Have you ever been in a friendship that felt like it was dying? You text your friend to invite her over and she casually ignores your question (for the third time). She texts you back but about something else or she doesn't text you back at all. When you see her, the conversation is awkward and you get the feeling she's in a hurry to end it.
It could be something more substantial. You were friends as single women, but now that one of you is married, the friendship has changed. Or you were friends through your children, but now that your kids are no longer friends, neither are you. Sometimes one friend gets a new hobby that takes up a lot of time.
Then there are more serious circumstances. A friend enters into a pattern of sin and it becomes healthier to distance yourself. Or she starts struggling with depression or a major life change, and pulls away from you.
Friendships die for different reasons. But is there ever a time to say, "I'm done!" or walk away from a friendship?
Even in middle age I ask myself these questions. I never like it when a friendship dies. And stopping one is a hard decision to make, and it's sad.
At the same time, not all friendships continue forever. This is one reason I believe social media is often a burden for us instead of a blessing. Alongside the comparison war, we also struggle with keeping friendships alive that were meant to end. Or we wrestle the pressure to rekindle a friendship that has long passed.
A friend once told me something I've never forgotten. She said, "A friend is a friend for a season, a reason, or a lifetime." I think about that often. It frees me from feeling guilty when a friendship either dies against my will or it's time to step back. It's okay to let a friendship go.
But when should we let friendships go? When is it okay and not okay?
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