Navigating Friendship Breakups: How To Breakup With A Friend

In the breaking up process, there's no one right way to do it, but you've got to do it.

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As we grow older, friendships that no longer serve us almost become inevitable. We've all experienced our fair share, we all know a few toxic people. In hindsight, the signs of a toxic friend seems obvious, but sometimes when you're in them, it's not always so clear.

Because I'm a bit older, I always think to Girlfriendsand the dynamic of Toni Childs and Joan. Toni was damn near unbearable to anyone without boundaries, primarily Joan. She would sneak diss, take advantage, and in many cases, completely disregard her friends. As a main character of the show, we rooted for her, but honestly, sis was toxic af. Breaking up with bad friends isn't something that used to be discussed often (which is why Toni was revered a show fave, versus the villain that she could be), but Insecure's recent highlight of the subject between Issa and Molly, has brought the subject to the forefront.

On this week's Happy Hour podcast episode, Amer and Sheriden explored this topic:

When it's time to break away from friendships that no longer serve us, how do we do it? How do we even know when it's time? What happens when that growth has you pulled in different directions?

Press play and tune in as our favorite ladies dive into:

  • Toxic friends
  • Friendships we've outgrown
  • And the subsequent friendship breakups that they lead to

Have you ever had to break up with a friend?

Amer and Sheriden are accepting voice notes! Click here to send them a 1-2 minute question for your chance to receive on-air advice directly from them! Also, be sure to subscribe and listen on Spotify and Apple Podcasts.


Navigating Friendship Breakups Show Notes:


Clubhouse App (invite-only exclusive new app in the beta stages that has a bunch of super-influencers and celebrity "think tank")

Michael B. Jordan has a new boo (allegedly)! And she's a certain *cough* hue *cough*

Shonda Rhimes isn't with the shade, ABC. #kanyeshrug

Birkin Bags and Saweetie: why is this an indicator of a good boyfriend?

Quincy Brown had a moment, y'all.

Happy Hour:

We open the show by playing a voice note from xoListener, AJ: Breaking up with friends...how?

Tweet: @shesguru


Sheriden: It's normal to outgrow people. It can be difficult if you don't have tools to communicate it. We have the conversation around relationships, and not necessarily friendships. Currently dealing with this issue.

Amer: You're friends with people at certain stages. It's up to knowing how to navigate the journey. It's never easy, but each situation is it's own case. Set boundaries, and choose yourself.

What do you do when the friendship breakup is no one's fault?

Do we implement boundaries more in relationships vs. friendships?

You aren't going to allow the same things you did when you were younger.

We all can be the toxic friend at some point, it's your duty to realize you're being a shit friend.

Tips for breaking up with friends:

  • Assess your feelings, validate them
  • Have a conversation with that friend, seeing how they respond
  • Assess that response
  • Make a decision

Types of friends:

  • Jealous
  • The one-uppers
  • Weird "complimenters"
  • Insecure a.k.a those who perceive that you're competing...when you're not.

Sis, stop saying, and being, that girl that says "I don't have many girlfriends." *eye roll*

Is it a necessity for you to call someone a friend?

You have to be a friend to have a friend. *poetry snaps*

Is it easier to break up in a romantic relationship than a friendship?

What lessons have you learned from leaving a friendship that you've outgrown?

Resources Mentioned In This Episode:

Clubhouse App









Bustle's "Issa Rae Has More To Do"

People Mentioned In This Episode:

Meek Mill



Joe Rogan

Joe Budden

Beyonce Of Marketing

Michael "Bae" Jordan

Jamie Foxx

The Beckhams

Shonda Rhimes



Quincy Brown

Frida Kahlo

Melinda Gates

Issa Rae


Feature image by Shutterstock

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When I was ten, my Sunday school teacher put on a brief performance in class that included some of the boys standing in front of the classroom while she stood in front of them holding a heart shaped box of chocolate. One by one, she tells each boy to come and bite a piece of candy and then place the remainder back into the box. After the last boy, she gave the box of now mangled chocolate over to the other Sunday school teacher — who happened to be her real husband — who made a comically puzzled face. She told us that the lesson to be gleaned from this was that if you give your heart away to too many people, once you find “the one,” that your heart would be too damaged. The lesson wasn’t explicitly about sex but the implication was clearly present.

That memory came back to me after a flier went viral last week, advertising an abstinence event titled The Close Your Legs Tour with the specific target demo of teen girls came across my Twitter timeline. The event was met with derision online. Writer, artist, and professor Ashon Crawley said: “We have to refuse shame. it is not yours to hold. legs open or not.” Writer and theologian Candice Marie Benbow said on her Twitter: “Any event where 12-17-year-old girls are being told to ‘keep their legs closed’ is a space where purity culture is being reinforced.”

“Purity culture,” as Benbow referenced, is a culture that teaches primarily girls and women that their value is to be found in their ability to stay chaste and “pure”–as in, non-sexual–for both God and their future husbands.

I grew up in an explicitly evangelical house and church, where I was taught virginity was the best gift a girl can hold on to until she got married. I fortunately never wore a purity ring or had a ceremony where I promised my father I wouldn’t have pre-marital sex. I certainly never even thought of having my hymen examined and the certificate handed over to my father on my wedding day as “proof” that I kept my promise. But the culture was always present. A few years after that chocolate-flavored indoctrination, I was introduced to the fabled car anecdote. “Boys don’t like girls who have been test-driven,” as it goes.

And I believed it for a long time. That to be loved and to be desired by men, it was only right for me to deny myself my own basic human desires, in the hopes of one day meeting a man that would fill all of my fantasies — romantically and sexually. Even if it meant denying my queerness, or even if it meant ignoring how being the only Black and fat girl in a predominantly white Christian space often had me watch all the white girls have their first boyfriends while I didn’t. Something they don’t tell you about purity culture – and that it took me years to learn and unlearn myself – is that there are bodies that are deemed inherently sinful and vulgar. That purity is about the desire to see girls and women shrink themselves, make themselves meek for men.

Purity culture isn’t unlike rape culture which tells young girls in so many ways that their worth can only be found through their bodies. Whether it be through promiscuity or chastity, young girls are instructed on what to do with their bodies before they’ve had time to figure themselves out, separate from a patriarchal lens. That their needs are secondary to that of the men and boys in their lives.

It took me a while —after leaving the church and unlearning the toxic ideals around purity culture rooted in anti-Blackness, fatphobia, heteropatriarchy, and queerphobia — to embrace my body, my sexuality, and my queerness as something that was not only not sinful or dirty, but actually in line with the vision God has over my life. Our bodies don't stop being our temples depending on who we do or who we don’t let in, and our worth isn’t dependent on the width of our legs at any given point.

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