How to Emotionally Detach from Someone

Friends are often made for a lifetime. Some people develop toxic traits that require us to separate from them.

It isn’t easy to cut the chords on a friendship. In some ways, it feels like you’re betraying a part of who you are. We become defined by the company we keep.

When you have trouble letting go, here are the steps you can take to complete the task. 

1. Identify the Reason

You should have a specific reason why it is time to let go. Is that person becoming abusive? Are they always tearing you down or not supporting you? People change as they grow, and that can mean two compatible people become incompatible as time passes.

2. Emotional Release

Releasing the emotions felt about a problematic relationship is an essential part of the healing process. You might cry, start a new activity, or write about how you feel. An outlet that keeps your tension levels low can help you avoid saying regretful words.

3. Be Responsive

Unless you ghost someone (and you shouldn’t), a difficult conversation is always part of leaving a relationship. Some people say things to get a reaction. If you get poked, take a deep breath, and offer a thoughtful response.

4. Start Small

It might help to slowly remove yourself from the relationship a step at a time. You might delete old pictures or messages, gently letting things go while your emotions stay in check. Only take this step if you can remain safe where you are.

5. Stay Abstinent

Sexual contact strengthens personal attachments. It often makes it nearly impossible to leave a relationship. If you’re ready to go, this choice can help you move on. 

Don’t look for an escape. If you’re honest with a friend or intimate partner about how you feel, the results will eventually end up in your favor. These conversations aren’t easy, but they are often necessary.