We’ve all been there—scrolling through our phones and looking at pictures from a few years ago. You look back and cherish all the fond memories. As you continue to scroll, a photo pops up of you and your childhood best friend… You wonder how they’re doing. And later go on a downward spiral wondering if they ever kept their promise in pursuing their passions, or if that one particular phase they went through ended. (We’ve all had our phases—I had a terrible boy phase in high school.) Then, a feeling occurs in the pit of your stomach. You remember how things ended. You start to blame yourself: if only you didn’t start that fight or you wish you had put more effort into the friendship.
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My childhood best friend and I did everything together growing up. We had sleepovers, dance practice, and went to family and friends’ functions. My childhood best friend was two years younger than me, so naturally, we grew apart when I went to college and she was still in high school. I was surrounded by new experiences: sororities, concerts, pulling my first all-nighter or having my first shot of alcohol—you name it. During college, I stopped going to family functions, sleepovers, and later joined my college dance team. I didn’t realize how much I neglected my childhood best friend until she enrolled in the same university and wasn’t as excited to hang out with me.
I was confused, hurt; I wondered why MY person didn’t want to spend time with me like the old days? Or, why she didn’t have room for me to go with her to parties or events. It felt even worse to be passive-aggressively dismissed. I later noticed she would stop hyping me on my Instagram pictures and would continue to keep her distance. (I don’t care how close you are. If you don’t hype up your best friend on her Instagram pictures where she’s being vulnerable and putting herself out there then you’re not a true friend—just saying.)
Anyway, we went to the same college, lived on the same campus and yet didn’t have the slight inkling to meet up. Now you must be wondering, why didn’t you be honest with her? Tell her how much you miss her. It’s not as easy as it seems because even after telling her about how I felt, things didn’t go back to the way they were. I was once told that when a cup breaks you can mend it together but the crack will always remain. If the same effort is not mutually received in a friendship, then it comes down to whether it’s really worth the effort in the first place.
Now, this article isn’t about my personal relationship, it’s safe to say that it’s okay to grow apart from a friendship. It’s okay to have different interests, make new friends, and take some time for yourself. There are so many guides on how to get over a breakup with a significant other, but there aren’t many guides on breaking up with your best friend. When you break up with a significant other, you always have your best friend to console and support you. But when THAT supports leaves, life becomes ever more difficult. Your achievements don’t feel that great, going to events isn’t the same, and even having your favorite pani puri from your Nani doesn’t FEEL THAT GREAT.
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So, here are five things Bollywood movies taught me about getting over a friendship.
(If you still haven’t been able to see these (movies) gems…SPOILER ALERT!)
1. ‘Jab We Met’: Flush the pictures down the toilet
Okay, it doesn’t need to be as dramatic. But, try not to see what they’re up to in life too much. How can we do this, you ask? Turn all notifications from your ex-best friend off, this way you’re not getting pop-up messages about when Shefali added a new photo or when Varun changes his relationship status from “it’s complicated” to “engaged.”
2. ‘Kal Ho Na Ho’: Smile more, please
That moment when Aman told Naina to smile more, and suddenly she started to be happy and her life became immediately better. Okay, maybe it had to do with the fact that she was in love, but looking at life in a positive light is important. Do not look at this friendship as a heartbreak, but as a growing experience.
3. ‘Dear Zindagi’: Go find friends again
Dr. Jehangir tries to help Kaira with her insomnia and realizes that after Kaira’s breakup with her childhood sweetheart she is unable to commit to relationships. When my best friend and I started to grow apart, I promised myself I would never get attached to anyone. I was afraid of making friends because I did NOT want to be that vulnerable again. But, this is not a good way of living, you need to surround yourself with people you can count on. You need to make experiences and share them with your loved ones.
It took some time, but I started to be open with people who had the same mindset. I started joining groups of people with similar interests that motivated each other to be the best that they can be.
4. ‘Kapoor and Sons’: Not all friendships will be perfect, but they’ll be worth it
The movie shows that no family is perfect, but the meaning of family is unconditional love to any end. When starting to make friendships, you must realize that not all friendships are going to be perfect. This should not scare you but should challenge you to be open to compromise. I was super sensitive when initially creating new friendships, and every little thing someone did that I didn’t like would cause me to question the friendship. Again, I was scared to create a long-lasting friendship, but when you meet someone that accepts your flaws you should be able to accept their flaws as well.
5. ‘Zindagi Na Milegi Dobara’: You only live once!
Overall, Zindagi Na Milegi Dobara. Do not hide. Live in the present. Push yourself out of your comfort zone. And, just because you feel alone right now does not mean you’ll never find your person.