getting over bad friendships

Coming To Terms With Bad Friendships Was What Brought Back My Happiness

Life has a funny way of slapping you upside the head giving you whiplash from time and expectations.


If you would have told me a year ago that my life would look the way it does right now, I would have been dumbfounded, but now I am relieved.

I definitely couldn't have anticipated the drastic changes that I've had to endure or the magnitude of who I once was compared to who I am now. When I step back and disassociate from myself, I can't help but feel like my life has been turned upside. Luckily for me, though, it definitely was for the better.

It's known that time changes people and situations. I had plans of what I expected this year to look like and who I would spend it with. I spent the last three years of college building up to a moment, and this current moment looks nothing like that dream.

I expected to be friends with the people I had around me since freshman year. I expected to live in the same apartment I had slept in for the past two years. I expected parties, daily hangouts with friends and I imagined this blissful senior year picture marked by wine nights and pillow fights with the girls I had loved most.

But life has a funny way of slapping you upside the head giving you whiplash from time and expectations.

I don't have those freshman year friends anymore. I don't have those girls who I thought would be my bridesmaids in my life anymore. I don't live in that crappy apartment, have those daily hangouts or live that life of anticipated bliss. I've had to come to the difficult realization that plans don't always follow through, but I have grown thankful that mine didn't.

Recently, I looked back on those three years and realized how much of it was a lie. When I first started going through the changes, I convinced myself that I had the time of my life during those prior years, but then I realized it – I was equally as miserable as I was happy.

For every good day with my friends, there was a bad one. It's easy to forget and block out all the terrible memories because you don't want to believe they actually happened. In my head, I would play a supercut of all the best moments and leave out all of the terrible scenes that made me feel miserable.

I forgot that feeling of needing to walk on eggshells to preserve the feelings of someone who didn't care about mine.

I forgot the endless battles of bending over backward for friends who wouldn't walk an inch to help me when I was in need.

I forgot the constant crying and heartwrenching confessions to my mom of how badly I would feel secluded when these friends would show they didn't value my friendship anymore.

I forgot that instant ache I felt in my heart the moment I realized I was replaced by someone else.

I forgot a lot and I believe I subconsciously did it on purpose. I tried to save my heart from reliving those painful memories and years of working tirelessly for nothing. I wanted to blame myself for everything that happened in hopes of finding any type of answer or conclusion for why it all took place. It was easier for me to rest it all on my shoulders than to blame the people I thought would never want to hurt me.

In my 21st year of life, I've had to actually come to the conclusion that people aren't what you expect them to be. Just because you paint them as the epitome of sisterhood does not mean that is what they are. Holding someone on a high pedestal only makes you lose sight of the dirt on their feet and their eagerness to use you for all that you're worth.

Just because you grow up doesn't mean they will too.

Some people have no desire to grow and instead find comfort in complacency. They settle into their belief of how their life is and their image of happiness. But just because they settle doesn't mean you have to too.

I settled for the happiness my friends thought they had. I never wanted to reach further in my life out of the fear of leaving them behind. I stifled my abilities and goals to make sure we stayed on the same page and to make them feel loved. I didn't fight for my own happiness just to avoid the possibility of hurting them and making them feel anything less than adored.

Ultimately, I realized I made myself unhappy to make them happy.

Although at times I want to regret the mistake I made in trusting people who didn't my back in the long run, I've grown more as a person in the past few months than I have my entire life. I've had to learn how to pick myself up and move on, literally. I've learned to expect less from people and accept them for not only who they are but also what they're not.

I can't force people to be what I imagine as the perfect friend. I've worked on not putting all my cards in the hands of a few people and have instead spread them out into a community. I don't measure my happiness by what three friendships in my life look like anymore, but instead, how much joy I have experienced in learning from more people around me. I've opened my eyes and have stepped out of darkness, no matter how badly I wanted to stay in a cave of isolation and pain.

As much as I wanted to hate the people who failed me, I can't. I realize now that part of the problem was that I actually wanted more. I chose to hold myself back to protect people who didn't correspondingly care about protecting me, and that's what I hated most. A lot of what happened was my doing because even if it was subconsciously, I was trying too hard for people who weren't doing the same for me, and I felt disappointed. I put my eggs all in one basket and when that wicker bin dropped, I felt like every last shell shattered. The problem was that I was the only one holding that basket up and eventually, my arm got tired and gave out.

My advice to you is to pay attention to the signs. If you find that your friendships are equally as frustrating as they are rewarding, get out. Don't convince yourself to stay when you too begin to play the compilation video in your mind of all the best moments. You need to decide what is best for you before you feel like your friendships have run dry and like you have nothing left.

The grass is greener, I promise you. As someone who felt stuck living in a wasteland, I've climbed to the mountaintop and can finally breathe the fresh air. You can too.

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The Truth About Young Marriage

Different doesn't mean wrong.

When I was a kid, I had an exact picture in my mind of what my life was going to look like. I was definitely not the kind of girl who would get married young, before the age of 25, at least.

And let me tell you, I was just as judgmental as that sentence sounds.

I could not wrap my head around people making life-long commitments before they even had an established life. It’s not my fault that I thought this way, because the majority opinion about young marriage in today’s society is not a supportive one. Over the years, it has become the norm to put off marriage until you have an education and an established career. Basically, this means you put off marriage until you learn how to be an adult, instead of using marriage as a foundation to launch into adulthood.

When young couples get married, people will assume that you are having a baby, and they will say that you’re throwing your life away — it’s inevitable.

It’s safe to say that my perspective changed once I signed my marriage certificate at the age of 18. Although marriage is not always easy and getting married at such a young age definitely sets you up for some extra challenges, there is something to be said about entering into marriage and adulthood at the same time.

SEE ALSO: Finding A Husband In College

Getting married young does not mean giving up your dreams. It means having someone dream your dreams with you. When you get lost along the way, and your dreams and goals seem out of reach, it’s having someone there to point you in the right direction and show you the way back. Despite what people are going to tell you, it definitely doesn’t mean that you are going to miss out on all the experiences life has to offer. It simply means that you get to share all of these great adventures with the person you love most in the world.

And trust me, there is nothing better than that. It doesn’t mean that you are already grown up, it means that you have someone to grow with.

You have someone to stick with you through anything from college classes and changing bodies to negative bank account balances.

You have someone to sit on your used furniture with and talk about what you want to do and who you want to be someday.

Then, when someday comes, you get to look back on all of that and realize what a blessing it is to watch someone grow. Even after just one year of marriage, I look back and I am incredibly proud of my husband. I’m proud of the person he has become, and I’m proud of what we have accomplished together. I can’t wait to see what the rest of our lives have in store for us.

“You can drive at 16, go to war at 18, drink at 21, and retire at 65. So who can say what age you have to be to find your one true love?" — One Tree Hill
Cover Image Credit: Sara Donnelli Photography

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Why You Should Bring Your Close Friend As Your Formal Date

Before asking that cute girl to formal think about asking a friend


Every year since I was a junior in high school I have always looked forward to homecoming or prom. When I got to college I began to look forward to my fraternity formal. I was never concerned with what to wear or the expense of formal but rather who I was going to ask. It can be difficult to make a decision. If you ask anyone friends with me they will tell you how I am one of the most indecisive people out there. There are so many people I am friendly with or have a close relationship that it can feel difficult to make a decision. But let's look at that phrase again. You might think why does he want to bring someone who is his friend to his fraternity formal rather than someone he likes or is dating. To answer this question, some of the girls I have liked I have not been able to be the true me around and that also applies to the girls I have dated as well. I am different around my friends and I want someone to know the real me rather than me just having to pretend.

Maybe I am still experiencing the effects of a fun weekend but I have noticed that every formal or prom that I have brought a date with not only was a fun formal but interacted and connected well with my friends. That is the main thing I look for in a formal date, they need to be liked by my friends and many of them are still pretty friendly after the formal. You are spending the weekend with them and the drive down for you formal. There will be a lot of time spent with your date so it is important to bring someone you know you will have fun with. I am not saying that there isn't anything wrong with bringing someone else but I always found it best to bring a friend if you are not dating someone.

Think about the people you know you will always have fun with. This can be an indication of who you should bring and why but you should also think about the positives in this situation. Your fun and the time spent with the people should be prioritized before anything else. This event is about you and you should have someone with you that you know is fun to be around and someone you can enjoy yourself around along with your friends. Friends know you as well as you know yourself so there is not an idea of having to pretend to be someone else. The good thing about friends is that you do not run out of things to talk about and there is always something new to learn. Take your formal as a trip that you get to experience with the people closest to you. That is my take.

The key for me is to know that I will have fun with my date at formal. The drive to formal can be long and you are sharing a hotel room with your date along with spending time with them during the trip. I talk a lot. I want someone I know who I can carry a conversation with and will not just respond with words such as Yeah or Sounds good. I have always been able to remember not only my formals but specific parts of it as well. I think this is possible because of who I have brought and the memories I made with them.

Formals are important to everyone so think about who you want to spend that moment with. There is nothing wrong with bringing someone who you like but there also is nothing wrong with bringing a friend. Some people might bring someone they are dating but you should not have to compare yourself to other people. Do what makes you happy but remember this weekend is about you and you deserve to bring someone you will have fun with.

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