How Friendships Get Ruined In Your Twenties

Ok, honest talk. (Ooh, drama!)

Shouldn't our twenties be the best time of our lives? I mean, we've graduated high school, about to graduate (or have already graduated) from college and we're heading off into life with the job we love. The only things that should be bothering us right now is love and money right? (Okay, huge generalisation I know.) But hey, friendships shouldn't be something that's nagging on our minds, right?!

I guess I'm wrong (lol). 

Recently, I suffered through a breakup with one of my best friends (it was mutual). Our relationship had been going up and down for the past year and I'd tried really hard to fix it, clinging onto whatever that we still had in common. Sadly, it wasn't enough (cue Ariana Grande). Last week, I finally pumped up the courage to lay out the situation with her (yes it was a girl) and tell her that I wasn't feeling comfortable in our friendship anymore. Of course, being the sassy and stubborn b*tches that we are, we began picking at each other and fighting instead. Not good. It ended with us both acknowledging that at least we had a good time together, but it was time to move on. 

But if I was really fine with it, why would I be writing about it now? Frankly, I'm still pissed. And have consequently come up with this list of reasons why friends break up after their teenage glory days. Disclaimer: I get pretty emotional, and the below happens in chronological order.

1. Moving Away

Most teen friendships will probably have to go through this at some point. Your best friend and you move to different cities for college, or perhaps you're stuck at home. Whatever the situation, you guys are separated physically. You can't hang out anymore and the only physical meet-ups will be when it's winter or summer break and everyone goes home to spend time with family. Luckily, there's FaceTime and Skype and Facebook calling so you guys can still stay in touch. 

2. Time Zones

Even with the blessing of modern day technology, you can't force a call to happen if you live in different time zones. London and Hong Kong are separated by 7 hours. Who's going to be the one to get up early or stay up really late? With even a little less than maximum effort and the clock between you two, things just won't work out. 

3. Changing Interests

This is the pivotal point. Good friendships are often built on similar interests and hobbies. If one of you flips the coin while the other stays on the same side, who's going to end up on top? (Not both of you.) Soon, your efforts to keep in touch will become actions of mere acknowledgement of each other's existence. Often it'll start with "hey how's it going" and end with "good". If you're putting in lots of effort, you're probably reminiscing about the past. 

4. New Friends

Coming hand in hand with the above, your best friend will now be on the hunt for new friends that he/she can actually connect with and talk to without the awkward silences. Maybe you'll get a spur of messages about their "amazing day with ______" or "______ is really cool!", but the "I miss you"s and "can't wait to come back"s will become a rarity. You might not realize it at the time and just think they're happily getting settled down in their new environment (internal screaming).

5. Not Replying

Soon, the excitement of telling you about his/her new friends will fade and you'll be back at uncomfortable pauses and the obligatory 'like' on Instagram. If you're still undefeated by the interaction (or lack of) and are texting them like the good old days, unfortunately, you won't get the response you were hoping for. In fact, there will probably be no response. A few days of MIA followed by "I didn't see your text" or "I was too busy sorry" are all part of friendship-breakup process. 

6. Falling in Love (Your Break Up)

Finally, the point of no return hits when they fall in love. Your importance to them will be like that 10 cent coin you accidentally dropped while catching the train but can't be bothered to pick up. I mean, is there anymore explanation needed? Sure, they might come to you for help on that one assignment they didn't understand. They might know you're heading to London Fashion Week and want to "hang out" during the shows. Or they might ask if you know anyone who's hiring an intern for summer and see if you can get them the job. WAKE UP! Take a step back and see what kind of friendship you're in. If it's doing more bad than good, spilling more toxic waste than spreading peace, pissing you off more than making you happy, then IT IS TIME TO ABORT

Ok, rant over. 


If you have similar feelings or would like to share your thoughts, please leave a comment below or tweet at @rheamagazine@brianhkchan

Cover art by Brian HK Chan.


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