How to Handle It When A Friend Cuts You Off
When A Friend Cuts You Off, It Really Hurts....
I speak from experience when I say that when a friend suddenly cuts you out of his or her life, it can be devastating...
Here, I will share some steps you can take to deal with the heartbreak, forgive, and move on with your life - with or without the friend who hurt you.
Remember, in Your Grieving, Not to Despair
Don't lose hope. Your friend may not be speaking to you right now, but that doesn't mean the friendship will never, ever be re-kindled in the future.
- Try to accept that, for now, your friendship with this person is on hold, for whatever reason.
- Even though it hurts you very deeply, and you have to go through the grieving process, remember that all things are possible with God
- Someday your friendship could very well be restored.
- Have hope and faith, and put it in the Lord's hands as to whether you become friends again in the future.
You Had Some Good Times Together... So Allow Yourself to Grieve
Losing a friend to a broken friendship is kind of like the break-up of a romantic relationship, or even comparable to a death. You have lost someone dear to you. That person who you used to be close with, is no longer in your life, or at least, not at this time. It hurts. Really bad. Knowing this, allow yourself the time you need to grieve the loss of your friend. You have some good memories of this person, and it hurts to remember the special times the two of you shared, but as you look back, try to remember that you gained some valuable lessons from this friendship, and it was a blessing to have this person in your life, even if it was just for a season.
Remember, It Probably Isn't Your Fault
When my friendship of 10+ years with my best friend suddenly became broken, I was heartbroken. We had known each other since high school, and I had always looked up to her. Now, all of a sudden, she had cut me out of her life, without any explanation.
Deleted from Facebook. Not answering my calls or texts. Simply. Gone.
It hurt. I cried and grieved, and I wondered, "What did I do wrong? Did I somehow cause this?"
Through this experience, however, I've learned that even a best friend can have issues or struggles you may not be aware of.
Chances are, if this person is cutting you off out of the blue, after years of being friends, then there is a deeper problem that you have not been made privy to. So don't blame yourself. As difficult as it is to stop wracking your brain, thinking of what you could have done to prevent this moment, it is happening, and there's (most likely) nothing you did to cause it. It is something going on with your friend, and you have nothing to do with it at all, so don't punish yourself.
Reach Out One More Time, Then Let It Go
If you have tried to reach out to your friend multiple times, without getting a response back, it may be time to accept it and move on. But maybe you could just reach out one more time.
When my best friend announced that she could no longer speak to me after 10+ years of friendship, I tried calling her and texting her right away, with no response. I left her a voicemail, but heard nothing back from her. I saw that she had deleted me on Facebook, which really hurt. I emailed her, but never got a response.
I let some time pass, for both of our sakes. After a few weeks without speaking, I decided to reach out to my friend one more time. I sent a hand-written card to her, explaining how much her friendship meant to me and how hurt I was over what had transpired. I told her I would always wish the best for her and her family. At this time, I did not hear anything back... But that's not the end of the story.
Pray for Your Friend
Pray for your friend. I know it sounds crazy. This person, who was one of your best friends, confidants, and allies, has hurt you deeply and profoundly. So it does seem counter-intuitive to pray for them. But try it. Pray God will bless this person, and help them to overcome what trial or hardship is going on in their life at this moment.
Pray for healing for your friend, and for restoration of the friendship, if it is God's will. As long as you are burdened by the broken friendship, continue to pray about it, giving it over to the Lord. Pray that the person will make contact with you, and restore the relationship, if possible. But most of all, pray for the person to be healed, comforted, encouraged, blessed, and be made right with the Lord.
Forgive Your Friend
This goes along with praying for your friend, because as you pray for him/her, your heart will become softer and more open to forgiving. As difficult as it is to forgive this person who hurt you so much, it's necessary. Not only does God command us to forgive others as He has forgiven us, but it also releases the forgiver from the bondage of holding onto bitterness and unforgiveness, which can be debilitating if not dealt with.
So, forgive that person, not because they deserve it, but because God calls us to and because you will destroy yourself in the process if you hold onto bitterness in your heart.
Easy Ways to Nurture Friendships
- Call a friend. Talk on the phone to get to know them better
- Plan a day to hang out and go to the movies
- Work out with a friend at the gym
- Invite a friend to go swimming
- Ask a friend out to lunch
- Buy a small gift for a friend, to let them know you care
- Write a note or postcard to a friend, so they know you were thinking of them
- Text a friend just to say hi and ask how they are doing
Nurture Other Friendships
It can be very difficult to accept that your friendship has ended, or has been put on hold, with someone who has been very special in your life. You may have spent a lot of time with this person in the past, and now you are probably at a loss as to who to hang out with, who to call when you need a shoulder to cry on, and so on. Perhaps you do have a lot of other friends, but none compared in your heart or mind to this person.
I know the feeling. When my friend cut me out of her life, it wasn't as though I didn't have any other friends. I actually had a substantial group of friends from college who I was really close to, and I wasn't even living in the same area as my friend anymore. I would visit her every few months when I came home to see my brothers and my parents, and we would always have great talks and good times together. I'd call her on the phone (or she would call me) at least once a week to catch up. I considered her one of my best, oldest, and dearest friends, so it came as quite a shock to suddenly be cut out of her life.
Something I learned through this experience, however, is that friendships often exist in our lives for a certain season of time. Sure, there are some friends who you can hang out with after not seeing for two years, and it will be like you never went a day without speaking. But I believe some friends are in our lives for a certain season only, and that's also OK. Through this, I learned to nurture the other friendships that I had, and I became much closer with other friends who live closeby, who I have more in common with now anyway.
My Story's Conclusion
After about 6 months of not speaking, and much prayer, continually surrendering the situation to the Lord, I had pretty much given up on ever hearing from my friend again.
However, she finally contacted me one day, completely out of the blue. She e-mailed to let me know that she had gotten my card in the mail, which I had sent all those months back. She said she had been busy and that the real reason she had not contacted me in so long was because of some issues in her life that she had not been able to tell me in all the years we had been friends. The issues were deep-seated and genuinely had nothing to do with me. I was totally shocked that in all our years of friendship, she had never shared any of this with me. She said that due to the issues (which I won't divulge here for sake of privacy), we could be in contact but our friendship would most likely never be the same, since she was going to need to get professional help for her problems.
Since then, we have emailed back and forth a few times, but things are not like they used to be. I've learned not to put people onto pedestals, as we are all human beings and we all have certain struggles and trials in our lives that we must deal with. I have moved on, and I now continue to nurture the friendships that are most dear and treasured in my life right now. While I forgive her and wish her well, I no longer look to that friendship to provide the fulfillment in my life that it once did.
Ultimately, we must look to God above anyone else in our lives, and realize that God will be a closer friend to us than any person on this earth! Someday, perhaps my friendship with this individual will be restored to what it once was, but I leave that in God's hands, to do what He pleases, according to His will.
I hope that sharing my story and advice helps anyone who is hurting over a broken friendship. Blessings to you!