• Fri. Dec 9th, 2022

Ask Ashlee: Does growing as a person mean ending friendships?

Dear Ask Ashlee,

I have been friends with the same group of women since the 9th grade. We are all in our mid 20’s now and I feel like I am just now noticing the difference in personalities as well as the differences in beliefs. These are my girls, really like my sisters, and I love them so much. The issue I am running into is either they are changing, or maybe it is me, but something feels off when I am with them. We are either partying, drinking, gossiping about something or someone and it’s becoming excessive. I don’t want to make it seem like I am judging them because I’m not. I was doing all of these same things as well with them and it seemed so natural because that’s what we have always done. I’m just at a place in my life where I’m not interested in doing that anymore. Would I be wrong to stop hanging with them as much? I’ve been going back and forth with this for a while. I don’t want to hurt them, but I just find myself not wanting to be around them more and more.

The Original Friend

Dear Original Friend,

So, here’s the thing, I want you to keep this in mind, sometimes growth requires separation, but genuine love never goes away. What do I mean when I say this? It sounds like you are outgrowing your friends which is a very natural and common thing. As you grow and evolve you are changing. Your body continues to change, your goals change, and your mindset especially changes as you continue to grow. This is why your previous actions with them don’t feel right to you anymore. You are not the same woman; therefore, you are not going to enjoy the same activities. This doesn’t mean your love for them has to stop nor their love for you, because when the love is real it doesn’t go away, it just transforms. I promise you that the majority of the older women in your life have endured these same dilemmas and they can tell you that “new friends” can be very refreshing. Open yourself up to the possibility of healthier friendships that align with who you want to become instead of who you once were. I guarantee you start to love the feeling of how positive your new circles are. I just had my book signing this past weekend and none of my friends from high school were present, yet all of my newfound friends were. New friends can open doors for you that old friends can’t. New friends can support who you are today vs the old friends that miss the person you used to be. Again, this is common, and it is ok. Stay true to who you are and focus on being your very best self, everything else will align and fall into place on your behalf. I hope this helps!

Love & Light,

Ash