Wanting to break off a friendship


I have a friend, who is nosey, lives vicariously through me, and makes judgmental comments. We have nothing in common,except family issues. I have become deeply spiritual, unlike her. She remains a frustrated sensualist. I don't share my personal problems with anyone anymore except my husband, and I rely on God now, not friends. She is a good-hearted person, but makes me anxious as I find her nosiness offensive, because I am a private person. I wanted to write her a letter telling her I can't handle our friendship.



Dear SS,

It is difficult to part ways with a friend because you are no longer able to put up with the friend’s bad behavior. But sometimes, getting some distance from a person is important for your spiritual life.

The qualities you mentioned: nosiness, being judgmental, living vicariously through you, etc are indicative of a very unhappy and probably very lonely person. Do have compassion for her as best as you can.

The main thing you should work on is not withdrawing your feelings of love for and friendship with this person. She may not be able to help what she is doing.

Remember that she is God’s child, too. God is within her! Be kind and pray for her regularly.

However, maintaining these good feelings within your heart does not mean you have to be in her company. You may need to remain friends with her at a distance only.

Yogananda says that we should never let anyone “get your goat” and he added that “goat” means your inner peace – no one should take that away from you!

God often brings people into our lives who test us mightily! And sometimes this is a good thing, for it is how we grow. For those folks, we must be grateful, and yet still use common sense about the company we choose to keep.

If you write her, pray deeply before you do it. Use kind words. Instead of saying: “I can’t handle our friendship,” perhaps it would be better to say something like: “I find I need to take a ‘time out’ from our friendship, at least on an outer level, for a while. But I will hold you in my heart and pray that God will help you find more peace in your life.”