Teens Biggest Dilemma – Why My Best Friend is Avoiding Me?

How to Know If Your Friend Is Avoiding You or Just Busy?

One of the biggest pains in today’s teenager lives is the feeling of being ignored – not by their parents but especially by their friends. Over the years, I have seen several cases where students stop taking interest in any of the lessons or home tasks due to the disruption that happened between their friendship circles. Majority of the times, the teens started to believe that their friend has purposefully deserted them for some nasty reasons. But the question is, how do you know that your friend purposefully trying to get away from you? or they might be temporarily occupied with other responsibilities. In this article, I briefly discuss the reasons and some ways to recognise, without making any judgement, why we sometimes being ignored by our social circle – friends.

Before we are moving any further along, it is essential to know that there are certain situations where being ignored is nothing purposeful or malicious. People get busy and don’t always realise they’re blocking people out. Anna Johnson from Elite Daily believes that in a relationship nothing remains the same forever. There will be times when things will be great and other periods where issues will arise. If you feel like you’re being ignored, then chances are, you’re in one of these valleys.

She provides three levels where you can be shunned off. Source: Elite Daily

  • The slow play. A classic sign of being ignored is the slow play. This is when you send a text message, call your friend or invite them somewhere, and they take an abnormally long time to respond. If you’re genuinely being ignored, you’ll get slow-played multiple times over a short period.
  • The fake response. Sometimes you’ll talk to your friend, and you’ll notice they’re giving vague answers and not making eye contact. This is often coupled with a desire to leave or change environments quickly. When you’re being ignored via fake responses, there’s typically an underlying cause that’s rooted in hurt or angst.
  • The total shun. Finally, there’s the entire shun. This is when you reach out to someone multiple times, and they never get back to you. In the dating world, this is called ghosting.

As I stated above that not always people ignored someone purposefully, sometimes they get busy or bound with specific unavoidable responsibility or circumstances. As we grow up, the amount of activities also increases due to the expansion of our social network. The journey from school to college and then practical life provides many opportunities where we learn and grow mainly from people. Let’s say, you childhood friend who just lives 5 minutes from your home, who usually spent a lot of weekends and free times with you, suddenly been promoted as a head prefect (If you are teen) or got a new job (if you are an adult).

Let’s consider, just because they now only spend an hour a week with you over a home only doesn’t mean they are ignoring you or they don’t care. Take it this way that even surrounded with the strict schedule they still able and want to connect with you. Generally, we can see the difference between being ignored on purpose or due to the situational factors. It is essential to take everything into account before jumping to conclusions.

But still, if you are still feel ignored and the feeling kind of puzzling you and your mind. Here the four ways to respond

  1. Protect Yourself: One relationship expert believes that ‘When someone ignores you, they are not meeting your needs’. But I think that instead of setting up unrealistic goals and expectations, set up some guards and protect yourself. People will change as they grow, and it’s a bitter truth, but you don’t deserve to be taken on an emotional roller coaster for weeks, months or years.
  2. Meet Face to Face: Majority of the times, the issue arises due to non-verbal cues – such as facial expressions, body language and hand motions. If you can, try to get together with your friend for a conversation about the issue.
  3. Avoid Overreacting: As we assume, the most common belief that conjured up in our mind is ‘he/she replace you because they hate you’. This most likely isn’t true, and you need to avoid overreacting. According to Julie Hanks, there are ‘2 types, external and internal, of overreactions, and both are unhealthy. External overreactions are visible responses that others can see (for example, lashing out in anger, throwing your hands up and walking away from a situation). Internal overreactions are emotional responses that remain inside of you that others may or may not be aware of.’
  4. Try to Reach Someone Trustful: If all the above option fails you, then you may have reached another friend or a colleague whom you trust. But proceed with extreme caution when doing so. If you pick someone who only knows your friend, this could cause more severe damage than good. Behavioural expert Neha believes that ‘If and only if the person truly knows you and the other person, should you ask them to step in, ask them to play the messenger and tell them how bad you feel about being ignored by them.

Guys, in the end, all these options are useless if you think that you are of less worth. For you, it’s important how you take yourself than others who just a visitor in our lives. Try to make happy memories with everyone as long as they are in our lives. Memories never faded away if they are true and positive. Even negative one remains in our lives in the form of a lesson to us. My only advise to my students and the people out there, be respectful, don’t burn any bridges and go your own direction. If your “friend” is a true friend, they’ll eventually own up to their mistakes and come back. And if not, there comes a time when you just need to move on and take it as a lifelong lesson.


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