Recently, I had to come to grips with the fact that the once 13-year friendship/sisterhood between a childhood friend and me is no longer existent. There’s a bitter tension stemming from only God knows where and why. I first noticed the separation when we went to different colleges.

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Admittedly, I was one busy bee in undergrad. In addition to all the step shows, Greek parties and games that come along with HBCU life, I also had an internship every year, worked a part-time job, was initiated into my Sorority and senior year I reigned as the University queen. My days were full and it definitely took away from the time that I could chat for hours with old friends. But like all of my other friends, who too were in college, I just expected her to understand undergrad life. Whenever we did get around to conversing, I thought we’d be able to just pick up where we left off, like close girlfriends do. And for a while we did, but not for long.

I began noticing that she wasn’t as chipper sounding as my other friends when I expressed any good news. One year on Christmas break, I called all my girls to let them in on my birthday plans and all responded–except her. She never showed up to celebrate either. When I landed my current job, those in my close circle were sure to call or text their congrats–except her. I’d send out mass texts every time an article of mine was published. I would always get a response from everybody–except her.

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A few months ago, I sent her a random text just to say hey and ask how she’d been. It was my way of letting her know that all was cool on my end. She responded—the next day—with a casual “I’m good” or something to that effect. I replied to say, I was happy she was doing well and that I loved her. No response. I still wanted to make excuses for her behavior; my heart wouldn’t let me believe our friendship had died, not yet. The last two visits home I invited all of my hometown friends out. We all met, caught up on the new, laughed about the old, and sipped cocktails—but not her.

I’ve known her for a very long time, long enough to know her strengths and flaws. I’m all too familiar with her occasional envious nature, and I’ve seen her carry grudges from high school into college, and then into adulthood, over childish matters. But never would she be that way with me, so I thought–we were way better than that.

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After she ignored my most recent text, I was forced to see it for what it was. I thought about calling and asking her why she let our friendship die, but I decided not to. Maybe it’s pride, but she’s the person with the unidentified issue–I feel she should reach out to me and express it. In my heart–I know–just as she does, there’s no legitimate explanation other than issues of her own that she has to sort out by herself.

If this sounds familiar, you may want to stop and evaluate your friendships. Observe patterns and don’t think that just because you’re a good friend that you’ll forever be exempt from your girl or boy’s shady ways.

A few general indicators that you may need to let go:

• You always initiate the communication.

• He/she doesn’t congratulate your accomplishments, even the big ones.

• Is he/she one to hold grudges over minor matters?

• He/she only reaches out when they need something.

• You feel like you have to dim your personality to make him/her feel comfortable.

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