How to Deal with a Friend Who Has Changed: 15 Steps


Klare Heston, LCSW

Co-written by:

Licensed Social Worker

This article was co-authored by Klare Heston, LCSW. Klare Heston is a licensed independent clinical social worker based in Cleveland, Ohio. With a background in academic counseling and clinical supervision, Klare received her Master of Social Work from Virginia Commonwealth University in 1983. She also has a 2-year Graduate Certificate from the Gestalt Institute of Cleveland, as well as a certification in Family Therapy, Supervision, Mediation and Trauma Treatment and Recovery (EMDR). This article has been viewed 73,795 times.

Co-authors: 23

Updated: February 4, 2023

Points of view: 73,795

Article Summaryx

It’s normal for people to change, but if someone changes so much that it affects your relationship, you may need to talk to them about it. It is best to take a direct approach, so ask your friend if something is wrong. People change for many reasons, but they can also change if they are going through something difficult. If you still want to be friends, tell them that you miss spending time with them. You could say something like, “I really liked spending time together, but you’ve been too busy lately.” If spending one-on-one time feels uncomfortable, try hanging out in a group at first. However, if this friend has gotten worse or is making you feel bad about yourself, you may need to leave the friendship. To avoid any discomfort, slowly move away from them. Only make excuses when you are asked out and use that time to strengthen your other friendships. To find out how to help your friend who is going through a difficult time, read on.

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