What No One Ever Tells You About Walking Away From A Friendship

You’d be surprised how lonely you can feel when you’re surrounded by the people who know you the best. This is how I feel right now. I’ve always enjoyed being on my own, but I am painfully aware of the consequences of being a non-confrontational introvert in college. Instead of starting a fight and getting into drama, I have no problem with simply walking away from it all. It’s cleaner that way… or so I thought.

I’ve always just accepted the fact that I’m a perfectly functional human being on my own and I don’t need to surround myself with others in order to meet social expectations. I’d rather be on my own than have a friend that I can’t trust or a friend who makes me feel inferior.

That’s the price I decided to pay.

Most of the time I don’t feel lonely at all, but sometimes, when I truly see how much I’ve isolated myself, it stings. I don’t miss the toxic friend that I decided to remove from my life, but I miss the people who used to be my friends that aren’t anymore because of that choice. I miss the people who hang around with the friend I’m trying to distance myself from. No one ever warns you about what will happen if you terminate a friendship. I guess you’re supposed to figure that out on your own.

Maybe I was just naive when I thought that if I let go of one person, it would just be that one person.

But it’s not that simple. In reality, you have to accept the fact that you are letting go of so much more. You’re leaving your mutual friends behind as well. They are collateral damage and I wish they weren’t. However, I realize that this is a choice I made on my own accord, so I don’t blame them whatsoever. It’s just a nasty side effect of my own choices.

I’m mourning the loss of friends I never meant to let go.

Basically, I know that my decisions are the reason that I’ve isolated myself from the people I love the most. I wish I could change that because I feel this gaping hole in my chest where my closest friends used to be and that doesn’t feel nice at all. I wish more than anything that this wasn’t the way things happened.

It’s heartbreaking to know that I don’t get to hang out with my old friends on a daily basis– or really ever at all. It’s nauseating to act like we’re strangers to avoid conflict. There are times when I wonder if I made the right choice when I stepped away from a toxic friendship. But I realized that if I can’t be myself around a “friend,” they are not a friend after all. I don’t miss the friend I chose to leave. I know that was for the best. I miss the friends I lost in the process of leaving.

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