Break Ups*

First of all, a little business. :)

The lovely Novelista Barista featured one of my posts on her blog today! It has been a long, long time since anything like this has happened, so I’m pretty excited about it. Go check it out if you get a second.  Click HERE.

Also, Neely of A Complete Waste of Makeup is hosting a FABULOUS giveaway! To celebrate the milestone of reaching 300 followers, she’s giving away a $50 gift card to your choice of one of the following places: Target, Starbucks, Sephora, Anthropologie, LuluLemon, or Banana Republic. How amazing is that?! It’s super easy to enter, just click HERE.

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(Courtesy of: http://www.handcraftedcollectibles.com/bestfriends_breakaway_necklaces.jpg)

I’ve been thinking a lot about friendships lately.

As I reread my Girl Friends post and submitted it into the Novelista Barista’s contest, I realized just how much things have changed since I wrote that post.

For starters, I found some. Right here. And they are fabulous. While we’re still all kind of getting to know each other and aren’t quite the call-me-in-the-middle-of-the-night / let’s go get mani – pedis friends yet–I bet that if I tried either they’d be on board. It’s nice to have someone to call to go out for lunch and make plans with, and call when I just need to vent.

But what about people who you used to be able to do that with, but can’t anymore?

Do friends “break-up”?

Over the Christmas holidays I traveled back to the Great White North to visit with my very cute 95 year old Grammy. My sister and I needed to go to the mall one day to pick up a few things, and we always play a game when we’re there. As it’s a small town, and there is really only one mall, we always pick a number of how many people we’ll know when we go shopping. Even though it’s been nearly 10 years since we’ve lived there, it’s inevitable. We always run into old friends from school, work or the community.

Peeah underestimated terribly and saw a whole slew of people that day. My number was 3, and that’s exactly how many I saw.

Key word there being saw.

Walking through the mall I saw three girls in three separate places that I used to know fairly well. I decided to try a little experiment: rather than always being the one to initiate contact when I go home, I decided just to smile at each one and see how they’d react.

The first one didn’t seem to recognize me at all. She just looked away.

The second one smiled back and held a “how do I know her…” expression on her face before continuing on her way.

The third one obviously recognized me. Her eyes caught mine, then she threw an awkward smile my way and actually hurried past me to avoid a conversation.

I wasn’t hurt by it, it just made me think: how exactly do friendships end?

I know that with some people, it’s just a gradual drift apart, largely due to not seeing one another on a regular basis. But I know that’s not always the case, as I’m still friends with lots of people that I haven’t seen in years. We touch base from time to time, but I know I’m a terrible phone person. Yet somehow, when we see each other, it’s more than an awkward glance and a hurried walk away.

I also know that in some cases one person may get offended by something a friend has said or done and chooses to end the friendship. It’s sad, but it happens more often than you’d think. So, would that be considered a break-up?

…but what about when two people stop being friends for no good reason? When it has nothing to do with not seeing each other often enough, or no offense has been committed–when it’s simply because you decide that a person doesn’t really “fit in” with your life anymore?

So you stop returning calls, ignore those little Facebook messages that pop up and pretend you’re away or busy, and forget to let them know about the next social gathering as, well, they probably wouldn’t want to come anyway.

And over time the friendship fizzles until there’s nothing left but a couple of scattered memories and a question: “What happened?”

I know friendships naturally evolve, change and end over time as we change, grow older and move into different phases of our lives.

…but what about those times when the end is not “natural”, but a choice?

Can friends “break-up”?

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