Have you ever had a friendship break-up? Some friendships dissolve naturally, because time and distance cause you to drift apart. But other friendships come to an end because of some unfortunate circumstance. One of you and then both of you said or did something hurtful, and the two of you can’t move pass it. Or one of you has decided that there is something about the other that doesn’t match or fit with your life and personality. And so then there’s a friendship break-up. Sometimes this is done confrontationally. Other times, the other person begins to block you out.
And it is painful.
Hurt, rejection, and loss overwhelm you — not just in the immediate moment, but you find that it is hard to really forget this loss.
Friendship means entrusting ourselves to others. It means entrusting our dreams and wishes, our heart’s utmost desires, and our faults, flaws, and weaknesses. When a friendship ends, it is so deeply painful because it means the loss of these things, and that leaves an impact on us.
In a friendship, we have this understanding that we accept each other for who we are, warts and all. So when a friendship ends, we feel a sense of rejection. They knew everything about me, and they are rejecting me! It rocks our world because it unearths that deep insecurity we have in ourselves that we are not worth loving because of our flaws. When we lose the unconditional love that we shared with our friend, we feel wary of venturing forward with our hearts once again. But “wary” is not strong enough of a word. It’s more like we slam the brakes and skid to a halt until there is smoke and burning rubber. We actually feel incapable of being truly vulnerable and showing our true selves.
In a friendship, we also entrust our dreams to our friend. We share our dreams and they hold those dreams with us, and sometimes, they even hold our dreams for us, in those moments of doubt and discouragement when we are unable to hold them for ourselves. When the friendship ends, it feels like they have just let go of everything they have been holding in their hands, and everything has fallen with a crash onto the floor. When things fall to the floor with a clatter, our hearts also take a dive into our stomach. We are shattered. And who will help us pick up these pieces off the floor? How will we ever be able to find someone else who is willing to hold our dreams with us?
The healing begins when we acknowledge that a friendship break-up is a thing. It is a painful event that happened in our lives, and as with all painful things, we need to bring them to the Lord, for he is the one who will help us pick up the pieces off the floor.
We need to tell him what happened, and we need to express our disappointment and hurt and anger over the stupidity of the situation.
And then we need to forgive. Sometimes this means forgiving them for hurting us. Sometimes it means forgiving them for not forgiving us. Once that is done, our hearts will feel a loosening. That’s the beginning of healing.
And then we have to come to grips with the fact that God loves us, warts and all, always and always, unconditionally, so we are worth loving. Our hearts will warm at this next step of healing.
And as healing continues, we will begin to feel the loss as sorrow, and we will need to express to the Lord our grief over the loss of a beautiful bond that he had given us. And so we ask him to come to us, and he will come to us, for truly he is close to the brokenhearted and saves those who are crushed in spirit.
And then when all this is said and done, there will come a moment where we need to entrust our hearts to the Lord, so that we can entrust ourselves to new friendships once again. Although this feels impossible, it is possible, and it is part of the healing that we seek.
But how? we ask. Is it really possible?
[To be continued.]