It’s completely normal to feel disappointed in your friends every once in a while. Nobody is perfect, after all, and it’s unfair of us to expect anything otherwise. However, it becomes highly tedious when the disappointment becomes constant.
Don’t worry, though. There are a lot of things that you can do to deal with this properly. With this article, you’ll also figure out when to tolerate and when to ultimately let go. It’s not an easy thing to do, but you ultimately need to look out for yourself. Just be sure to be prepared. You may need to make some tough decisions when they’re necessary.
How To Deal With Being Disappointed In Friends
These are the things that you can do if you’ve been feeling disappointed in your friends lately. These will help you deal with disappointments and also improve your perspective on certain things that involve your friends.
Properly manage your expectations
One of the first things you can start doing from now on to deal with disappointments is to manage your expectations. It’s highly possible that you’re disappointed in friends mainly because you expect so much from them.
It’s okay to expect good things from your friends. After all, friends are supposed to have each other’s backs. However, you should also know to limit your expectations of them. Stop expecting them to give you the world. If your expectations are so high, of course, you’ll feel constantly disappointed.
The best thing you can do is to simply know that they’ll be there for you. People have flaws and imperfections. Don’t expect them to be perfect human beings.
Be more understanding
Aside from knowing how to manage your expectations, you should also try to be more understanding from now on. If a friend disappoints you in one way or another, there may be a reason on their part. For example, if you’ve been asking for a favor from a friend and they’ve failed to deliver, they may have a genuine reason as to why they can’t comply with the favor.
As long as you can still tolerate it, be sure to be more understanding from now on. This advice goes perfectly hand in hand with managing your expectations. If you can do both, you may be able to avoid feeling disappointed.
Of course, this is just for minor, although recurring disappointments. If the reason why you’re disappointed is something majorly consequential, you may have to reconsider your options. We’ll get to this in more detail later on.
Let them know how their actions are affecting you
If you’ve already been understanding and have managed your expectations, yet a friend is still continuing to disappoint you, you can always talk to them about it. Communication is key when it comes to these things. Just let them know how their actions have affected you. At best, they’ll appreciate your honesty and they’ll work on ways to improve.
This may also put the friendship at risk since you also have a chance of offending them. However, this is way better than simply keeping things as it is. If they’re truly your friend, they’ll understand where you’re coming from rather than being completely upset with you.
Don’t be afraid of being honest here. It’s what’s best for your friendship. This honesty may heal the friendship or it will break it. Either way, the outcome will be what’s also ultimately best for you.
Make sure the friendship is balanced
The best friendships are the ones that are completely balanced. Every relationship, including friendships, should be a two-way street. You help them, they help you, you support them, they support you.
Disappointments can happen when the friendship isn’t balanced. If you’re the only one who’s doing the helping and supporting while you’re friend barely reciprocates, this creates a problem.
You can remedy this by going back to the previous point. Talk to them about it. Once again, communication is key. Let them know that you’re hurt they’re not reciprocating and that it’s making you feel as if they don’t care about the friendship anymore.
Talk to your mutual friends
Talk to your mutual friends and ask if the friend who’s constantly disappointing you also disappoints them. If that particular friend also disappoints your other friends, then the problem lies with them. It may be their personality, choices, or lack thereof.
However, if you’re the only one who feels disappointed by that friend, there could be two reasons for this. One, you expect too much of them. If you feel disappointed in a friend while your other friends don’t feel that at all, you may only be disappointing yourself because of how high your expectations are.
On the other hand, it could also be because that friend can’t be bothered to not disappoint you specifically. They treat their other friends properly, but they can’t do the same with you. If this is indeed the case, it may be time to rethink the trajectory of your friendship with them.
See their positives
One thing that will help you see your friendship with the person who’s been disappointing you in a more positive light is to see their positives. Remind yourself why you became friends in the first place. Your recent disappointments may have made you only see the negative aspects. This then made you forget that they indeed are a good friend who just happens to disappoint you every once in a while.
Remember that everybody can disappoint you. It’s natural for us to make mistakes. If you keep focusing on the mistakes and imperfections of the other person, when they do have fantastic traits, you’ll end up wasting a possibly good and long-running friendship.
Don’t take things too personally
Don’t always take things too personally. If you’re someone who always finds offense in a lot of things and always takes things personally, feeling disappointment is only an extension of that.
For example, don’t take it personally when a friend can’t attend a dinner date with you because they have work commitments. Don’t take it personally when a friend can’t give you a gift during a special occasion when they’re struggling financially.
Being understanding can also help you with this. As long as you’re understanding and you don’t always take things personally, you’ll avoid feeling disappointed, especially when there’s no reason to.
Don’t let the actions of others affect your view of socializing
One of the worst outcomes that can arise from this is you might end up getting turned off by socializing. A friend may have already disappointed you way too much and way too often that you’re now afraid of making new friends.
Be sure you don’t fall for this trap. Yes, there are some people who will disappoint you. Some people are malicious, disrespectful, and insensitive. However, if you completely turn yourself away from socializing, you’ll also miss out on meeting people who are incredible, kind, sweet, and highly caring.
As much as there are people out there who don’t mean well, there are also a lot of them who do. Make sure you don’t shut yourself off from socializing just because a few bad apples exist.
Give them a chance to make it up to you
If you truly believe that your friend is good and that they’ve simply fallen off the wagon as of late, give them a chance. Talk to them and allow them to make things up to you. You’ll also need to be patient too. Don’t expect them to make it up to you immediately. If they see you as a true friend, they will make it up to you when the time is right.
You shouldn’t be quick to let go of a friend when you can still give them a chance. Assess this properly. If there’s someone who knows how good that friend can be, it’s you. If you believe they truly deserve another chance, don’t hesitate to give them one.
However, if things still don’t change, then the next step may be necessary.
Be prepared to let go
When you’ve considered and done everything above and nothing still works, your next best step may be to let go of that friend. At the end of the day, you’ll need to look after yourself. You’ll need to do things that are best for you. If staying in that friendship no longer brings you happiness, despite giving it a chance time and time again, you may need to let it go already.
When To Let Go Of A Friend
If you’re still hesitant on whether or not you should let your friend go, the points below should help you make up your mind. If the following rings true for you, you’ll need to let go of that friend as soon as you can, as painful as that may be.
When they’ve hurt you more than they’ve helped you
If a friend has hurt you more than they’ve actually done good things for you, then it’s time to reconsider the friendship. A friendship should feel good. It should be organic and satisfying.
It’s true that no friendship is perfect. It can also have its rocky and questionable moments. However, if the bad times outweigh the good times significantly, the best course of action for you to take is to let go of that friendship. Continuing to stay in that hurtful friendship will only dampen your social confidence, and worse, your mental health.
When they overstep your boundaries time and time again
Everybody needs to have boundaries. No matter how close you get with someone, your boundary is something no one should cross, not until you allow them to.
If a friend constantly oversteps your boundaries for whatever reason, that’s not a good sign. When a person disregards your limits and is insensitive to them, that’s because they don’t care enough about you to respect your boundaries. If this is indeed true for you and the friend that constantly disappoints you, you’ll need to let go of them as soon as possible.
When nothing changes after you’ve voiced your opinions
When your attempt to communicate with them falls on deaf ears, it’s time to let go. This either means they don’t care enough about you to pay attention to your pleas or they simply don’t care enough about you to respect them.
Either way, they don’t care enough about you.
You don’t want to be stuck in a friendship with someone who sees you like this. It’s better if you focus on your other friends who do respect you. They’re the ones deserving of your time, care, and attention.
When the disappointment goes beyond minor mistakes
It’s okay to tolerate minor mistakes. It’s even almost expected given how prone we humans are to making mistakes. However, if you’re disappointed in friends because they constantly do major mistakes, it’s time to reconsider that friendship.
An example of a minor mistake is when someone forgets to attend a meeting that you set, or when someone accidentally breaks something you own. Minor mistakes can be disappointing, but they’re ultimately harmless.
Major mistakes, on the other hand, are ones that bring you emotional and physical pain. If a friend does something that’s truly hurtful, not once, not twice, but time and time again, you need to let go.
When they don’t seem to respect you anymore
Finally, you need to let go of a friend when they just don’t seem to respect you anymore. If they constantly push you around, belittle you, or hurt you in any way, there’s no reason for you to keep being friends with them.
As mentioned above, you need to look after yourself. You’ll only end up hurting yourself further if you stay in a friendship with someone who doesn’t respect you.
Being disappointed in friends is something most of us experience. However, not all mistakes weigh the same. A lot of mistakes can be incredibly hurtful and harmful. When the level of disappointment reaches a point where it actually already hurts you, it’s time to move on.
This can be very difficult, but it needs to be done. After all, you can still make new friends who will surely treat you the same way you properly treat friends. Leave bad friendships, and nourish or make new good ones. As long as you can keep things like this, you’ll feel less disappointed in friends and feel more content with your social life.