Aleteia logoAleteia logo
Saturday 23 January |
Saint of the Day: St. Marianne Cope
home iconLifestyle
line break icon

How to overcome the loss of friendship


fizkes | shutterstock

Edifa - published on 07/15/20

Losing a friend for any reason can be painful.

Some friendships end in great disappointment…. A child who feels betrayed by his or her playmates; a mother whose unmarried friends gradually abandon her; a single guy whose friends appear to forget him as they get busy with family and career. Like heartbreak, the end of a friendship can make us truly suffer.

Helping ourselves and our kids

Friendship can both frustrate us as well as push us to better know ourselves. What we offer in friendship must be precious for it to thrive. Each time we’re tested in a friendship, we must ask ourselves what our ideal of friendship is. Each time we feel disenchanted or hurt by a friend, we should recall what truly counts and avoid judging those friends too harshly, as they may also need time to grow.

A child or a teen can experience the rupture of a friendship as a great crisis, like an emotional desert. It is our duty as parents to help them populate that desert with angels and saints. Our creativity in this domain can only be enhanced by prayer.

Friendship is not a prison; it always allows the other person the freedom to stay or to go. It’s sometimes hard to make our children accept this. At the very least they must realize that a friend is not something they own, like a toy or any other object. The joy of having friends is greater than many others, but we can’t possess them.

When friendship transforms into ministry and mercy

Many years after we’ve  moved on – to another life, a different city or a country — we may be overtaken by a feeling of nostalgia for “these friends of yore.” But we must firmly believe that the best is still to come and that the friends we left behind have prepared us for new encounters. So, the prayer we recite can be for the friends we’ll make tomorrow. One day, when we become old, our friendship will transform into ministry and mercy. We will learn how to accept that while some friends have been disappointing, they have also guided us along our path to God.  

Vincent de Mello


Read more:
12 Truths about making lasting friendships from St. John Henry Newman

Support Aleteia!

If you’re reading this article, it’s thanks to the generosity of people like you, who have made Aleteia possible.

Here are some numbers:

  • 20 million users around the world read every month
  • Aleteia is published every day in eight languages: English, French, Arabic, Italian, Spanish, Portuguese, Polish, and Slovenian
  • Each month, readers view more than 50 million pages
  • Nearly 4 million people follow Aleteia on social media
  • Each month, we publish 2,450 articles and around 40 videos
  • We have 60 full time staff and approximately 400 collaborators (writers, translators, photographers, etc.)

As you can imagine, these numbers represent a lot of work. We need you.

Support Aleteia with as little as $1. It only takes a minute. Thank you!

Daily prayer
And today we celebrate...

Top 10
Zoe Romanowsky
20-year-old filmmaker wins award for powerful 1-minute film about...
Cerith Gardiner
Meet the dad who's teaching basic skills on YouTube for kids with...
Philip Kosloski
What are the corporal works of mercy?
Jorge Graña
Did you know Martin Luther King appreciated the Rosary?
Cerith Gardiner
Quarterback Philip Rivers' retirement announcement reflects his s...
Philip Kosloski
What are the spiritual works of mercy?
Anna Gębalska-Berekets
Couple praises Padre Pio's recipe for a happy marriage
See More