When A Friendship Abruptly Ends

In this life, one thing is certain.


The past couple of years I’ve taken some pretty bad losses. I lost my stepdad, who was one of my biggest cheerleaders.

Though his death was completely unexpected, I knew it was final and I could grieve and people would understand that grief comes with a loss that tragic.

Then there’s loss of friendship. I’ve cut ties with several people over the past two years.

Some we just grew apart, or the friendship was irreparably damaged by something flippantly cruel said about a group or cause.

One friend in particular was the loss of my best friend of 20 years.

She held each one of my babies that came after we met. She stood up for me in my presence and out.

We laughed for hours and shared every inside joke you can think of.

We always joked that we were each others’ soulmates, and we would always be the one constant in each others’ lives.

But she didn’t show up when my last baby was born.

She checked in like normal before surgery for my scheduled c-section, and made the promise to be there before my anesthesia wore off – but she wasn’t.

In fact, I haven’t heard from her since that day.

She never showed up.

She never held my son.

She never said goodbye to my older kids that called her aunt.

She just left.

There was no fight.

No where to lay the blame.

She simply decided our friendship didn’t serve her anymore.

Where is the book on grieving a friend that’s still living?

Who is giving out instructions on how to explain how to properly comprehend being ghosted by someone you once considered a sister?

It stung.

She wasn’t there when I needed her most.

The birth of my last son.

The death of my stepdad.

The diagnosis of my mother.

Calls, texts, messages all went unanswered.

I cried. A lot.

But, one thing I have learned is “when someone shows you who they are, believe them the first time.”

I didn’t.

She showed me who she was repeatedly, and I held tighter out of loyalty.

Loyalty needs to be mutual. That’s the hard lesson I’ve learned throughout my life.

If you’re the main person putting in the effort, it’s time to reevaluate.

Grieving a friendship is a part of life that we don’t talk about enough.

I’m not sure what was going on in her life that she felt the need to step away from our long friendship, but I wish her well.

I don’t fault her.

Maybe it was easier for her to just cut ties without looking back.

If something isn’t beneficial to you – you don’t have to stay at the table. It’s ok to eat alone until the company reflects more of who you are.

I no longer reflect what she needed, and she no longer reflects who I’ve grown to be.

While I do wish I had closure, I know that the friendship isn’t for me anymore.

I know should she pop back up, I’d let her know that I’ve filled my table with people who reflect my values and know my worth in their lives.

I hope that if you’re grieving a friendship that you know it’s ok to mourn a friend that is no longer in your life.

Grief is grief.

It’s the most human emotion that we’ve all felt on some level.

Fill your table with those that refill your cup and lend you their spoons when you’re out.

Don’t be afraid to sit alone until the people at the table reflect your heart.

4 thoughts on “When A Friendship Abruptly Ends

  1. This happened to me with a friend of 20 years. She asked me to go on a girls trip with her to Las Vegas. I told her I couldn’t make it because was going through postpartum and didn’t want to ruin the trip. She then ghosted me for 2 years! I was hurt, crying, etc., etc. I reached out to her through calls and text messages. She never responded. However, I didn’t look at it as her revealing her “true” self. I decided that she was acting like this because she was going through something.

    2 years later she called and left me a message that she was in town for work. She sounded chipper and acted like nothing happened. So, I checked her and told her that as my best friend she didn’t have the right to do that to me, to pretend nothing ever happened between us.

    Anyway, I was right, she was going through something and didn’t want to tell me about it. She thought she was under control emotionally. So, when I said I couldn’t meet her in Vegas I (unbeknownst to me) it pushed her over the edge. She felt abandoned and decided not to talk to me.

    Well, my Bestie and I are back and our sisterhood is better than ever.

    If your relationship with your friend is real then fight for it. She’s probably going through something. Text her maybe once a month or a quarter with updates of your children or let her know that you’re thinking of her. Love her from afar. Hopefully she’ll come around. Meanwhile, keep living and loving yourself. 💝

    1. I’m so happy it has worked out for you! I do randomly send updates and it’s always radio silence. But I do still reach out every once in a while. It just doesn’t hurt anymore when she doesn’t reply. We’ve been friends for 20 years as well and it hurt. I know I’ve been used as a scapegoat several times when she’s being untruthful to her spouse. He’s confronted me on it and I of course continued to cover even though I had no idea what he was talking about. That bit has been consistent throughout our friendship. When I was upset I thought about calling him and telling him everything but I couldn’t bring myself to be so mean. If she comes back around I’m not sure how I would react if if I would be very receptive to be honest. This one hurt more than anything. 😞

  2. I’ve known the girl who used to be my best friend since we were younger than we can remember; our parents had their best friend group and there were 5 of us girls who were inseparable and grew up much like cousins in the same town might. Anyway, she was one of my best friends my entire life and we knew everything about one another. She, however, was the only child of her somewhat well-off parents and I was one of three of a single mom who worked in a pizza restaurant so there were some clear socioeconomic differences in growing up which played heavily into the friendship and I didn’t really understand until later in life. We’ve had many fights over the years, some worse than others especially as we got older and I realized how one sided the friendship was in terms of effort put in to maintain it (me being the one forever giving and her only making me important when she needed me but not so much in the reverse.). We still chat every once in a while, like a FaceBook post or two…. but I think once I finally realized, it took years to get over and I fought for it for so long I just couldn’t anymore. The problem is, friends are so hard to come by these days. Once you’re in your 30s where do you even go to make new friends? And everyone has established friendships that you aren’t going to be anyone’s best friend anymore…. so losing your own makes it so much harder. Makes you feel alone (even with the best husband ever, I’m not trying to talk to him about my nails and shit.).

  3. This has happened to me on a number of occasions. The hardest lesson to learn is to be more judicious of who gets a seat at my table because I love openly and fully and almost immediately.

Leave a Reply to Tiffany Sill Cancel reply