Blaine Explains: My Best Friend is Under a Mean Girl’s Spell…Can I Save Our Friendship?
Lately my best friend has been ignoring me and hanging out with other girls. I’ve tried talking to her about and she says that she understands and that she’ll hang with me more often, but she never does. We used to eat lunch together every day and now I barely ever see her at all. I really don’t want to lose her friendship. I’ve made friends with the other artsy girl in my class and we’re really close. She used to be friends with my BFF too. I asked her about it and she said she stopped hanging out with my BFF because “She started acting weird. She stopped being herself.” I agree. We’ve both noticed her hanging around the new girl, who can be pretty mean sometimes. I’ve noticed that she’s pretty mean herself now.
What can I do? I want to be friends with her, but I want her to be herself. And I want to be friends with the new girl, but I don’t want to feel like I have to be mean to survive. My BFF, the new girl, the other artsy girl, and I are all pretty popular, so it feels like everyone is watching us to see what we do. I want to patch it all up without the other students gossiping. What should I do?
It appears to me that you’ve seriously thought about this and weighed it from a number of different perspectives. And they are all correct. But, after reading your question, here’s my answer:
I think you have a bit more wisdom and insight than you believe you do. You understand that your friend has changed. She’s obviously unsure of herself and as you’ve also pointed out, most likely is changing to meet the requirements of this new girl.
The artsy girl seems like a rockstar who is there for you during time that isn’t all rainbows and butterflies and perfect harmony. She is showing you what a real friend looks like. And since she’s so cool and understanding, I bet she knows many other people equally as down-to-earth and awesome for you to connect with.
I know it can feel like a break-up, but is it worth groveling and sacrificing yourself to reconnect with your BFF while you’ve got other people surrounding you with support?
It seems like you know you would not be comfortable with changing who you are to fit in. If you choose to give up this friend, stick to it. I know it’s going to, quite frankly, suck to wave “au revoir” to a best friend, and just because you choose not to conform as she did, does not mean that she is out of your life forever. She may come to her senses. She might not.
By choosing to walk away from a toxic relationship, you gain control and place the ball in her court. It is an empowering place to be.
And then there’s popularity piece of the puzzle. Which is shaky, and ever changing. And threatening. But every decision you make cannot be made for the sake of other people, or you are never going to be able to figure out what you want. When you stop making decisions for the happiness or appeasement of others is when you seriously give yourself the arena to find your own fulfillment. The easiest way to do this is to exist among the people who build you up, not the ones who speculate and obsess and gossip behind your back.
Good luck, G! Stick to your guns. You’ve got this one, I’m sure of it.