Best friends for never.

Do you accept me as your lawful best friend? I don’t. 

Remember when you were five and you had a best friend, your absolute bestest friend in the whole wide world! How long did that last? Did you catch them cheating on you in the playground? You heard her call Jessica her best friend too? Well, I have news for you - Jessica is a bitch. And so was your best friend. 

The best friend term is interesting, on one hand it’s the ultimate friendship goal, and on the other it’s a potential threat of a lifetime commitment. Everyone knows you can break up with a boyfriend but you can’t break up with a best friend.. wait, what? Why not?

I guess without insulting anyone, or any of my past friendships, what I’m trying to say is that we need to no longer hold onto all things toxic in our lives. Why should a friend be able to ignore you, depend on you and play mind games while still having the privilege of holding that title? If you’re in an unhealthy place I want you to know that it doesn’t make you a bad person, you’re allowed to leave, people change. 

Like any relationship people develop and morph into their new found identities and sometimes you just don’t fit their build, or maybe they don’t fit yours. What I’ve found is that people are more likely to hang around in a toxic friendship than they are in a relationship, so why? Why are we shackled to the chains of something that just doesn’t feel good anymore?

I’ve had the long term, the short term and the fun term best friends. And something my great grandfather said, “you can count your true friends on one hand” - too right Grumpy, too bloody right. I’m not saying I’m a friendship guru, I’d say anything but. I have my own values and what I stand for, I used to bend over backwards to please people and with all my heart will try hold something together to the point of break. I was a classic sign on the dotted line, which is all well and good until the divorce.

Like any normal relationship, when the bad times outweigh the good - it’s time to take a step back and look at your friendship from a new perspective. 

Here’s the tell tale signs that you need a break up in your life: 

— You feel drained after hanging out with them.

— You don't like how you act when you're around them.

— You need to psyche yourself up to hang out with them.

— The balance is way off. Either they don't reciprocate your effort or vice versa.

— They make you feel bad about yourself, pressure or guilt-trip you, or you guys fight a ton.

— You just don't like or respect them anymore.

(Bonior and Degges-White)

The process works much the same as a normal break up. You collect your things, give or take your favourite comfy tee, spend time wallowing in a deep dark state of depression until you find the confidence to start again. You’ll meet new people, and move on to stage three - the rebound. The rebound best friend is always fun, exciting but perhaps you can’t see it being sustainable in the future. You have some good times, regain your confidence and naturally, the party always ends and you’ll eventually both go your own separate ways.

To drum another quote into you, my mother always said “friends for a reason, a season and a lifetime.” Something that has always resonated with me, friendships serve a purpose in a time of need, that doesn’t make these friendships any less valuable to you in fact they’re the honeymoons of all honeymoons, you get the good without the sad or the bad.

For a long time I felt guilty for losing friends, it's always easy to remember the good times and feel nostalgic for what once was something great but in reality I've never been so mindfully healthy than I am right now. I have some beautiful friendships that I treasure and adore, and most of the time the beauty is in the lack of maintenance. If you have to try too hard, put yourself out there too often or feel like you can't stray for a few days without the cracks of a break up dawning than you’re in the wrong place. 

At the end of the day your most important relationship is with yourself, be your own best friend. Do you for awhile. Friends come and go, but it’s your relationship with yourself that lasts forever. 

Hannah Jensen