend may try to bargain with you and save the relationship. If this is not something youre willing to entertain, stay extremely firm in the conversation.
  • Start your sentences by explaining how you feel rather than castigating the friend for what he or she has done to you. This will make the conversation feel less like an attack to the other person. You could say something like, "I feel like my life has moved in another direction, and this is whats best for me."
  • You dont need to stay around for very long at this meeting. They are either going to get angry probably or try to get you to change your mind. So its best to give them your reasons and make your statement, and then excuse yourself nicely and say you have to go. [5] X Research source
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  • Dont gossip about your former friend after you end the friendship. Your grievances against the friend are no one elses business, and gossip is just not nice.
  • Show some sympathy and patience. Let the friend explain how he or she feels and acknowledge that their feelings are hurt. Explain that you are sorry about causing them bad feelings. This can go a long way.
  • Stay polite when you talk to the person because you never know if you'll want to be friends with them again some day.[6] X Expert Source

Katie Styzek
Professional School Counselor Expert Interview.  28 October 2020.

  • Find a way to allow your friend to preserve his or her dignity. Instead of saying, "I dont want to be your friend," you could say something like, "I cant be the friend you want me to be." This puts more of the responsibility on your own shoulders and will make it easier for the former friend to accept. [7] X Research source
  • Try to avoid assigning blame. Its not really necessary and will make the confrontation worse (unless there was a deep betrayal. Then, its probably a good idea to articulate that). But if your friend just annoys you or you dont find them interesting anymore, why hurt their feelings by saying so?
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  • One of the negatives to the formal method is its uncomfortable and awkward. There are bound to be hard feelings in this meeting, and you will probably dread it.
  • If youve known a friend for a very long time, though, this approach is probably the best. Its basically giving them the courtesy of a formal ending. If the friend is not as close of a friend and youve known them a short time, theres less need to go this route.
  • This approach will end the friendship the most quickly. It provides clarity and is more considerate to your former friend in the long run, even though they may not recognize that at the time.
Image titled Stop Being Friends With Someone Step 9

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  • Calling the friend when they are at work, are going through a crisis, or are in a public situation may not work very well. [8] X Research source
  • A public place, like a restaurant or coffee shop, is probably a better idea. It allows for some airing of grievances but will likely prevent the worst kind of reaction, such as screaming or excessive tears.Advertisement

Method 3Method 3 of 3:Letting a Friendship Fade on Its Own

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Katie Styzek
Professional School Counselor Expert Interview.  28 October 2020.

  • Slowly contact the person less. For example, if you were talking four times a week, reduce it to one time per week. [10] X Research source
  • Sometimes people using the fade out method will keep the person on their social media friend lists, but just contact them less. This is basically a way to downgrade a friendship but avoid dramatic confrontation. [11] X Research source
  • You could suggest a cooling-off period in the hopes that the person will start forging other friendships and start fading away from you when it ends.
  • Dont be available when she (or he) wants to meet. After enough such excuses, the friend may just move on to asking other people to go, naturally reducing the friendship.  [12] X Research source
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  • If the former friend has really done something grievous to you, such as a clear betrayal, you are actually doing something empowering by ending the relationship. You shouldnt feel guilty about standing up for yourself or weeding out negative influences.
  • For example, the people you had things in common with in college might not make the best of friends anymore if your life goes in a different direction from theirs both in terms of family or career.
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  • One benefit of this kind of rejection is that it can minimize angry feelings because  the person being rejected might not realize it, and there is not a showdown with negative words shared. [13] X Research source
  • One negative of this kind of rejection is that it can take a long time and requires a certain dishonesty. Youre not leveling with the person about what youre really doing.
  • If youre extremely close to the friend and have known them for a very long time, the fade out approach may not work. They will perceive the change too dramatically, and they will probably call you out on it.
Image titled Stop Being Friends With Someone Step 13

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  • This method is cruel to the person who used to be your friend. They will spend weeks wondering what they did wrong, and they will probably contact you again to seek answers. Thus, this method of ending a friendship wont cause the other person to stop contact; it will make them try to contact you more.
  • Ghosting removes the possibility of closure for the other person. Its never a good idea to end a friendship by causing hurt in another person. Furthermore, without the possibility of closure, the other person wont feel like the friendship is completely over.
  • Ghosting has been called the "ultimate silent treatment." It is not an honest reckoning of what went wrong in the friendship, which prevents growth in the person whose friend you dont want to be anymore. If the other person has done something to harm your friendship, telling them will allow them to work on those things to better themselves for future friendships. [14] X Research source  Advertisement

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  • Question Is it okay to stop being friends with someone?

Katie Styzek
Professional School Counselor Katie Styzek is a Professional School Counselor for Chicago Public Schools. Katie earned a BS in Elementary Education with a Concentration in Mathematics from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. She served as a middle school mathematics, science, and social studies teacher for three years prior to becoming a counselor. She holds a Master of Education (M.Ed.) in School Counseling from DePaul University and an MA in Educational Leadership from Northeastern Illinois University. Katie holds an Illinois School Counselor Endorsement License (Type 73 Service Personnel), an Illinois Principal License (formerly Type 75), and an Illinois Elementary Education Teaching License (Type 03, K  9). She is also Nationally Board Certified in School Counseling from the National Board for Professional Teaching Standards.

Katie Styzek Professional School Counselor Expert Answer

Support wikiHow by unlocking this expert answer. It is, but stay polite to the person since you never know if you'll want to be friends with them later on. Thanks! Yes No Not Helpful 0 Helpful 3

  • Question How do I get rid of someone that I don't want to be my friend?

Katie Styzek
Professional School Counselor Katie Styzek is a Professional School Counselor for Chicago Public Schools. Katie earned a BS in Elementary Education with a Concentration in Mathematics from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. She served as a middle school mathematics, science, and social studies teacher for three years prior to becoming a counselor. She holds a Master of Education (M.Ed.) in School Counseling from DePaul University and an MA in Educational Leadership from Northeastern Illinois University. Katie holds an Illinois School Counselor Endorsement License (Type 73 Service Personnel), an Illinois Principal License (formerly Type 75), and an Illinois Elementary Education Teaching License (Type 03, K  9). She is also Nationally Board Certified in School Counseling from the National Board for Professional Teaching Standards.

Katie Styzek Professional School Counselor Expert Answer

Support wikiHow by unlocking this expert answer. Slowly distance yourself from that person and ask other people to hang out with you so you can make new friends. Thanks! Yes No Not Helpful 0 Helpful 3

  • Question How do I get rid of a toxic friend that I don't like?

Community Answer Tell him/her how you are feeling and move on, and do not look back. Of course, be polite and fair and don't hold a grudge, but do not let her/him come back into your life if they are causing you pain and grief. Let them know what you feel and have a long discussion about it all, and see if they are willing to move on. Even if they're not, don't let them dull your choice. It is your path, your life. Thanks! Yes No Not Helpful 6 Helpful 46 See more answers Ask a Question 200 characters left Include your email address to get a message when this question is answered. Submit   Advertisement

Tips

  • Be real and genuine with your friends. It will go a long way. Thanks! Helpful 0 Not Helpful 0
  • There may be some hurtful things said on the person's part, but whatever you do, try to stay calm, considerate, and respectful. Don't let them bait you. Thanks! Helpful 0 Not Helpful 0
  • Try not to involve a lot of people in the end of your friendship. This is between you and the friend and doesn't need to involve many other people. Thanks! Helpful 0 Not Helpful 0

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References

  1. Katie Styzek. Professional School Counselor. Expert Interview. 28 October 2020.
  2. http://www.huffingtonpost.com/debra-fine/conscious-relationships_b_4214649.html
  3. http://www.cbsnews.com/news/how-to-spot-and-end-a-toxic-friendship/
  4. http://www.bustle.com/articles/17595-8-ways-to-end-an-unhealthy-friendship-gracefully
  5. http://www.succeedsocially.com/endfriendship
  6. Katie Styzek. Professional School Counselor. Expert Interview. 28 October 2020.
  7. http://www.oprah.com/relationships/How-to-End-a-Friendship-Cutting-off-a-Friend
  8. http://www.bustle.com/articles/17595-8-ways-to-end-an-unhealthy-friendship-gracefully
  9. Katie Styzek. Professional School Counselor. Expert Interview. 28 October 2020.More References (5)
  10. http://www.chatelaine.com/health/sex-and-relationships/how-to-end-a-friendship-six-tips-to-doing-it-gracefully/
  11. http://www.succeedsocially.com/endfriendship
  12. http://www.oprah.com/relationships/How-to-End-a-Friendship-Cutting-off-a-Friend
  13. https://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/happiness-in-world/201308/how-end-friendship
  14. http://www.nytimes.com/2015/06/26/fashion/exes-explain-ghosting-the-ultimate-silent-treatment.html?ref=fashion&target=comments#commentsContainer

About This Article

Co-authored by: Katie Styzek Professional School Counselor This article was co-authored by Katie Styzek. Katie Styzek is a Professional School Counselor for Chicago Public Schools. Katie earned a BS in Elementary Education with a Concentration in Mathematics from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. She served as a middle school mathematics, science, and social studies teacher for three years prior to becoming a counselor. She holds a Master of Education (M.Ed.) in School Counseling from DePaul University and an MA in Educational Leadership from Northeastern Illinois University. Katie holds an Illinois School Counselor Endorsement License (Type 73 Service Personnel), an Illinois Principal License (formerly Type 75), and an Illinois Elementary Education Teaching License (Type 03, K  9). She is also Nationally Board Certified in School Counseling from the National Board for Professional Teaching Standards.  This article has been viewed 169,631 times.   3 votes - 87%   Co-authors:  19 Updated: April 15, 2022 Views:169,631 Categories: Changing and Losing Friends Article SummaryX

If theres someone you dont want to be friends with anymore, its best to have an honest, in-person conversation with them. Before the talk, think about why exactly you want to end the friendship so you can clearly communicate this to them. For example, maybe you have less in common now than you once did. If you're not very close with the friend and have only known them a short time, you can slowly let the friendship fade out by gradually contacting them less and less, and making excuses when they want to hang out. For more advice, including how to recognize whether a friendship is toxic, read on!Did this summary help you?YesNo

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Reader Success Stories

Ashton Vidrine

Jul 1, 2017 "I have a friend who's been my "best friend" since junior high. We both went to different colleges, so it's natural that we'd grow apart over time. Both of us have changed in different ways, and honestly, we don't have much in common anymore. The problem is that I know that they still feel very much attached to me, and feel as if I am still their "best friend". I'm going to use the fading out method. Thanks for noting the pros and cons of different methods. It does help."..." more   Rated this article:  More reader stories Hide reader stories  Share your story

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