A portrait of two women sitting back-to-back in anger.

Lack of communication, a loss of trust, and fading chemistry are the most common issues that lead to a . But what very few realize is these same reasons can also make people think of breaking up with their friends.

Yes, even the strongest friendships can crack. In fact, most after seven years, according to one study. Whatever pushes you two to grow apart, leaving things unresolved can compound the pain and confusion. So, if you find yourself on shaky ground with a friend, here’s why breaking up may be for the best.

Some Things Can’t Be Fixed

Every relationship, including a platonic one, is built on expectations. The problem is that yours may not align with your friend’s. Perhaps you seek daily check-ins via text or FaceTime, while your pal only calls when she’s scheduling brunch. Or maybe they’re the type to send a birthday wish at 12 o’clock on the dot, and you’re a birthday forgetter. The bottom line is you both have a different understanding of what your friendship needs to stay afloat.

Ideally, when you feel hurt by your friend’s action or lack thereof, you should first communicate with them openly. If they express genuine concerns over your feelings and put effort into improving things, then all is well.

But of course, you can’t always get what you want. A dry texter might never become a conversation master, no matter how many times you’ve aired your frustrations. That doesn’t necessarily mean they’re a terrible friend; you just have different friendship styles. And if it’s something you can’t tolerate, it’s time to go your separate ways.

Dealing with a Toxic Person Is Not Worth the Energy 

Another major reason for breaking up with a friend is betrayal, like behind your back or stealing your money. Whether it’s a one-time incident or a repeated pattern of dishonesty, confronting your once-close confidant is incredibly challenging, especially when emotions are running high.

The number one rule in how to deal with toxic people? Don’t sweep the betrayal under the rug. Allow yourself to feel sad and angry, but also recognize that you deserve an explanation.

Breaking Up with a Friend: It Doesn’t Have to Be Complicated 

Sometimes, staying in a relationship is more painful than leaving it. A clean break is necessary when you and your soon-to-be-ex friend are not on the same wavelength anymore. Before pulling the plug, keep these tips in mind.

Don’t go on a rant.

Speaking up about your disappointment is the right move. What’s not okay is attacking them with a long list of all the ways they suck. Be respectful. Try approaching the topic with the “I feel this when you do that” statement. Give one or two specific examples to drive the point home – no need to get into the nitty-gritty.

Give them some space.

Breaking up is never easy, especially for the dumpee. They may question what went wrong (as they should). The least you can do is let them process their thoughts. In such moments, offer them space to share their side of the story.

Your friend might want to mend the relationship. If you trust them and are willing to work things out, that's wonderful. But if you don’t have the capacity to start over, stand your ground.

You should have an exit plan.

You can’t predict how your ex-friend will react during and after the breakup. They might be relieved (the best-case scenario), pull the poker face, or go ballistic. That’s why it’s important to prioritize your and safety. Have the “talk” at a public place so you can immediately leave when the situation gets too heated. It’s also a good idea to update a trusted friend or family member about your plan.

Take a step back from the chaos.

If you and your ex-friend are in the same social circle, disengage from group activities while the breakup is still fresh. Wait until the wound is healed, or at least, when both parties can be cordial towards each other. Spare the rest of your friends from the awkwardness, please.

Go have fun.

Great, now you’re missing your former friend. That’s natural. It’s hard to dislike someone with whom you shared countless memories, even though they’ve hurt you. But instead of dwelling in the past, do things that make you happy to occupy your mind.

How should you spend your spare time? Maybe learn , go hiking, see a concert, or go . You can also focus on self-care by indulging in a relaxing shower or bath.

Show your hair some love with Dove Advanced Keratin Treatment Mask, which instantly makes your . If your and dull, wash it with Dove Facial Cleansing Mousse Moisture Care. It combines the power of 40% Active-boost serum and hyaluronic acid, giving you brighter and plumper skin for up to 24 hours. Last but not least, apply Vaseline Intensive Care Deep Restore Body Lotion all over your below-the-neck area. Infused with aloe vera extract and petroleum jelly, this non-sticky lotion keeps your skin moisturized three times longer.

Ultimately, breaking up with a friend is a decision only you can make. Does this relationship bring you more smiles or stress into your life? If it’s the latter, let it go. A break might be what you both need to be better friends.