Tell Us About Your Most Memorable Breakup With a Friend

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Sometimes there’s more romance to be found in a platonic love song written for a BFF. Sometimes the connection between close friends is more intimate than past partners. And sometimes, when those friendships come to an end, the fallout is much more painful than cutting ties with a boyfriend or girlfriend or whomever. This week, I want to hear those stories—not necessarily the most painful friend breakup you’ve ever experienced, but the most memorable: however it played out. Maybe you reconnected with someone after doing years of reflecting. Maybe cutting them out of your life totally transformed your reality and self-image, and you’re better for it. Whatever the cause and whatever the result, I want to hear every juicy detail. Drop those stories in the comments below.

But before all that, let’s talk about last week’s winners. You shared the best advice you’ve ever received from a mother figure. It... was not as wholesome as I expected, but I loved all your responses nonetheless.:

Deadsnowsarah, you win:

I have mentioned this in another comment thread, but my dear friend who was a manager when I got promoted to a manager for a department store, said to me “your company will never remember how you showed up at 5 am the day after Thanksgiving, or came in on your day off. But your children will remember. “ The perfect advice to a new manager who also happened to be a single mother of a toddler. I have never put work in front of my child and my friend and mentor was the sole reason. I love her still!


rockoutwithyourbockout, your great grandmother sounded amazing:

“Sleep with who you want. You only get so much time. Don’t worry about your body, it’s good no matter what. Just don’t stop having fun. And if you find someone, make sure they’re worth your time.”

-My great grandmother at age 99 before I left the country to study abroad. She also told me to drink a high ball on the plane for her. She was the most beautiful person. That was the last face-to-face conversation I had with her. She passed away after turning 100. She never wavered from adventure even after having kids, leaving an abusive asshole, being a regular who danced on tables at a gay bar in a somewhat rural Southern Indiana town, deciding to live in sin with her best friend whom she had no desire to marry because marriage wasn’t for her, and surviving cancer in her 80s. She “lost a boob” but never slowed down. When she died, she was still getting coffee from her boyfriend in the morning and, shortly before, another gentleman brought her ice cream every afternoon.

We uncovered a HUGE hat box of love letters from the time she was about 14 until she died after she passed.

I named my daughter after her for many reasons.

Squiggles, this is good:

Sex is like euchre. If you have a good hand, you can go alone. Thanks mom!!

The Ghost of James Madison’s Rage Boner, this doubles as sound advice for social distancing... just because you’re bored and depressed doesn’t mean you should blow your money on useless garbage!:

“It’s not what you make, it’s what you have to spend.”

My mother is famously frugal and used to do things like tear paper towels in half and save all the bread heels for the entire year to use for Thanksgiving stuffing. She currently drives a 15-year-old Corolla with about 40k miles on it and has an iPhone only because my sister gave her an old one of hers.

Seabassy, yup:

Don’t ever fake it. They’ll just keep doing it wrong.

Mia Thompson, yikes, but I’m going to go ahead and say there’s more where this comes from, huh?:

After a certain age, all men want is a nurse or a purse.

Bernd, I can relate:

You work hard so that you get to make your own decisions.

This was in reference to teenage me really getting burnt out at being a high achiever in high school. I didn’t understand why I couldn’t just be like the kids who took easy classes and got Cs and seemed less stressed. The better I did and the harder I worked, the more chances I had to have multiple choices in what I did in the future, rather than being stuck with one that maybe I didn’t like.

Of course life outside of high school is way more complicated than that, but even as an adult I recognize situations in which putting forth more effort often means having more options/opportunities available to me.


some obscure reference, this is the way to live:

“Don’t be good. Being good is no fun. Have fun - just be careful.”

Courtesy my great-aunt Essie, who lived well into her 90s and had a blast doing it.

(That branch of my family tree is so large that there may well be someone reading this and thinking “wait, 4 foot 10 and red hair Essie?” In which case, hi!)


Janine janine janine, I’m Team Cindy:

My friend Cindy is the mom I wish I had. Understanding, generous with her time and knowledge, deeply kind. I was going through some issues at an old job and she gave me some advice I use every day.

Don’t make up stories for other people. You can drive yourself up the walls imagining motivations and thoughts for people around you, especially if they’re important to you, but ultimately the best outcomes emerge from waiting and listening.

I struggle with anxiety, so I tend to go down navel-gazing rabbit holes, and this has been one of the most helpful things anyone has told me about interacting with other people.


BeyondThePlatinumDoor, yes:

“If you can smell it before you get to it, don’t eat it.” -best friends Mom.

Get honest in the comments below.

URL: Senior Writer, Jezebel. IRL: Author of the very good book 'LARGER THAN LIFE: A History of Boy Bands from NKOTB to BTS,' out now.

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Um, okay. Mine isn’t a fireworks blowout, but just sort of sad. Friend and I met as freshman roommates, and we remained roommates throughout college. Went to each other’s homes for vacations, etc. Really close friends. After college, friend moved overseas for a job, and I stayed for grad school, but we saw each other whenever we crossed paths and generally kept in frequent touch. She crossed through my town once or twice per year. I spent a couple of years overseas, and she came and stayed with me for an extended trip. Maybe 8 or 9 years later, she came to my town with new fiance. We went out with a group (including me and some of his local friends) for drinks/dinner. All was fine. I didn’t go to her wedding, because it was a destination family thing (or so she said). After that, she rarely got in touch. In fact, I didn’t see her for years. I met my husband to be and got married. They didn’t come to my wedding, although they were invited, but no problem - they already had two little kids and they were still living overseas, so who could blame them. Once, after I had a baby, she came through town and emailed me to get together. She came by the house. Her husband didn’t come. I asked why, and finally she said that he really didn’t like me. I pointed out that I had only met him once, for a drink and dinner, with a large group of people, so he barely knew me, but she explained that he had taken a dislike to me that night. I asked what I had done or said to upset him (it was a pretty innocuous evening, and I’m a very light drinker), and she said I hadn’t done or said anything. He just didn’t get a good vibe. Needless to say, I was pretty bummed out. After that, she still emailed frequently for a while. I was hurt, but I tried to be nice. No point in criticizing a friend’s husband, and you have to understand that we had been really good friends. My husband said to write her off. He pointed out that he is polite even to those few friends of mine that he doesn’t like, and if he weren’t, I would lay down the law. Finally, a couple of years ago, I got an email from her saying that she was in town from overseas. It had been 20 years since I had seen him (on that fateful night), and over 10 years since I had seen her. Turned out that one of her (now 3) kids had gotten very sick in the airport in my town, and had to be hospitalized. He was better, but they were staying in town for a while to make sure all was well. I emailed her back and invited them to stay with us. We have room. She said no, they were staying with husband’s friend. I suggested they come over for an afternoon or evening - we have a big yard, and her kids could play with mine, have dinner, whatever. Family they’re staying with would be welcome to join us. She said no, they’re busy (doing what, exactly?), and maybe we could just talk on the phone since we’re in the same time zone. So we talked. On the phone. While she was approximately a mile from my house. Turns out her kid has a chronic but manageable illness that they discovered in the airport, which must have been super stressful. But it also turns out that they come to my town 2 - 3 times a year, it being a logical stopping point from their overseas locale. They love my town! They love to visit! They have a bunch of friends here! And she has literally not found time to see me in a decade. When I got off the phone, I cried. My husband said, kindly, something to the effect of “it’s time to write her off. He may be an asshole, but she’s also not worth it. You wouldn’t do that to a friend, and you shouldn’t tolerate it from a friend. By the way, she’s not your friend.” And so, that was the end of the so-called friendship. She has emailed me once or twice since then. I haven’t emailed back.