Beyond Blue

Beyond Blue

Video: When a Friendship Ends

This video was produced awhile back, when I was letting go of an important friendship. But I seem to always struggle with friendship … boundaries and so forth. I think friendships are just as complicated as romantic relationships. Especially when they end. How do you know when to end one that’s not good for you? Here’s what I think.


To view my YouTube video click here.

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  • Lorna

    I have had a couple of friendships end in recent years. None of which I necessarily wanted to end. I know that I am very bad at setting boundaries. I know that oftentimes, I listened to complaints/whingeing about other co-workers or acquaintances that I really wasn’t interested in hearing. I let them “vent” their grievances because they needed to get them off their chest and this is always important. Not denying that I did the same thing. Unfortunately, particularly with one friend, this became the weekly ritual. To the point where I felt that I was purely the end-of week venting mechanism. It deflated me to the point where I couldn’t feel that I could bring any joy/laughter to this relationship. Nevertheless, it was the other party who brought the relationship to a close…. and yet I still miss this friend! Go figure!!
    With another friend, I was too self-conscious. I was always the miserable one. The one who was so unsure of herself, she felt she couldn’t be herself!! If only time was kind enough to allow us a “do-over”. If only we could be where we wanted to be at the time we needed to be it!!!
    I have had toxic people in my life, and at times I have been the toxic one!! If only the pH had been right at the time.
    If only a second chance was a right and not a wish !!!
    Here’s to a better tomorrow.

  • Angelika

    Could you please provide the text version also?

  • Your Name

    This video post on friendship really hit home. I’ve had a lot of shame about having girlfriendships blow up. Now I can see that they were unequal, unhealthy, toxic, and needed to end, just as many dating relationships ran their course in my single years.
    I now have a motto, reverse paraphrasing Gloria Steinem: I no longer accept behavior from a woman that I wouldn’t tolerate in a man.
    The bottom line is, in any relationship — is there mutual respect? Attention to boundaries? If a person is relentlessly negative and leaves you deflated after every contact — that’s not a friend.
    I do think women, in particular, can be guilty of using their friends as complaint-receptacles — they often assume intimacy without realizing it has to be earned, just as in a dating relationship.
    I no longer feel bad about letting rotten relationships go.

  • Chrissy

    Yes, I have just ended a friendship and I was feeling sad about the breakup. Now I’m confused that if I made the right choice!

  • Heather

    Why would you post a link for a video that is no longer available???

  • Your Name

    I’ve had a couple of close friendships that ended because they needed to end. While there were many aspects about the friendships that I enjoyed, and considered myself blessed to have, unfortunately the bad outweighed the good. One of them was a girlfriend I admired because of her perseverance, especially with her education. But, she was very self-centered, not in a conceded way, but it was difficult for her to feel much compassion for others and she really felt like she came first in all situations. It became too draining for me as she was single and I was married with children. I could no longer keep the friendship because her needs and demands interfered with the time I needed for my own family. The other, sadly, was my sister. She has a lot of past hurts due to the death of our mother and resentment towards my dad for what he can’t be for her, and she often blew up at me because I didn’t feel the same way about him. She’s my sister and I’ll always love and support her, but I can no longer have a ‘friendship’ whereby we talk everyday because of what she does to my blood pressure. Too bad, but I’m more at peace and able to go on happily with my life.

  • Your Name

    I have just lost my best friend that I have had for over eight years. The last three months I felt like I have been in mourning. Some days are harder than others. She was everything to me. I admit that there were times that I didnt treat her the way she needed to be treated. I admit there were times where I wasnt the best friend to her as she was to me, I am in therapy for that now. I apologied to her for all the negative that I have done in the past and asked her to stay and let me make it up to her, but she left anyway. It really hurt. And now I am left to find my own way. It’s hard letting go of my best friend. It really is. It’s the worst “Breakup” I think I have ever had in my life. I wish she would come back and be my best friend again. But I know she’s gone and she wont be back and that’s so hard for me to wrap my head around…and I can’t figure out why.

  • Patricia R

    I went to view this and it says no longer available. Please, please, please post it again!!!!

  • grace

    Could you please share the title and author of the book from which you read the excerpt? I’ve played it a few times and can’t make it out completely on the video. Sounds like a valuable tool for life, not just breakups. Thanks so much.

  • Therese Borchard

    Here is the quote. From Anne Morrow Lindbergh’s “Gift from the Sea”:
    “I shall ask into my shell only those friends with whom I can be completely honest. I find I am shedding hypocrisy in human relationships. What a rest that will be. The most exhausting thing in life, I have discovered, is being insincere.”

  • Deborah

    This is a fabulous topic and so timely. I lost a best friend and the pain and confusion were hard to bear. But life does go on, and I came to realize during that healing time that the relationship had become toxic for me, but I did not want to admit it. Sometimes something we don’t think we want in our life can bring the great gift of insight.

  • Your Name

    This is a fabulous topic and so timely. I lost a best friend and the pain and confusion were hard to bear. But life does go on, and I came to realize during that healing time that the relationship had become toxic for me, but I did not want to admit it. Sometimes something we don’t think we want in our life can bring the great gift of insight.

  • Alyssa

    This is so true. It’s sad when you find out it’s your family with whom you have toxic relationships with.

  • SuzanneWA

    I find if I can be vulnerable in a friendship, then I KNOW the friendship is worthwhile. Being “insincere” IS a hard thing to be in a mutual relationship. And, breaking up a long-standing friendship can be as hard as anything I’ve ever done before. Just ask yourself; is this “friend” good for me, or toxic. The answer should be easy. If not – then it probably IS toxic.

  • Your Name


  • Your Name

    I had a difficult childhood and grew up with a lot of anger and find it difficult to trust anybody who wants to be my friend. And I hate the feeling of being insincere , most of the time I prefer to be alone with my husband and kids than pretending of enjoying the relationship.I feel I need therapy to dig out the pain . I do know the cause of this unhappy feeling but can’t change it, I’m very sad not being able to open up to people because i know I’m a very loving , giving person,.BUT WHY DO I FEEL THIS WAY ?????????????????

  • Your Name

    Is the message in the video saying that we should end a relationship, thereby abandoning a friend, if they cannot reciprocate fully the love and support we need?

  • http://Video Chris

    Not everyone wants to watch videos. This seems to be a new trend or something. I’d much rather read than watch.

  • Your Name

    I just found out that one of my friends,so I thought, is totally rude and too loud of a person to be around. I been trying to be patient with her but she wants her way ALL the time and if you change the plan she will & does hang up on you when on the phone with her. I am wondering how to handle that???? I really want to just say NO more I am done with this friendship….Am I right or wrong?


    i feel very enlightened by this video.It happens i have not too long now,lost my best friend..No,he did not past.Even though it feels as though he has.We were first loves,since we were teenagers.I was 15 and he was 14,when we first met.The thing about our relationship was,that i was very outgoing,party type,afraid of commitment,and honestly insecure with myself.But i Also steered away from expressing my inner feelings.I felt that a man would play with me and use me,because i was “fine,sexy,gorgeous,too smart” etc.I’ve always been more of a writer,then a person whom can SHOW they “care”,or “love” someone.It took about a year or a little longer befor i finally let down my gaurd all the way and let him LOVE me,and do for me,as i did for him.
    I was abbused and misguided physically,mentally,emotionally,and spiritually.As a child,we are taught obey your parents and respect them.Which i believe is the thing to do,but we must learn from their mistakes.Their bad choices,and ways of thinking that aren’t fully right in this day and age.By the expectations of my family and being middle eastern on top of things,is uh..”difficult” way of living for a lack of a better word. Although i felt the chemistry,or this over powering energy to be with him all day,everyday.I just felt at times we argued and disagreeded more then agreed.Until i finally just reformed into what i thought was me,bt adventually now,AFTER 3years i see was never truely me. You know, they say you are what u “EAt”,and u are the product of your “environment”..This is true,because if u are raised with people u see abbusing drinking,drugs,gambiling,gangbanging,hustling,etc. your most likely to do so. It’s hard to cope with being with a man that is your best friend for about 6year.Where about 2yrs and then the other 4 just were in and out.I believe i was to afraid to admit that i was over him,because i felt i was all he had.Although it may seem that i was his biggest support,i have to realise that i have to put myself first.As much as it hurts,and lord knows it HUrTS!!Love starts with thy self,if u can’t love your self,and be content with you,alone…then how would you ever be content with someone else?and their flaws?…We must be able to identify what we can tollerate and can’t tollerate.What you like about someone,and don’t like.What flaws you can try to look past,and what you just can’t stand period.If you ask these questions and start as a friend first,you’ll be more inclinded to see whether or not you and that one person are “ment to be”.. Ijust suggest to anyone thats wanting love,or looking for it..Be patient,life is full of struggles and trials,but it’s those very difficult things that we go threw that should make us stronger.Should show us the RED FLAGS to what we can and can’t deal with when it comes to a certain man..but just keep in mind,CLOSE MOUTHS DON’T GET FED!!MEANING,IF YOU DON’T VOICE HOW U FEEL,REGARDLESS IF THEY GET MAD OR SCREAM OR SAY THEY HATE U R THEIR GONNA LEAVE U,THEN YOUR JUST LIVING FOR THEM.YOU’LL NEVER BE HAPPY,YOU’LL NEVER BE CONTENT WITH YOURSELF.YOU’LL BE LIVING A LIE AND BE MISERABLE,AND MOST LIKELY DEPRESSED OR SUICIDAL..THINKING THAT SOMETHING IS WRONG WITH YOU,WHEN THERE ISNT.iTS MIND OVER MATTER PEOPLE..SO TAKE CONTROL OR GET LEFT WITH THE DOUBTS AND FEARS CONTROLLING YOUR LIFE.THANK FOR LISTENING..AND I HOPE THIS ENLIGHTENED SOMEONE.GOD BLESS…

  • Bipolar Too

    I agree with you. Friendship is a two way street. But it isn’t always equal. Some give more than others. And we get different things from different people.
    If the relationship is toxic or negative leaving one feeling used and/or abused or taken advantage of it is time to look at it closely. Is this someone with whom I need to be close? Do I need to distance myself or totally walk away? This can be more difficult if we aren’t feeling positive about ourselves.
    Making a decision to end the “relationship” is something you shouldn’t take lightly. We all have bad times in our lives and I believe that if your friend upsets you, you need to discuss it with them. For me – if I can’t be honest with my friend about my feelings – good, bad or indifferent – it isn’t a close and healthy friendship.
    But losing a friend for either positive or negative reasons can be difficult.
    I applaud your work and honesty. Looking forward to your next blog and wishing you continued good health!

  • Dee

    This is a reply to the “Your Name” and the loud friend who hangs up on you if she/he doesn’t get their way.
    I think if they can’t listen without acting like a child, and treat you with the respect you deserve and show common courtesy to you as your friend… then yes, you should call that a toxic person and end your friendship… it doesn’t seem like much of a friendship anyhow if they act like that.
    Just my advice.
    Best wishes.

  • nelly

    I agree with Chris I can’t get the videos half of the time and would like to read the article since I am going thru this right now. You should have both options available.

  • Your Name

    I hope my post didn’t get lost.

  • Your Name

    Thank you for this video. I have over many years lost several “close” friends. It is so true as I look back on our relationships, that I thought I had to be “insincere” at times in order to continue our friendships. At 65, I am scaling down in many areas of my life. As I prepared my large home to put on the market, I took loads of “valued” items to charity shops. Things I had collected, put value on, and held on to. In reality, it has been a relief to not have the clutter to take care of, pamper, protect, and sometimes hide. I had “friends” through the years that also became clutter. And I probably became clutter to them. In disconnecting from the clutter, new adventures and opportunities have opened for me. I am younger!

  • claudia Olivos

    Thanks for this video. I just posted about my year without creating (I am an artist) after a huge betrayal (and break up) with a “best friend”. I wish I would have received support after this break up- that others around me would have understood: it was like a marital betrayal and break up. We had known each other for over 10 years.
    I shall ask into my shell only those with whom I can be honest…
    Thank you!

  • ErikaWindchime

    I am in this emotional experience right now. I love the man he presents to me — he loves me, cares for me, is kind, states he is happy. He passes the “test” of making me feel joyful when around him. But I recently found a message he wrote to his guy friend that revealed his true nature and thus, his hypocrisy. The message included boasting of free rent while living in my home and that our sexual intimacy simply consists of “tossing fish” while he desires an additional woman for his “tantric action seal.” He does not know that I read the message. I am a very compassionate person; that is why I was helping him to save money by having him pay low rent; but he is not saving. Can one be compassionate to a fault? I am learning I must first have compassion for myself. I do not deserve such deceit; this relationship must end. As I hurt, I remind myself I am mourning the loss of the person he presented to me and I believed him to be — not the person he truly is. I thank you for sharing. I have the book “Gift from the Sea” and will hold those wise words in my heart.

  • ray

    watch the videco thank you i am a 62 year old man and fell into a gay relationship with a young man hafe my age. for ten years i let him use me in ever way he could he lie about everthing i no it was wrong to be with him in that life style it was hard to tell him to go. i still feel and mourn for him but dont wont to go back into the lie.and look forward to reading the book Gift from the sea.thank you.

  • Vicki

    What was the name of the book you read from and can I have the quote that you ended with?
    Thank you this was a pretty powerful video!

  • Your Name

    Thank you!!!! Kudos for sharing this – I’m 50 and am just learning that when a friendship ends, I don’t have to blame myself.
    I now have a new motto (it’s actually a Bumper Sticker I found on MySpace) and the basic meaning is:
    “Love those who care about you.
    Forget those who don’t”.

  • Michael

    I was enlightened by Theresa’s comment that some people lack the capacity to reciprocate love appropriately due to wounds that they’ve had to struggle with.
    I was engaged to a 43 yr. old woman who had emotional and physical wounds throughout her life. She suffered from her real father’s early abandonment, sexual abuse from an adopting father and childhood rape from an uncle, and later in life (mid 20’s) she experienced a tramatic brain injury in an auto accident, and she suffered from BiPolar Depression.
    Yet she seemed capable of loving me, unlike any other relationship I’d ever had, she was my first real love. She ended our relationship after behaving unfaithfully (though I never knew for certain that she was unfaithful); she eventually demanded that I leave her apartment. I moved into another state to be with my parents and to try to start over (I’m 52 now).
    It’s been over two years since we broke up, but for about 6-9 months after our breakup she remained in contact with me. I realize that she has “moved on”, but I can’t seem to do that. What I couldn’t understand until I heard Theresa’s comment was why she has refused contact with me.
    How am I expected to “Love those who care about you [and] forget about those who don’t”, when the one person who doesn’t care about me is the very person I want to care more than anyone else? That snappy quote sounds good in principle, but it doesn’t work in real life.

  • sandra weisz

    thank you again Theresa for your wonderful messages and videos. i am the wounded one nobody wants. however i do have a great capacity for love and got myself in a lot of trouble having had a lot of ppl take great advantage of me. i am now living w a man as a friend, however i a m suffering. i don’t like him, and he likes me, and i don’t share his religion or his values. but i have a bed to sleep in instead of being in crummy motels. i ran out of money and he was the only one that would take me in. but i have to have my own place. there is a hierarchy of importance and if one doen’st have the basic necessities of life nothing else matters. it’s all just fluff. pray for me that i find a home. God bless and happy Lent. i will try some of your suggestions.

  • Your Name

    I did fin the video and quote both moving and I can say I both had and unfortunately was as well toxic to others.I have lost at least two female friends I was very close to,though now I am pretty stable I have a personality disorder,possibly borderline and as if that wasn’t enough I am gay though I didn’t act on it until I was on my thirties.I was the bridemaid in England to one of the two friends who is english.What a life!

  • Your Name

    Thanks for the video. I recently ended a friendship in January because I felt like a friend of convience. I could only talk to her when her boyfriend wasn’t available. I had always been there for this person through all of her ups and downs, especially when she was in a relationship. I finally realized that after being overlooked during my birthday,Christmas holiday and her never being there for me, I figured I would find more happiness without her. My other friends told me that it wasn’t my fault that it was her and that she has the problem. I was starting to realize that she was the wounded one. I knew she had low self-esteem when it came to men and I attempted to address this with her but it seemed that with every new relationship it got worse and worse. So I finally after 6 years had to cut the cords and you know what? I’m doing just fine. Thanks again for the video.

  • mary

    That video helped me realize what I have been struggling with for over a year now, I had a friend since I was in 5th grade and we haven’t talked in 2 christmas I miss her, and I try to reach out to her, she had a pattern of desparation for love and whenever she dated a guy I would lose her, and she found a guy that her neediness didn’t scare off, he used it to manipulate her. So now I’m out my best friend, it makes me sad, but now I can see and say it was a toxic relationship and that she is a wounded person, however that was half of our relationship. She had a good heart but she was jaded and didn’t love herself, had a bad home life, very insecure, I was drawn to that, I wanted to help her, so maybe I was part of the toxicity. I think helping her minimized my own issues. Even knowing all that I still have a spot reserved for in my heart if she needs me.Maybe I’m the wounded one??

  • mellissa

    thank you 4 the video, im haveing trouble letting go of a close friendship that ended. the pain is so real. i dont know how to let go. i still sit and look out my window waiting for my friend to pull up. im devistated i wasnt given a chance to explain my side of the story.very hurt Mellissa

  • mellissa

    your video came at a time when i cant get over the pain of a friendship that ended. i wasnt given a chance and i cant beleive the pain is this totaly devistated and i still sit by my window waiting for my friend to pull up i dont know how to let go

  • Mary-St. Louis

    This video was hysterical; thanks for the laughs! I love that you can laugh at yourself and the daily things that can get a person down if we let it. I think I’m going to start videoing myself and laugh even more! Thank you!

  • Your Name

    Thanks for the video, In the last year a friendship of 40 years has ended and i don’t even know why. I have come to realize that i have been treated like a second class citizen for so long, i had become used to it.I always felt that my friend would be herself when she wasn’t overworked or in menopause or some other reason, but things didn’t change. I feel like someone died. We told each other everything we laughed all the time, I am so confused, and devastated I dream about the fun we had with our kids and, garage sailing, endless memories, I can’t seem to process. Well that was last june and we are totally estranged i guess. How can i deal with this , i was 21 when i met her and we were both pregnant and laughed , and now I AM ALMOST 61 AND MY WHOLE LIFE HAS CONSISTED OF THINGS WE DID TOGETHER,HAPPY TIMES, SAD AL TIMES AND IT IS GONE.Sue

  • Your Name

    This video could not have come at a better time. I believe GOD put it in my life at the perfect moment. I have been contemplating ending a friendship for about 3 wks now. This person and I shared a “decent” close friendship for almost 10 yrs. Now that we have children, she likes to compare and contrast her kids w/mine, and likes to try to tell me how to raise my kids, and sometimes will make idiotic comments about my kids and even put them down! My mind was pretty made up before this video, but I know for sure that this will end because I truly only want friends in my life who will lift me up and be a source of encouragement, not put me down. My kids are so much more important than this so-called “friendship”, and I will NEVER mourn something that should have ended long ago, in fact, I will rejoice when it’s over!..Thanks for helping me see the light!

  • Your Name

    What advice do you have for people who on the outside appear to have a lot of friends but in reality have acquaintances? I always hear comments like “you are such a good listener.”, “I can always count on you.”, “You are always there when I need you.” , “You are the go to person, everyone always comes to you with their problems.” Yet, I am also the one that has to make all the contacts for get togethers and over half fall through because something came up or they found something better to do. I am never the one invited unless I happen to be standing in a group that is being invited. When I call, they share everything going on with them but IF they ask how I’m doing, I get as far as, “Things are pretty good, I just found out …” before I get interrupted with “I have to go, I have another call on the line.” I am feeling used at the moment, but have to think there is something wrong with me as this situation is the case with everyone I consider a friend. I feel like it has been years since I’ve had someone I could count on if I needed them or even had a confidante. I tried to bring it up once with one of my friends and was told I was imagining things. It has been six months since I’ve talked with that person as they had to get off the phone and told me they would call me right back. I decided to wait for a call back. Am I imagining things or am I somehow pushing people away without realizing it?

  • Your Name

    Thank you so much. This information came at a much needed time for me. The comment :”stay with your pain, and trust God’s promise to you” really resounds with me. The perfect reinforcement. Also, the reminder on the Video about pain might be a hinderance to the expression of love describes a situation I am presently faced with. Thanks, again.

  • petrie

    Dear YOUR NAME,
    When I read your comment(dated 3/29) about your friends being more like acquaintances, it was like somebody had gotten into my head! I can identify with everything you said, but it is a little more complicated for me because I work with a child and the main friend that I am referring to is his mother. According to my company’s policy, our relationship should be only a professional working one. We are to avoid establishing personal relationships with our clients. But that can sometimes be difficult when you work closely with someone over a period of time. You get to know each other pretty well and share things with each other. And since that is something that has always been difficult for me, I felt pretty connected to her because I was able to share a bit more with her than I usually can with anyone else. We had done a few things socially, but mostly it seemed to me that it was only when it worked for her. Like if she wanted someone to give her a hand with her child at a certain event or there was some other reason for us to do something together. But not very often did I feel that it was just to hang out and enjoy each others company. I invited her over many times, as well as out to movies and a few other things. Each time it was “I would love to-call me later”, but when I did she either acted like we had not even talked earlier or she had made other plans. After this happened over and over again, it became pretty obvious that she had no intention of ever following through on any of these things. There were also calls, texts and a few emails that never got acknowleged or returned. For an insecure person with depression, who has always had a hard time reaching out to others, this can be pretty devastating. Especially when I have seen her make plans with other people for a certain date and time(not just “call me later”) and then actually follow through on what they had planned. Eventually it got to the point where it was bothering me so much I wrote her a long letter trying to explain how I felt and why. She had no idea what I was talking about and still doesn’t! She could not remember ever doing anything like this to me! Really, it was just as hurtful that at the time these incidents occured, she had given so little thought to my feelings she could not even imagine what I was talking about. So of course, this kind of seems like she is thinking, like your friends did, that I am just imagining things. My therapist reminded me that my feelings could never be wrong, if I know how I feel about something, then it is real to me. Other people may be so wrapped up in what is going on with them, that they don’t even realize how what they do affects others. I also feel, like you do, that I haven’t had a really close confidant in a long time and I was hoping that I had finally found someone I could connect with. It’s very dissapointing, but obviously she does not see our relationship in the same way. I am struggling with the same feelings as you-wondering what I am doing that has caused this and then trying to remind myself that I shouldn’t be persuing this type of relatioship anyway (according to company policy). At this point, we are still friendly and cordial, but I am trying hard not to have any expectations and then there won’t be any dissapointments. But it is still hard!

  • Your Name

    Wow! This Came at a Great Time. As If God Placed it here for me.
    Very Recently a childhood Friend Found me. We had been searching for years for each other.
    When we found eachother, It was pure amazement and was like it was supposed to happen. This person was there for my first skinned knee the death of my dad and so many other things.
    We Started a long distance relationship, spoke 6 times a day, and through Web cam as well. It was awesome!
    Then…. Suddenly things got ugly and I couldnt understand why He was Treating me so badly.
    I feel as though This person Died. Like I am mourning a death. I love Him and still do and I want bothing more than for Him to find God and stop being so angry.
    Thank you so much for this video. It came at a much needed time.
    As I still mourn the Death of this friendship, I do know that it will get better in time.

  • Diana Freeman

    I watched and listened to you video about simplifying life, and you said you would take one hour a week for yourself. I think you should take at least one hour every day for yourself to rejuvenate and renew your spirit.
    I learned that early morning meditation gives me inner peace and courage to face each new day. During this 30-minutes every morning, I meditate, pray, and think about what I must do to enrich my life. Again, in the evening, I take at least 30 more minutes to unwind and relax. I often read or listen to a audio tape in bed before falling to sleep. This helps me to relax, and forget about the day’s problems.
    I am glad that I found your blog, and I hope to find enough time to watch, and listen to your advise.
    God Bless,

  • LO

    Which Ann Morrow Lindburg book are you quoting? I am going thru a similar situation. I am grieving.

  • Linda

    thank you for posting a video. I think I get more from a video than I do in articles. I read and write for a living and it’s nice to have an audio/visual article.
    As for friends, your topic is timely. Just this last two weeks has been the ending of a toxic relationship for me. I find that the happier I get, the more independent I get, the more self-confident I get, the more I love myself, the more my friend didn’t like that. I realized that she wanted me to be “just a certain way” to maintain control, which I never let her have really but gave her leeway. We have been very close best friends for about 4 years. She has emotional outbursts when she wants to get her way or point across. Not all the time. Maybe once a year or so. It generally happens when I have a love interest. This time, even though she has a boyfriend, she was interested in my love interest. I talked to her about it and I talked to my love interest about it. He is definitely not interested in her and I am not sure what she things. This was happening in the last two months. This is the third time she’s done the emotional outburst thing and I can’t go back. She ended the relationship in a very mean and pointed manner just last Saturday.
    I actually realize that it’s the best thing to happen. I am glad you posted this because in a way, it gives me also a permission to grieve at the loss a bit, and also to create value and wisdom from the experience. I can see clearly now. Thank you so much.

  • Linda

    thank you for posting a video. I think I get more from a video than I do in articles. I read and write for a living and it’s nice to have an audio/visual article.
    As for friends, your topic is timely. Just this last two weeks has been the ending of a toxic relationship for me. I find that the happier I get, the more independent I get, the more self-confident I get, the more I love myself, the more my friend didn’t like that. I realized that she wanted me to be “just a certain way” to maintain control, which I never let her have really but gave her leeway. We have been very close best friends for about 4 years. She has emotional outbursts when she wants to get her way or point across. Not all the time. Maybe once a year or so. It generally happens when I have a love interest. This time, even though she has a boyfriend, she was interested in my love interest. I talked to her about it and I talked to my love interest about it. He is definitely not interested in her and I am not sure what she thinks. This was happening in the last two months. This is the third time she’s done the emotional outburst thing and I can’t go back. She ended the relationship in a very mean and pointed manner just last Saturday.
    I actually realize that it’s the best thing to happen. I am glad you posted this because in a way, it gives me also a permission to grieve at the loss a bit, and also to create value and wisdom from the experience. I can see clearly now. Thank you so much.

  • Kate

    I often wonder about people who say they are friends, only to find how hurtful they can be. I realize that they are like me–trying to find themselves in trying times; and, can’t always reciprocate with love. Their emotional well is empty and there is nothing left to give at times. Then I wonder–how long do I have to be the giver, and often when they are dry–so am I. How long can a relationship sustain itself, if neither have the ability to give–do you pull back and wait for one to get MORE emotional stability–or do you say–I can’t do this anymore, I have to let it go? Ying/yang. . . . I grabble with that, but the toxicity sometimes overwhelms and that’s when I say enough. And with that, pull back and say–no longer a friend, just an acquaintance. And say whew–I need to be enough for me. In the end I ask: Do they take me toward the light or away from it? It is usually just that simple. . . .

  • Your Name

    In this moment of desperate resurrection,
    I know that God’s love will lead us
    to where we should be.
    For where we should be
    is in His light in the peacefulness of our hearts.
    Not tormented by non compliance and selfish minds that seek only to fulfill their own agenda’s.

  • Kim

    Thank you so much for sharing on this subject. I have been struggling with a friendship with a sister that has been one sided for so long that I am exhausted from the relationship (or deflated as you put it.)
    Again, thank you.

  • kathy

    The video helped me out alot i would like to find the authors name of the book you mentioned and the advise Thank you Kathy

  • Mary

    Then she got up and walked away. Her final words to me were “I can’t be your friend. Why don’t you find a women’s group or something”. This all took place within the space of twenty minutes. This all happened in the space of twenty minutes.
    My grief was enormous. I cried every night for at least an hour, my tears soaking the arm of my sofa, I lost over thirty pounds. I grieved as I have never have in my life.
    A year later, I bought a new sofa and got rid of the old one. I started to regain the weight I’d lost, and began to heal, sort of.
    I now realize that my friend was a very wounded person who could not give love, even after a ten year relationship with me, even after I thought we were closer than anyone on earth.
    Time heals. In the words of my favorite poet, Theodore Roethke, I dare “trust the universe” again. Nothing will ever take away the pain of my friend’s sudden departure, but now I can sleep without sorrow at night.

  • Sunshine

    Wow! This video has helped me understand so much more about my current situation. I too have been struggling with a friendship that I am slowly coming to realize may be unhealthy. He tells me he is 90% sure that he wants to be in a relationship but he needs to get his life straightened out first…he needs to get a job and pay off his bills, he loves me but he is not “in love” with me. I have always been there for him in all of his times of need, never turning my back. Whenever he has needed anything from emotional support to food, I have been there…no questions asked. All the while he has been romantically involved with both me and his ex wife. Over the course of 10 months, every time he gets closer to me, she starts pulling on his heart strings and he pushes me away. As soon as she feels I am not as close, she does something that hurts him and he pulls away from her and relies on me still being the wonderful friend that I am. Very recently he has found out that she has been lying about her romantic encounters with men other than him which I had been trying to tell him all along. Now that he knows the truth, I am at a point where I do not feel this ever going forward in a positive way due to the fact he is wounded like described in the video and is unable to recriprocate anything to this friendship thus it will never transpire into a relationship. I now feel that I deserve to be truly loved with the same love I have to offer. This friendship is not a safe haven for that committment.

  • JOHN


  • Geeta

    I appreciate many aspects of the video. It exudes sincerity and it allows the viewer to feel your words.
    Presently, I am conflicted with deciding on whether or not let go of a friendship (of 15 years). So much has changed between my friend and I that we’ve simply grown apart and most importantly – not together.
    My biggest dilemna is letting go of a friendship that I’ve had for nearly a 1/3 of my life … after so much time, one would like to think that the relationship stood on firmer ground. What a disappointment to stand so corrected.
    Your video has helped me view things from a different perspective. A perspective that may be able to give me the answer that I’ve been searching for. Thank you for that perspective.

  • meka

    its ironic that i came across this posting today, because just monday i ended a 4 year friendship. I was thinking of ways to end it in the past and suddenly a simple conversation helped the time present itself. the friend was always negatively talking about other people and rarely gave positive influence. i found myself not being able to share things with her that friends normally would and that was strange to me. the relationship ended with a loud uncalled out burst by her before she hung up in my face about something so petty. then she sent a text massage apologizing. I responded a few days later with a text explaining to her that i believe our friendship has ran its course and for her to continue be the strong woman that she is. I know i probably hurt her but i feel it was needed for my own sake. a friendship should not take away energy, but restore it. I’m glad i made this choice so that i can allow only positive energy into my life.

  • Confession

    I decided to end a many years friendship, because I was told in other words to be toxic. I accept my shortcomings, she was also kinda judgemental and that was a very bad match.I´m accepting and trying to fix my mistakes.I understand with my head, but not with my heart because I was deeply hurt. Not feeling very willing to make friends and to be open lately. Never thought being hurt by a friend could be so devastating.

  • Janet

    This video eases the guilt of letting go of a friendship. My question is how do I deal with an extremely toxic, irrational and even hostile relationship with a daughter in-law? No matter how I try to reason, stay calm and try to emphasize the positive this person is very hurtful and won’t let things move forward. That is a relationship I don’t think it is possible to just eliminate because of family. If anybody has some good thoughts, I am totally open.


    thankyou so much-your video really helped me release still more a friendship-unrequited love relationship. keep up the wonderfull work! love, tom

  • http://empowerment Elizabeth

    This is a comment to John. Do not wait for this friend to support you, move on. We cannot control others in supporting us. Move on, try new things and meet new people to support us. You can do it.
    This video reminds me when I got of a relationship with a friend in highschool, 15 years ago. She ended up being controlling and using me. I felt so empowered leaving and not listening to her voice messages.

  • Jane

    This is a response to Janet’s comments .
    Hi Janet,
    Came across your post and realized that …
    a book titled “Are you the one for me?” by Dr. Barbara
    de Phyllis (hope that I didn’t misspell her name).
    In that book, there’s a chapter about Toxic in-law –
    how to define the behavior and how to react, etc …
    Hope this helps.
    May all be well with you ^.^

  • Your Name

    I ended my relationship with my ex a year and five months ago. Well really he ended it but I just kept trying to get him back. He left me for another girl after all I did for him and his family. I gave him rides when he didn’t have one, I gave him and his family food when he didn’t have nothing to eat. A year and five months ago he picked a fight with me just so he could go do what he wanted to do with other girls. He wanted out of the relationship and I just he didn’t want to be a man about it, so he picked a fight. I said somethings about him because he did something very stupid that he wouldn’t have done at his mama’s house. He got mad and things haven’t been the same since. I held on even though he was with another girl and still is until this day. But it was time for me to wake up and see things for what it really was. He didn’t want me and he never loved me for the jump, he was just using me. When he got him a car he got him another girl and just said to hell with me. But I’m getting over it and I’m dating somebody new now, what goes around comes around and he will get what’s coming to him sooner or later

  • Your Name

    I uaed to have a mother-in law I couldn’t get along with. But, because she was the mother of the my husband I that time, I’ve make it a point to get along with her even the circumstances I was in with her.Yet, I’ve fetl at the time my husband being her son could of say something to her. But he never did, until it took something out of me to let her know that regardless of her reaction to me and my relationship with her son, I believe that I’ve reached my point of trying to make our relationship work. I’ve told her, we both love the same person, at the least let’s both of us try to be civil to one another, if not for us, at least for him. Because we love him. And since that time we became civil to one another.

  • Isaac

    this is so true….n it hurts me to see this…cuz I have had friendships go sour so often…n they were good friendships…life has taken extreme turns on me and I have been rocked violently by them….God has lifted me up ,however, and I have regained most of my feelings. Some of my lost friends I have rekindled with…thank God.

  • Dave

    About 3 years ago and after being best friends for about 9 years I decided to end a friendship. Ending this friendship with the Alpha Male of this group also meant distancing myself from the rest of the pack of guy friend devotees. As I look back I think I might have outgrown the group but I also realized that I did not appreciate the infractions that existed within it; a conflict of values, etc. (whatever).
    I missed hanging out with this group for a long time. Sometimes I still do but eventually I got busy with other people doing differenting things. it has opened up another world/life that is turning out to be very fulfilling.
    The trap that I fell into was the fact that they made me feel like a brother conspiritor. Charm was unknowingly used almost as a weapon of choice.
    I am not as gullable as I have been in the past to jump into a friendship. In fact, I have since ended new friendships short when I felt that they were going in a direction that I didn’t want to go in.
    Friendships take a lot of energy; sometimes too much. I’m tired of all words with no substance.

  • Your Name

    I’m so pleased to see others reading Anne Morrow Lindbergh’s book “Gifts From the Sea”. Back in 1994, my mother gave me her only copy she’d received from her best friend in 1955, when Mom was pregnant with me. My Mother’s intuition must’ve told her I needed to gain some wisdom at that time in my life.
    I read it while sitting on a beach for three days, and I found myself in those pages. It’s of the most powerful and insightful books for women I’ve come across. I love how AML spoke from her own experience and named each chapter after a shell from the sea. Like Anne, my mother had lost a child, and eventually I did too.
    Thank you for quoting one of the passages and sharing your views on friendship. While it’s true we cannot fully give of ourselves to our friends while we’re emotionally unavailable, the good news is, we can find our way back, and in doing so, we discover who our friends really are.

  • http://4everhisdaughter@beliefnetcommunity 4everhisdaughter

    True friends are much like the seasons…they always return in their full splendor! Their are some seasons that we would rather not deal with, like winter.
    However, we know that in order to enjoy summer and spring, winter must be endured. The “friends” that we think of as having lost are merely winters.
    Some good things happen to you in the winter, but they would have been much more enjoyable in the summer! There are some pleasant memories from even the most tumultuous friendships, but how much more enjoyable when done with a TRUE friend!
    I have been blessed to have the same best friend since the age of 8, we are now both 51 years old. We dont talk everyday, sometimes we may go a year or so, but when one of us needs the other, we pick up and fly a thousand miles to be there for our friend. Just remember…Winters Never Last. To read a poem by the same title that I wrote just go to MY JOURNAL located on beliefnet.

  • undefined

    Their are friends and their are want to be friends I have had both. I have two friends who have been my friend more than 42 years.When you find a true friend they are your friend for life I was disappointed by someone who I thought was a friend and we are no longer friends ans she is suppose to be a child of God.

  • Safiya

    At first I didn’t know what its like to be hurt until 2009 of July. I had this person in my life that meant the world to me that i refered to as my best friend. On her birthday I took her out to eat and spent time with her. As soon as she cane back to Texas she broke my heart by going and spreading horrible bad rumors to my relatives that were not true it hurt me so bad til i almost lost my life because i never thought my best friend would do something so terrible but she did, I have not heard from her or the relatives that were involved in these nasty rumors with her. to me if she was my friend a real true friend she would have never did this but i learned my lesson. I don’t talk or call her or talk to my realatives.

  • Chris

    I really liked this video, it gave me insights into past failed friendships. However, friendships are give and take and while the person might not lift me up at this moment (they might be needing me right now), I don’t think that’s enough reason to give up on them – otherwise I wouldn’t have any friends left!!! Of course, if it’s constant and they never reciprocate, it’s a losing battle and you’re being used – time to go.

  • rose

    i find this to be true. now i am in my 50;s. i have had friends come and go. i have not really found a true friend.other then my daughter. we are close. i really don;t trust alot of people. i guess you can say that i have been wounded to many times. i have come to find out that i think it is me, and i am happy to figure out this. so i am nice to alot of people. i get along with alot of people i work with many nice people. but i am not close with anyone. i chose to be this way. i feel happier and comfortable with this. i have god, my family. husband, daughrt and son. they have alot of friends , which is fine and healthy.

  • Trish

    I love this video!
    I have had many different kinds of friendships through out the years, but find in my 40’s, that I am much more selective about whom I let in close. Like most of us, I have been deeply betrayed, and sadly , which I don’t enjoy admitting, have not always BEEN the best friend, nor known how to be. I have put up walls to keep me from more hurt, and now I am working through the issues in learning how again to be vulnerable in a way that shows wisdom. I am working hard on becoming the kind of person I would like to befriend, and trust that God will place in my path like minded souls to share this journey with.
    Theresa you are so beautiful and do excellent work. Thank- you!

  • Vijay

    I have also a friend something like she was very near to my heart. But unfortunately i don’t know, started misunderstanding me and immediately thrown away from her mind. But the wound she made in my mind still incurable. And still I love her as much as before.

  • Leeann

    I have had toxic relationships throughout my life. The only true friends other than a few that I grew up with and ones that I have been back in touch with since joining facebook are the wonderful friendships I have at church. I am the giver and most that have hurt me realized that and saw a chance to take advantage of me and my kindness. I miss having girlfriend type relationships, don’t get me wrong I am very blessed by the friendships I have within the church but most go out and drink ect. and I don’t do all that. For one I can’t b/c of my medication and second I have no interest. I do have one I could and she is a great support I guess I am just afraid of those open wounds opening.
    Great video Therese God bless you and your family.

  • tree

    Wow… it was a perfect time in my life to listen to the words on the video. I loved it. i will apply it.

  • sharn

    Hi, I read your posts all the time however never commented on the wealth of truth you bring to us all. I am a depression sufferer as well and i have a friend that she does not truly understand what I am going through and for years I have tried to deal with her statements but lately, i can’t. I don’t want to be a rude person because I can be from time to time.and the crazy thing is she was diagnosed as bipolar when she experienced the 911 tragedy. She is now a practicing jehovah’s witness and I don’t believe in the way they teach about god and jesus however as her friend i don’t disrespect her choice. My thing is how do you let go without argueing and feeling bitter?

  • chacha

    it really happens…. it exactly happened to me… i guest there every reason for everything happens…

  • marie

    the worst is when that toxic relationship involves a family member

  • Loretta

    I have a person that wants to call me her BFF at her convience and contact me when ever she wants but when I contact her for what ever she acts like I committed a crime I couldn’t do it any more I told her we use to be BFF and I wished her the best

  • jenn

    i agree, it is really, really hard when one of the most toxic relationships you’ve ever had is a family member…what can you do w/the guilt & manipulation?



  • Your Name

    i agree with all comments,but sometimes people who are mad they are mad for reasons that are not worth giving up on a 20yr.relationship..
    and does not matter if it family or not!it is tarnished from that point on.we need to make sure this is what we want and if the reason is strong enough to be life changing….

  • Jarrod@ Optimistic Journey

    I think the questions that you mentioned in this video are very crucial questions for one to ask and answer in order to determine a healthy friendship.

  • Nancy

    Great video. Very helpful. I had to let go of a “toxic friend” last July with the last straw: this person has been a friend to me since we were 4, we grew up together. She has gone one way and I’ve gone another. We have always come back together but we have always grow apart at the same time. Finally, after she decided not to attend our daughter’s wedding in August, I have decided that I cannot go back and let her hurt me again. This last hurt was BIG. She had no good excuse not to attend. My daughter was extremely hurt as well. From time to time that “guilt” of my own brokenness arises and I think, “you should make amends, apologize, crawl back…” and then I realize, “apologize for what? Why do I want that toxicity in my life?” It always ends in pain. I think the idea of her friendship is more of a romantic one, because we did grow up together, everyday, until each married. A romantic notion is no reason to continue a toxic friendship. This video helped me to realize it’s OK to go thru a sort of grieving process. There is a void—but it must be filled with something better.

  • JLLB

    Terese, you are such a blessing! You always seem to write or video what I’m experiencing at the same time. I think God has sent you as an angel for me. I am currently going through this with two “friends” (although I have no true friends). When you said how you need to evaluate whether a person builds you up or tears you down after you’ve had contact with them really struck me! One has pretty much stopped calling or emailing and the other only calls when she needs something so I hesitate and groan when she calls, yet I still pick up. After many, many calls of her complaining about her life, she found an excuse to hang up. Once – ONCE, she asked about my life.
    The depression is severe right now and I suffer from agoraphobia (and feel as if everyone has forgotten I even exist). She didn’t want to hear it and gave all of the positive platitudes. I have heard from her only once since them and again, it was because she needed something. I have “broken up” with one friend, but with the help of my psychologist I did it through a letter and I was in control of it. These seem much more difficult and I must remember what you said and the truth that I am NOT built up, yet torn down by them. Thank you over and over again for this video. As I struggle with whether life is even worth living and my aloneness, I feel like you get it and somehow, although I don’t know you, you make me feel less alone. You are sent from heaven.

  • behindthesmile86

    I’ve attached a link to my personal story about losing my best friend. For 12 years she was my other half, my partner in crime, but when she began a new relationship with a guy who did not like me, and did not want me apart of her life, our once unbreakable bond slowly diminished. Eventually, we “broke up”… leaving an unfillable void in my heart. Please read my story, I’m sure there are many of you who can relate to the pain that comes with losing a close friend, and the broken heart that feels like it will never mend.
    I’ve enclosed a poem I wrote about our friendship:
    “Best Friends” – Doesn’t Mean Forever
    Twelve years of memories I know I’ll never forget
    Beginning in fifth grade when we first met
    Laughing, crying, and sharing dreams
    Taking chances and going to extremes
    “Count On Me” – was “our” song
    Until Petey Pablo’s “Raise It Up” came along
    Mrs. Carigg’s class, 7th grade, and DC nights
    So many laughs and even a couple fights
    Through the broken hearts, disagreements and tears
    It was always me and you throughout the years
    Such an unbreakable bond, or so I thought
    We were best friends, in case you forgot.
    Unexpectedly, life intervened and tore us apart
    Leaving me with an unfillable void in my heart
    Betrayal, heartache, an unforgettable fight
    Too stubborn and hurt to try and make it right
    But this time, there isn’t much point to even try
    There’s little hope that we’ll ever see eye to eye
    Now things are not the same as they were when we were 10
    At times I wish I could go back to how they were back then
    A time when you were my pillar, standing beside me, strong
    Always there, holding me up whenever anything went wrong
    Maybe our friendship was never meant to last
    Maybe I should just leave it all in the past
    Maybe we finally had to learn to stand on our own
    To be able to get by without the other on the phone
    Though our friendship is over, it’s one I’ll never forget
    Although it hurts now, it’s not something I regret
    The playground and Boulevard will forever remind me of you
    And a time when our friendship couldn’t have been more true
    The memories of our times together will never be erased
    The space in my heart for you will never be replaced
    I may never have another best friend like you and that’s alright with me
    You’re my irreplaceable, unforgettable friend, and that’s the way it will always be

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