What Are the Signs That Someone Doesn’t Want to Be Your Friend?

breaking up with your friend

Verywell / Laura Porter

Table of Contents
View All
Table of Contents

Because humans are largely social creatures, it's natural to crave companionship and the company of others.

While making and keeping friends is a vital part of your social and everyday life, after a certain age it can get a little difficult to find like-minded people who are willing to share their joys, fears, happiness, and worries with you.

This may explain why finding someone who appears to have a genuine interest in spending leisurely time with you can sometimes cause excessive excitement. This excitement can in certain, unintended ways, blind you toward someone's real intentions when relating with you.

If you've met someone new, or have an existing companion who you consider a friend, there are times where you may be unsure if they look at you the same way.

To help you identify real friends from mere acquaintances, we'll be sharing tips on what to look out for.

How to Know If Someone Doesn't Want To Be Your Friend

You Always Reach Out First

While there's no denying that our daily lives can get very busy, it may be a warning sign where you find that you are constantly having to make the first move with a supposed friend, whether it is with phone alls, texts, or emails.

Think about who is initiating the conversation. When you add things up and find that nine out of 10 (or all 10) times contact is established, the effort was made by you, the other person may not consider you as their friend.

They Do Not Respond Enthusiastically When You Contact Them

In another strike, a person could send signs that they are uninterested in a personal relationship with you consider the responses they give during your interactions.

Where this happens, you may find that they give one-word responses to questions, or lack any real enthusiasm when they hear from you. This is usually compounded by the fact that you most likely made the move to touch base first.

Not that someone has to metaphorically jump for joy when they hear from you, but friendship is a two-way street. If someone always sounds like they'd rather be doing something else, this is a sign they may not be very interested in a friendship.

They Tend to Be Polite But Measured When Talking With You

You can tell that a person has very little interest in being more than an acquaintance by examining how they speak to you.

While a friend might use relaxed language, share a few jokes, or otherwise interact in a light-hearted manner, a person that doesn't consider you their friend may sound more official or formal, giving clipped responses when you meet up with them in person or otherwise engage them in conversation.

They Avoid Meeting Up or Tend to Cancel Plans

An unfortunately hurtful way to identify someone that is uninterested in friendship is how little you get to see them.

After taking the pains to invite them for drinks, a gallery opening, to check out your apartment, or another occasion, there always tends to be an excuse explaining why they will be unable to attend on the specified day.

In even worse cases, they may agree to meet up with you only to cancel on the day of through any number of means of postponement.

You Put in More Effort Than They Do

Calling to check-in, arranging meetings, sending gifts, popping by to make sure their house plant is watered, and similar behaviors are easy ways to show that you care for a person.

If you find that you are routinely putting in more effort in the friendship, or performing very imbalanced acts of love for your supposed companion, this could mean that they view your interactions as something other, and usually less than a friendship.

They Do Not Engage With You on Social Media

While this may not always indicate that a person doesn't want you as a friend, taking note of your social media engagements with them could paint a clearer picture of the true state of your relationship.

If they do not acknowledge your stories or posts, or perhaps even make an effort to ignore comments you make on their social media, this could mean that they do not want to be seen with you within that space.

Social media shunning may seem trivial, but it can be a valid way to determine how a person really feels about you.

Note that not everyone uses social media in the same way, so don't assume that someone isn't your friend if they are less open or communicative on Facebook or Instagram.

They Only Talk About Their Interests

There are special cases where a person may tick many of the minor boxes that make up a friend: responding to calls, agreeing to meetings, checking in from time to time, but depending on the topics that your interactions cover, you may be able to tell whether or not they truly view you as a true friend.

When you find it hard to contribute anything to the conversation because your acquaintance goes on and on about their accomplishments, how they spent their week, what projects they are finding difficult, etc, this could be telling that they merely view you as a soundboard, and care less for what may be happening in your life.

A friend would want to listen to how you have been coping, any exciting projects you have been working on, they might even tease you about your love life, but you will always feel like it is an interaction and not a therapy session, where you have to play the role of silent listener.

A Word From Verywell

There are many reasons why friendship is such a valued part of our society. A real friend is there for you in the good times, and will provide a helping hand through less than rosy periods. This is why care has to be taken when selecting people to be part of your inner circle.

When a person doesn't count you as a friend, you may tell through their words and actions, as well as the effect their nonchalant attitude may have on your wellbeing. Just as you cannot expect to be friends with everyone, not everyone is going to be friends with you. That's why it's important to read the signs and pull back from people who do not want to be friends, rather than spend time trying to force something that isn't there.

While accepting that you may not be a person's cup of tea can be painful, it can also serve as an opportunity to appreciate the loved ones ready to stick with you through thick and thin. Keeping your chin up and moving past the disappointment may be hard, but it will leave you better off in the long run.

By Elizabeth Plumptre
Elizabeth is a freelance health and wellness writer. She helps brands craft factual, yet relatable content that resonates with diverse audiences.