Friends for never. Ex-friends recall what was the breaking point for them to sever ties with the people they never looked back on. Talk about a big break. Content has been edited for clarity.
You Can’t Sit With Us
“I made friends with a new girl.
Let’s call her ‘Hannah.’
When I was in middle school she was kinda clingy and annoying. She constantly would put me down, but that was not what made me hate her.
I had other friends, so as annoying as hearing her say, ‘You’d be a terrible mother you should never have kids. But I’m so good with kids, kids love me, I’m going to be a great mom’ was, I could just complain to my other friends and then move on.
For a little backstory, once we got to high school (small town, we all went from the same middle to the same high school) my friends and I would have weekly brunch during the summer as a way to keep in touch.
Hannah never showed because she was busy with sports practice, and rarely accepted other plans for various reasons. I was already getting sick of her since the whole ‘you’d be a terrible mother’ thing when I was confiding in her about my fear of being like my own mom.
It was a pretty sharp turning point where rather than being really good friends with her I started to just tolerate her. And it had happened just a few months before this. So the day before our weekly brunch, another friend set up a time to go see a movie.
She didn’t invite Hannah.
Only me, the inviter, and another girl went. It was a really small group. It wasn’t even a big invite to the whole group Hannah was excluded from. The inviter only invited five people and did so privately. We went and enjoyed the movie, and being preteens posted it on our social media.
No big deal right?
We went to our weekly brunch and as we were finishing up, Hannah pulled up and started screaming at me for not inviting her. She never said she wanted to go, and I wasn’t even the one who did the inviting.
But we were at Firehouse Subs and it was next to a grocery store. It was midday in the summer so there were a lot of people around. And she was throwing a tantrum and screaming at me in public.
That made me hate her
I didn’t invite her to anything else during the summer, and when the school year started I couldn’t avoid her. I told her she was mean and I didn’t appreciate her behavior and didn’t want to be friends anymore.
She took it better than I expected, but she probably saw it coming from the radio silence and my avoiding her the first few weeks back.”
“A college friend of mine got married and my husband and I hung out with them a lot.
I got along really well with his wife and we always had fun.
Well, their relationship ended up being a disaster and after almost a year of marriage counseling, she finally realized he wasn’t going to put forth any effort to fix their relationship.
So, she filed for divorce.
And he responded by telling everyone they knew that he filed for divorce because she cheated on him.
Including her parents. The messed-up thing was that her parents believed him. She came from a spiritual family, her father was a pastor. He was also a devout believer. So to throw her cheating out there among their social circle made her the evil harlot.
And he knew it would happen.
To be clear, she never cheated.
She tried to salvage their marriage but he was a child and acted like he was still single the entire time. When she found out about what he did after being attacked by all these people for being a ‘harlot’, she cornered him and stood there watching while he called everyone to tell them he lied.
Of course, the damage was done.
It was going to be a clean divorce where she had let him keep basically everything while she moved on. But the papers expired and then her lawyer said she needed to have him file for divorce.
And her lawyer also told her she shouldn’t be so kind this time.
When the divorce was finalized, she left. She had no reason to stay in this area because he destroyed her reputation. People still sided with him even after knowing he was a liar. And she cut off all contact with anyone associated with him, understandably.
And I never spoke to him again.
I don’t want to associate with someone who claimed to be a ‘good man’ and spread lies like that.”
“He was smart, funny, and good at what he did.
But the guy couldn’t let his grudges go. He was a bit arrogant to mask his low self-esteem. He was frequently argumentative. I think it was to pad his ego. He had a tendency to suck the air out of a room and had a bit of a drinking problem.
He moved cities a while before I cut ties.
I was genuinely looking forward to the visit, but while I was there, we pretty much only hung out at his and got under the influence. On the last day, I was there and went for brunch.
He drove us but still had three, eleven percent drinks over the course of our meal. I could tell he was having trouble holding a lane. I should have insisted on driving us back, but I had had some drinks myself. And I felt awkward bringing it up.
I’m so grateful nothing actually happened.
I think the single moment that really spelled it out for me had happened maybe four or five years before though. At my birthday party, he got under the influence and kept telling an embarrassing story about my brother from when we were kids.
He told it like five times.
No laughs. Eventually, my brother got fed up and called him out on his bad behavior. My friend spent the rest of the party sulking, and generally was a rude person to anyone over anything.
I almost dropped him then and there.
During the last few years of our friendship, he would still bring up the story about my brother. And every time he did, it filled me with revulsion. After high school pretty much all our mutual friends slowly cut him out.
Guess he kinda wore through everyone’s good graces.
I felt awful about cutting him out since he had been a close friend for so many years. And he didn’t have many close friends left. I had tried to correct some of his bad behavior over the years, but I never saw any changes. And I couldn’t keep myself on fire to keep him warm any longer.
I hope my cutting him out encouraged him to take a hard look at himself and make some changes.
I still worry about him, but I know I’m better off without him in my life.”
Behind My Back
“She was not exactly a close friend but very similar.
Ten years before this happened, I was teaching young refugees and immigrants.
In this kind of work, it’s not uncommon to take care of other problems of the students outside school because they were often without parents. Or their families were still clueless about their new country and how everything worked.
So, there was this girl and over time I helped her, her mother, and her older sister with several things. It stayed like this after school and we got close. Since I had no children, I saw her as a daughter.
She introduced me to her boyfriends. We celebrated Christmas and gave birthday presents, and so on. After being widowed, I started dating again. I also introduced her to my girlfriends. I even put her in my final will.
Fast forward, I was with a woman who I deeply loved with three daughters. And as usual, I had introduced them and they had met.
When one day, my girlfriend was totally mad with me and wanted to break up with me. Later, I found out my ‘daughter’ had told her in secret I would mistreat and deceive her.
Fortunately, I was able to convince my girlfriend it was a lie.
I found out later my ‘daughter’ wanted to inherit my money and house alone. And it had happened after I told her after I die she would have to share with my partner and her new ‘sisters.’ I later also contacted an ex-girlfriend to find out from her, my now ex-daughter tried the same because she was jealous of the presents I gave to this girlfriend. Only then she had even accused me of mistreating her.
Naturally, not she was kicked out of my love and wouldn’t inherit anything.
And if I met her on a street someday, I couldn’t guarantee I won’t beat her up.
And I am not a violent man and so far never hit anyone aside from army combat training.”
Talk Of The Town
“I found out the guy I was friends with was telling everyone in town how bad of a person I was.
And it was a small town. He said I was a liar, a cheater and I didn’t care about anyone. He also said I only was interested in girls to get in their pants.
He only told this to people before they had a chance to meet me because people who knew me knew I was a very quiet and reserved person, and none of it added up.
He wasn’t a very popular guy in high school or the years after. I wouldn’t say I was either since I was an athlete and also super nerdy who collected comic books. But I was well liked because go figure, I just try to be a nice person.
I was very successful in a certain sport and got some attention from that so I don’t know if he was just jealous he wasn’t getting enough attention, I never quite found out why he was doing this but I have guessed it was the issue.
He would do it to our other friends too, but not to the same degree as me.
Anyway, I found out he was just lying about me to anyone who would listen. Even a girl I had dated in high school. He started trying to talk to all of my ex-girlfriends, whom I had been on good terms with.
And in turn, she told my other good friend he was saying all sorts of things about me and was being a generally creepy guy.
I didn’t confront him or anything.
I just stopped hanging out with him and blocked him on all social media. I moved out of state a few years later so it wasn’t hard to avoid him.
He did so many weird, creepy, and snakey things I wouldn’t be able to list them all.
Last I heard, he just alienated the last friend he had because he tried to steal his friend’s girlfriend. The guy was a total neckbeard type and even wore a fedora for his high school senior picture if it tells you anything.
I don’t hate him though.
The guy was clearly just lost and had some internal issues he needed to address.
I hope he found his way.”
“This wasn’t necessarily instant hate, but it only took about a year to go from decades-long best friends to enemies.
I was renting a house with some friends from 2013-2017. People rotated in and out each lease but two of us stayed the whole time.
During our last lease cycle, I ended up bringing in one of my oldest friends. We met when I was three and he was six. He was a little on the slow side and might have been special needs, which made our friendship work out pretty well when we were kids.
But I digress.
Fast forward to our mid 20’s, and I was getting real tired of his behavior. I was not going to pretend to be a saint. I certainly caused my fair share of problems.
But he blew anything I did out of the water.
Once he moved in with me, he stopped regularly showering, brushing his teeth, or cleaning his room. I get it, I could be a slob at times too. But I would clean my room once a week or so to maintain it.
And whenever he opened his door there was a heavy foul stench that permeated the rest of the house. I asked him to clean all the time, and I actually had to tell him to shower too when you could visibly see dirt caked onto his arms. He would walk around barefoot all the time, but because he rarely showered, his feet were black despite being the whitest person I knew.
It was absolutely disgusting.
It took me a long time to realize he stopped doing those things because his parents weren’t there.
Fast forward to the week we’re planning to move out. Everyone in the house agreed to move their things out and to come back to do a deep cleaning. He was the first to move his stuff out and agreed to come back and help clean.
He never came back.
We cleaned the entire house without his help. It wasn’t a huge house, it was probably somewhere around 1800-1900 square feet, but it was a lot of work. I had kept a few of his things I had planned to return to him.
But after he failed to show up to help us, I told him I wasn’t going to return them and he had to come to get the stuff himself.
All he had to do was help us for a few hours one day and we would still be friends.”
I had a boyfriend I was serious with who wound up breaking up with me.
I was very upset by this of course. I had a guy friend who had never been weird or come onto me in the three or four years I knew him. He had invited me over to hang out a couple of weeks afterward. I thought nothing of it because of how polite and chill he had been for years.
I was initially planning to go over until he said I could be his ‘cuddle buddy.’
I instantly knew where this was going to go if I went over and I was not into it. As a matter of fact, I was insulted he thought I was just ready to sleep with him and forget my ex.
So I was like, ‘Dude, did you forget that the love of my life just broke up with me a couple of weeks ago? I’m not interested in that.’
The dude flew off the handle.
He said he was just trying to be nice and show he cared, and how my boyfriend had never loved me to begin with. I was instantly upset by his comment and called one of our other friends sobbing. The other friend reamed this guy out for being so insensitive.
I stopped talking to him, as did most of our friend group because he had been developing a serious drinking issue in the time we’d known him. And his behavior while drinking had been escalating around this time.
I hadn’t known his behavior was worsening because I had stopped partying as much as I used to. The dude went on to crash his car and get multiple tickets for drinking and driving before he got sober. He tried to meet up with me a couple of years later during the initial stages of his sobriety.
He allegedly didn’t even remember the conversation we had because he was already so hammered. Then he had a relapse and called me absolutely hysterical.
I initially tried to comfort him but all he wanted to do was beat himself up and constantly hear how he had done nothing wrong. I got off the phone and just tapered off contact after that.
Last I heard, he was sober and engaged, so good for him.
But darn dude, he was a nasty person and I just didn’t want to see that side come out again should he ever have another relapse.”
“My friend and I had been really close since we first met in high school.
We hung out a lot and did trashy stuff. You know, the usual teenage stuff.
I trusted him a lot and even vented to him sometimes, which was my biggest mistake.
After Christmas, he started to distance himself from me for no apparent reason. And because it was so noticeable, I confronted him about it a couple of times but he just brushed it off as me imagining things.
Cut to a couple of weeks ago, I found out through a mutual friend of ours he had been trying to get rid of me. Out of nowhere, for no apparent reason, he intended to just forget about our friendship and threw it all in the bin.
Turned out he suddenly thought I was boring and annoying.
All the trust I put in him, was gone.
I pressed him about this again and got no response. I was starting to get a bit frustrated and I had enough after what happened two weeks ago.
Basically, he lied to me, multiple times in fact. He had said he was busy and couldn’t hang out, knowing full well I would be left alone. When he in fact just wanted to avoid me. Now, this wouldn’t have been a problem if he hadn’t driven my entire friend group with him.
For some time I was alone because of this.
I talked to some of his old classmates and apparently, this wasn’t the first time he has done something like this. I even went and talked to his ex-girlfriend, who happened to be my friend. And she told me he was a narcissist and they, in fact, had never been dating and it was a lie he made up to look cool.
He even made up an excuse of how they broke up cause she cheated on him and, because of that, people around her started drifting away.
We distanced for good after this.”
“This was a friend I knew online for about 10-11 years.
We were close and talked about a lot of things. They even supported me during some bad stuff that came up.
She started acting strangely during the first year of the global health crisis.
She thought people were excluding her and didn’t like her. We did our best to talk to her and keep her in the loop but we couldn’t be with her twenty-four seven. Plus there were other things we wanted to do that she sadly couldn’t. But we always invited her to join us for voice chats while doing it.
Finally, she just snapped.
She left our discord server and I reached out to talk to her.
Turned out, due to what I’m assuming was her catching a health scare and just overall how things sucked lately, her mental health took a nasty toll. I told her I was worried about her and wanted to help where I could. And it turned into her misunderstanding and manipulating everything I said and trying to use it against me. It got to the point where she wanted an apology from me.
So I apologized, even though I didn’t do anything wrong.
And when I asked for an apology from her I got, ‘Sorry that you misunderstood everything I had said.’
I literally laughed at her and told her to leave me the heck alone. She then tried to turn our friend group against me, but they all believed me over her so now she has no contact with any of them. It sucked because I did think she was going through some mental health issues but if you were not doing anything to address them, I was not going to be your therapist or take this nonsense from anyone.”
Gone With The Wind
“Back when I was just out of college in the United Kingdom, I had a best friend at the time who I had known for maybe thirteen or so years.
We always got on, but in one of those ‘very different people but had known each other for so long we just got each other’ kind of ways.
I remember his family moved to Dubai and all the hardships that came with having your longest friend move so far away. Every now and again, they would visit the United Kingdom and he would stay over at my place, or we would go and stay at his sisters’. Or, wherever we could, to spend our evenings blaring out ‘Gears of War’ and drinking bottles of Boost.
Fast forward, past to where he has begun talking to a girl from my class. And quickly over time he became more and more distant from me and spent a lot more time with her.
No big deal, right?
It happened at the start with most relationships. I voiced my concerns to him about this and he took it well and said he’d do better to see me more.
And I left that day looking forward to getting our friendship back on track.
Well, one day he stayed over at my place and when I woke up he was gone. Turned out he only stayed over mine until I fell asleep and then made a B-line for his girlfriend’s house where he stayed for the rest of the evening.
It left me feeling very upset and disrespected and we never spoke again after that day.
And I don’t regret it one bit.”
“This is probably petty to some.
But once, I was over at her house for dinner like we usually did every Wednesday evening. She’s the kind of ‘blunt’, extroverted friend who wasn’t perfect but made me laugh and I had always given the benefit of the doubt.
So another friend asked me, ‘What do you want to do as a career?’
And me, being 28 and in recovery, had been through a few mindless jobs since getting my bachelor’s. I replied, ‘I’m not sure still. I just want to be comfortable and happy!’
To which the said first friend snorted and scoffed while in the other room.
‘Sorry, (my name) that’s just too rich.’ she said.
She recently got a corporate job at some car business near us and while I laughed it off at the moment, I went home and was really hurt and quite frankly angry.
What kinda friend says that?
Anyway, the distance was for sure needed and was not the first time she’s poked fun at me or made some sort of backhanded compliment. I got accepting friends for their flaws and all but darn, why had I kept hanging out with people like this? Choose people who foster the same energy as you. You become like who you hang out with most.
You deserve to spend your valuable time with kind people.
Heck. So do I.”