Clareified

Where does the good go

When the BFF just becomes a B

I love this article.

“It’s a myth that friendships last forever,” says Irene S. Levine, a psychologist, professor of psychiatry at New York University’s medical school and author of “Best Friends Forever: Surviving a Breakup with Your Best Friend.” We are tied to our family by blood and our spouses by law, so we are often more attentive to those relationships. “Friendships are relationships of choice, so we tend to overlook them,” she says.

As a result, many friendships die from neglect, Dr. Levine says. And this in itself poses a very sticky problem in friendship breakups: How do you know if you’re being neglected—or dumped? What if your friend is always too busy to get together but always seems to have a good excuse? What if she never calls you, but seems happy enough to hear from you when you call?

And there’s the rub. There are no rules or even societal norms for friendship breakups. Friends who want to split don’t go to counseling or get a mediator or a lawyer, as divorcing couples do. And there typically aren’t a bunch of nosy relatives willing to intervene and relay messages, as there are when a split is within a family.

Also, dissolving a friendship is harder than ever these days, with so many digital ties holding us together, from social-networking Web sites like Facebook to stored numbers in cellphones.

Dave Nadkarni can tell you all about it. When he decided to end a relationship a few years ago with a close female friend he felt was spreading rumors about him, he stopped returning her calls, defriended her on Facebook, blocked her on his instant-message list, stopped following her on Twitter and changed her name in his cellphone to “Do Not Pick Up.” “It was cathartic,” he says.

via Dorian Davis

8 Responses to “When the BFF just becomes a B”

  1. Jennifer Says:

    Wow. This article couldn’t be timelier for me.

  2. Dawn Summers Says:

    The changing the name in your cellphone…CLUTCH!

  3. Anwyn Says:

    I don’t buy the stuff in the first graf about friendships are more easily neglected and overlooked than family. I think just the opposite–you take your family for granted.

  4. Pdov Says:

    I agree with Anwyn to some extent, people do take family for granted since they will always be there and make friends the priority, but in time of crises I think family wins out.

    I remember the first friend break up, back in high school, it was a huge blow. Now having experienced several, okay 2, I’m sad but it’s not mind blowing sad. People change, perceptions differ and you move on. Unfortunetely, very little in life in permanent. Also, I don’t get not explaining the reason for the break up, the first friend who broke up with me was one of those 3 month BFF types and just one day poof, no more interactions. I was out of favor, it least I was able to deduce from her pattern. That was really hard. The other 2 I got speak my mind and so did they, so at least I knew where we stood.

    I’m still blown away about how different the same event can be perceived by 2 people.

  5. Pdov Says:

    Also, I think the person most people prioritize is not the family or the friend but the s.o. Which is actually an okay thing in my book, I hate the whole bros before hos bullshit.

  6. Dawn Says:

    I’m still blown away about how different the same event can be perceived by 2 people.

    YES! I’ve probably had more than my fair share of friend breakups, but it always floors me how two people can experience the same thing, even recite the same facts about them, but come out with totally opposite interpretations!

  7. Dawn Says:

    Oh, but since I’m always right, I’ve learned to chalk that up to “they effing crazy.”

  8. April Says:

    Some people take away a B, some people get out the lava.

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