Feeling like you don’t know where you stand anymore in a particular friendship is an incredibly tough place to be where at times it feels like being on an emotional roller coaster.
You can often feel let down, hurt, lonely or worse – blame yourself for the way things are with your friend currently.
Not knowing if you should let go of a friendship that was built over years is not an easy decision to make but acting rash could potentially lose a friendship that was never meant to end just yet.
Alternatively, putting all your effort into saving a friendship that is one-sided, toxic, and all-round bad is just as worrisome.
However, there are many things to take into account while weighing the pros and cons to know if a friendship is worth saving or not but I’ve made it a little simpler for you by breaking down everything you must know to make that tough decision.
Ways To Know If A Friendship Is Worth Saving
The Friendship Isn’t One-Sided
Are you constantly reaching out or making an effort to talk to your friend? Are you always the one who’s making plans or interested in knowing what’s been going on in that other person’s life?
When you do contact them, are they abrupt, listen half-heartedly, ignore you for long periods of time, delayed messages, constant excuses that don’t match their online behavior?
If the answer is yes to most of these questions, unfortunately, your friendship with this person may be one-sided. If you’re the one who is making the majority of the effort without a proper response from that person, I think the answer is quite clear.
True friendship is one where both individuals put in the effort to make a friendship work.
If you feel like that friend hasn’t been following through with their promise, making excuses to not meet up, or hiding behind the fact that they just don’t have time even if you do see the posting on social media having fun, the friendship might not be worth saving at this point.
It’s difficult to say what the reasons are for them not wanting to put in the effort but being in a friendship that is one-sided will only make you feel bad.
They’ve Always Been There For You
A friend who is always there in your best or worse problems and is known to be highly dependable, it’s worth putting up with whatever problems you have with them at the moment.
This is in the case where even if you guys aren’t on great terms right now, if the opportunity or situation calls for when you need this person in your life, you’ll find that they’ll immediately be there for you (if they can) and willing to put the problems aside.
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This type of friend who has proven to be loyal over the years and continues to do so even with all you guy’s issues is a great way to know if a friendship that is worth saving.
It’s difficult to come across a friend like this and if you are lucky enough to find a friend like this, you might want to keep them around if they do want to stay.
They Could Be Preoccupied Right Now
There’s one thing to take into account before jumping to any conclusion if your friend has been acting strangely towards you for a while now or canceling on you continuously.
It could very well be that they are truly preoccupied with things that are going on in their life. Yes, every friendship will experience a change over time and so does life.
As you grow older, the responsibilities of life keep piling on and they may not have the time as they used to before.
The best thing you could do in the situation is to talk to your friend and tell them that you’ve missed them and find out what’s been going on.
They may not even realize how distant they’ve been and this could resolve the issues you have.
However, if a friend lies to you and doesn’t follow through on their promise of eventually catching up or keeps making excuses, it might prove to be very difficult to save this friendship if that person no longer wants to be in it.
They’ve Never Lied To You Before
Similar to how a friend who is always there for you when you need them, having a friend who is always honest can be incredibly freeing.
You know you can trust this person with all your dark secrets and over the years they have never broken your trust.
If you have a friend like this, then it’s the best way to know if a friendship is worth saving.
However, if this friend is known to tell lies and is generally someone you can’t trust or depend on, then putting all this effort into saving a friendship like this will be fruitless over time.
At some point, they’re going to disappoint you no matter how much you try to make it work with them.
They Aren’t Users
Fake friends can be slightly difficult to spot but you will find a few around you.
These friends will generally only know you when they need something but when you no longer have anything to offer, they don’t feel like it’s worth their time anymore.
If you try to save a friendship with a person who only uses you and never gives back, this will only make you feel worse about yourself and feel generally miserable when you’re continuously hurt by this person over and over again.
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The only time worth saving a friendship is when both of you have been there for each other and have done things to a similar extent.
You never feel like this friend is using you for some purpose but rather you feel confident that you can depend on this person as well if ever you need something without them making you feel bad or guilty.
They Make An Effort To Talk When You Reach Out
Another way to know if a friendship is worth saving is when you and your friend have been distant for a while but you make that first attempt to reach out and it’s received in a positive manner, then there may still be some hope of saving this friendship.
If you find that they also make an attempt to reach out to you and follow through on their plans of hanging out or simply talking sometimes without you having to do all the work, then it’s definitely a positive sign.
However, if all your attempts at trying to talk to this person are only received by a cold shoulder, you might want to rethink things.
If their replies to your messages are short and cold or if they take days to reply to your texts for months, you do have to decide if it’s worth saving this friendship.
No matter how much effort you put in, it doesn’t matter if that person isn’t willing to be friends anymore.
Determine What This Friendship Means To You
In the case where you have been hurt in some way by this friend and conflicted as to whether to end this friendship or not, then it will be a good idea to weigh the pros and cons of this friendship and determine the value of the friendship.
You might want to ask yourself these questions to determine if saving this friendship is worth it:
- Will losing this person be better for you?
- What importance does this friend hold?
- Does this friend uplift you or tear you down?
- Can your problems be easily resolved?
- Will your life be better without this person?
By figuring out why you enjoy this person’s company or what makes your friendship special including why you really like being friends with this person, and what you may lose if you end everything, then only you may find a solution to your questions.
Make A Decision
Once you have determined all the answers, you might want to come up with an action plan. Are you willing to save this friendship or let it go? If so, what can you do to save the friendship?
Once you have the decision you need to make, try to stick with it. Don’t cave and hold onto a friendship that is only toxic or hurtful to you.
If you feel like the entire friendship is one-sided, it won’t last long no matter how much effort you put into trying to save it.
If the other person has no willingness to save the friendship either, then there might not be any hope.
At the end of the day, the decision is in your hands and only you know what is best for you regardless of what others say or think.
One final thing: you have to be willing to accept and let go IF the friendship can’t be saved.
If you know that you’ve done your best and tried everything you could to save the friendship yet things simply could not work, then it’s meant to happen.
Everything happens for a reason and only a while from now will you understand why the friendship ended or whether it was actually worth saving this friendship.