Peter Molokwu: Outgrowing Friendships is a Part of Life… Embrace It!

In the last 3 months, I’ve lost a couple of friends. When I say ‘lost’, I don’t mean death, I mean not being able to be in contact with them or talk to them like we normally would. I have been trying to understand and accept the fact that life happens.

I am an Ambivert, which technically means I’m in-between being a socially confident person and very quiet and for some funny reasons, the thought of making new friends scares the hell out of me. I mean, who even has time to meet new friends or even catch up with old ones in this Lagos when it’s either you are going to work early to beat traffic or you’re stuck in third mainland traffic.

I’ve had my own share of good friendship gone bad and bitter and I honestly don’t want to use this post to apportion blames on any party. Shit happens.

I was speaking to a friend some time ago and she said something that got me thinking. She said: “There’s nothing like ‘losing friends’, rather, it’s more like changing your circle and people you associate with. As you grow, you’ll notice that your mindset changes and how you see the world, and social interactions, changes.”

I’ve come to the full acceptance that losing friends does not make me a bad friend, neither does it mean it was any of our faults. The friendship died a slow death. But one thing I am aware of is growth – I still love and cherish you but life happens. Some friends come into your life only for a short period of time.

Each of these friends has served a purpose in your life, just like you did in theirs. You gain and learn from each other as much as you can. But sooner or later, priorities might shift and with more experience in life, you realize what you want from friends – and these friends don’t offer it.

The important part of losing friends is acceptance. You should know that it is normal to lose friendships. Learn your lessons, maybe help each other become different people and move on. You don’t need to stay cordial with everyone you ever met in your life.

Losing a friend can be just as hurtful as breaking up with a partner or even more so. On the brighter side, think of it as a lesson. As the poet, Nikita Gill says, “from these lessons you learn how to choose the people you love better”.

The friends that are temporary in your life are just as important as your ‘permanent’ friends. They teach you to value those who will stay so much more. And every happy memory, whether or not you lose the person you shared it with, is as valuable as diamonds are.

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