Knowing how to unfriend someone on Facebook can help keep your friends list to the people you want to interact with.
The great thing is that Facebook won’t send a notification to the person telling them you unfriended them. This means it will be up to that person to realize on their own that they’ve been unfriended. However, sooner or later, they will likely figure it out.
We explain more about this below. Before you unfriend on Facebook, it’s important to consider other options. There are other ways to not interact with Facebook friends you have.
First, here’s how to unfriend on Facebook.
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How to unfriend someone on Facebook
It’s important to know, once you click “unfriend,” that’s it. You are no longer Facebook friends. If you change your mind, you will need to send them a Friend Request.
- Log into Facebook.
- Using the search bar on top, type in the person’s name you want to unfriend.
- Look below the large cover photo, to the right. You will see three dots. Just to the left of that is a Friend icon. When you hover over it, it will say you are “Friends.”
- Click on it. You will see:
- See First
- Edit Friend List
- Click Unfriend
In five easy steps, you will have unfriended on Facebook.
When you unfriend people on Facebook, you are making a statement that you don’t want to be their virtual friend anymore.
How to unfriend someone on Facebook without them knowing
There’s no way to unfriend someone on Facebook without them knowing. They may realize it soon after you do it, or it may weeks, months or years.
However, you have no idea when they will find out. They may find out the same day you did it. Alternatively, they may never find out. It depends on your relationship outside of Facebook — in real life — as well as how often you interacted with each other on Facebook.
There are several factors to consider. It depends on many things, such as:
How often did you interact on Facebook:
Are they used to interacting with you on Facebook? Would they typically see your posts or your Likes and Comments on Mutual Friends’ posts?
How active they are on Facebook:
Someone who goes on Facebook multiple times a day may notice you unfriended them sooner than someone who isn’t on Facebook a lot.
A less active user may use Facebook a few times a week or month. They will be less likely to notice they were unfriended.
Whether they have a reason to think of you:
Did you have a falling out? Is there a reason this person would look you up to see if you are still Facebook friends? Will you see this person in real life?
Basically, think about if this person has a reason to be thinking of you. Would you be on their mind? Would they look you up to see if you unfriended them?
How many Mutual Friends you have:
If you want to unfriend someone with whom you have several Mutual Friends, that person will likely find out sooner than if you had zero friends in common.
If you have a one-off friend here and there, they may not ever realize it. However, if you have 20 mutual friends with someone — especially people who actively post and engage with each other on Facebook — this person will be more apt to realize you unfriended them.
How many Facebook friends they have:
The more Facebook friends someone has, the less likely they may be to notice you unfriended them. A person with hundreds of Facebook friends will be less likely to know you unfriended them than someone who has a smaller circle of Facebook friends.
How Facebook savvy they are:
The more the person you unfriended knows about Facebook, the more likely they may notice you unfriended them.
As an example, if the person you unfriended on Facebook does a search for your name and doesn’t see it show up in the search, he or she may think you deactivated your Facebook account.
However, what this person may not know is they can go into their Friends List and search for your name. If your name does not appear in the Friends List, you aren’t Facebook friends. They’ll know you unfriended them.
If someone simply deactivated their Facebook account, you will know if you are still friends because in your Friend List you will see their name. When you click on their name, it will say: This account has been deactivated. Only you can see (person’s name) on your Friends List. This means they weren’t unfriended.
It’s important to note, just because there’s no way to unfriend someone on Facebook without them knowing doesn’t mean they will know. It might take years for them to find out.
Facebook doesn’t notify people they’ve been unfriended
Thank you, Facebook! We can be grateful Facebook doesn’t notify people they’ve been unfriended.
This is good news for the person who chose to unfriend someone. Unfriending someone is certainly making a statement on it’s own. The person you unfriended will likely find out at some point. There’s no need for them to know exactly when you did it and be alerted to it.
It’s also good for the person who was unfriended. It may help them save face. None of us wants to log onto Facebook and get a notification we were unfriended. Being unfriended is hurtful. It’s unpleasant. We are left feeling angry, questioning, embarrassed, and left to wonder: Why did she unfriend me?
Facebook spares people the unpleasant news that someone unfriended them. Truly, we should all be grateful for this. For all Facebook does to let you know about Every Little Thing with all of the Notifications, and the way Facebook puts many things front and center for us to see, it graciously spares us this bad news.
Therefore, because Facebook doesn’t notify people they’ve been unfriended, oftentimes, people think the person won’t ever find out. They might find out or they might not. You won’t ever know.
What happens when you unfriend someone on Facebook
When you unfriend someone on Facebook, you are no longer Facebook friends. This means, you won’t see their posts in your newsfeed. They won’t see your posts either. If you have Mutual Friends in common on Facebook, you will still see each other’s likes and comments on other people’s posts.
When you unfriend someone, you can still Like a comment they made on someone else’s post. (However, you probably won’t want to give them the satisfaction.)
You will still be able to search them and see their page. Depending on their privacy settings, you will see more or less. At the very least, you will see their cover photo, their profile picture, and mutual friends in common.
If the person you unfriended blocks you
If this person decided to block you because they were upset you unfriended them, then you won’t be able to see their page or any likes and comments on Mutual Friend’s post. You won’t see their name anywhere on Facebook.
How to politely unfriend someone on Facebook
There is no way to learn how to politely unfriend someone on Facebook. This is why it’s important to think of the reasons why you want to unfriend. Unless there is a safety issue or something big happened to justify it, you may want to consider other options.
Not only might you want to think about this person’s feelings, you’ll want to consider any backlash you may get for unfriending them. There may be consequences for you when you unfriend someone.
Who is this person you want to unfriend? Will it be bad for you if you unfriend them? Is this person you want to unfriend someone you will have to deal with in real life?
There may be people you want to unfriend because they annoy you. This is common. If someone brags on Facebook all the time, or uses Facebook for politics, it can be annoying. Perhaps you have a Facebook friend that brings you down for some reason.
There are many reasons for wanting to unfriend someone, and it’s nice to want to be polite about it. However, a way to be polite without unfriending is to use the unfollow option. When you unfollow someone, you won’t see their posts unless you click on their name and go to their page.
The downside to this is you will still see them on Facebook if you have Mutual Friends. You will see if they liked and commented on any of their posts. This person will also be able to interact with you and your posts.
Unfriending isn’t usually polite
Unfollowing is more polite than ending your Facebook relationship. It nets almost the same result: You don’t have to see their posts unless you choose to. At the same time, you are keeping the peace by remaining polite Facebook friends. You can choose whether or not to interact… on your terms.
When deciding whether to unfriend or to unfollow on Facebook, if you’re concerned with being polite, it’s better to unfollow instead of unfriend.
When you unfriend, you are making a statement that you don’t want a even virtual relationship with them. It’s hard to be polite about that.
If there is a safety reason, you may need to learn how to block someone on Facebook.
Is it rude to unfriend someone on Facebook?
It depends. It is sometimes rude to unfriend someone on Facebook but it really depends on the circumstance. Who is this person you want to unfriend? Do you know them well? Why do you want to unfriend them?
If you are unfriending them “just because,” then yes, it can be considered rude. If you unfriend someone for a power play, it’s also rude.
However, if this person did something which negatively affected you or your family, or if you barely know them, then it isn’t rude.
It’s important to remember, people have different reasons for being on Facebook. Some people want lots of Facebook friends. Some people don’t.
Along the same lines, some people use the Unfriend button freely, not giving much thought to whether it’s rude or polite.
Some people use Facebook to keep in touch with people they don’t see. Other people unfriend people they won’t ever see and keep it to their current social circle. It really all depends on the person.
Facebook is your space to interact with whomever you want to. If there are people among your Facebook friends that you don’t like, you can unfriend them. However, it’s important to consider the consequences for you. There may be ramifications from unfriending someone.
Therefore, for some Facebook friends, it may be easiest to just keep them around. They are virtual friends so it doesn’t really matter. Interact with them or don’t, it’s up to you.
If you know you don’t want to interact with them again because of something that happened, then it’s not rude to unfriend them.
How can you tell if you’ve been unfriended on Facebook
It’s easy to tell if you’ve been unfriended on Facebook.
Look up the person’s name in the search bar on top. You will see a list of people with that name come up. On top should be the person you know.
When you see “Friends” under this person’s name:
This means you are still friends and haven’t been unfriended.
If it doesn’t say Friends, look to the right of their name:
When there is a chat icon, you are still Facebook friends.
If there is an icon with a person and a + sign, you have the option to Add Friend. This means you’ve been unfriended on Facebook. It can also mean you were never Facebook friends. You can also click on the person’s name and go to their Facebook page. Their Facebook page will come up. Underneath the big cover photo, to the right, you will see either:
An icon with a message in it:
This means you are still Facebook friends.
A box that says: Add Friend
This means you aren’t Facebook friends. This means either they unfriended you or you unfriended them. Or it can mean you were never Facebook friends.
Who unfriended me on Facebook
It’s natural to wonder who unfriended you on Facebook. It’s hard to remember all of our Facebook friends.
It often happens that you realize you haven’t seen posts from so and so for awhile. You look up that person’s name, and you see you aren’t Facebook friends. But you know you were at one time. This starts the cycle of wondering and checking the last time you interacted with this person on Facebook. And on it goes.
You will likely be inclined to see what you can on this person’s wall — if they haven’t blocked you. You’ll also likely see if you have any Mutual Friends. All of these reactions are natural when someone unfriends you.
There are ways to find out who unfriended you on Facebook. The easiest way is to look at your list of Facebook friends. How many friends do you have? Remember that number. Then, copy and paste a list of your Facebook friends into a document so that you can alphabetize them. You may want to do this in Google Sheets or Excel. The next time you notice your number of Facebook friends drop, you can copy and paste the new list in a row next to your original list of names. From there you can compare who unfriended you.
We don’t recommend doing this. Try hard not to look at how many Facebook friends you have. You can drive yourself crazy keeping track of this. Instead of worrying and obsessing about who unfriended you on Facebook, focus on the Facebook friends you do have.
See related: Someone unfriending you on Facebook: Now what?
Reasons to unfriend on Facebook
Safety is the biggest concern with Facebook. If there is any reason someone on Facebook doesn’t make you feel safe, you should unfriend them. You may need to block them as well. That’s why it’s important to know how to unfriend someone on Facebook.
Other than safety reasons, there are often social slights and other issues people have which leads them to unfriend someone.
Oftentimes there are annoying people among our Facebook friends. These people may brag about their seemingly perfect lives or just annoy you for whatever reason.
Rather than unfriending them — which sends a big statement and can cause issues for you — you may want to unfollow them instead.
It’s important to remember, once you unfriend someone, you aren’t Facebook friends anymore. If you change your mind, you will have to send them a new Friend Request. How to send a friend request on Facebook
This person may or may not accept it: Someone not accepting Friend Request on Facebook
How to unfriend on Facebook
When you end a Facebook relationship, you are making a statement. You are declaring: I don’t want to be Facebook friends with you anymore. If it’s for a safety reason, absolutely unfriend someone. You may need to block this person as well.
However, for regular situations with regular Facebook friends, there are things to consider before deciding to unfriend. Will there be consequences for you?
Considerations about unfriending
If the person you want to unfriend is someone you will see in your real life and not virtual life, think about it how this might affect you. The person you unfriend may decide to block you. Do you want that? If you have a lot of Mutual Friends in common, this can cause issues. Again, unless there is a safety issue, be sure to consider the options before pressing Unfriend.
Many times people are surprised to see they have been unfriended. It often hurts and confuses the other person. They may not know why you unfriended them. They can feel rejected, hurt, angry, and obsess about it. These are natural feelings to have when someone is unfriended.
There’s no real way to be polite about unfriending someone. Many people will think it’s rude to unfriend someone, especially if there isn’t a specific reason for unfriending. Each circumstance is different. It’s hard to say whether it’s rude to unfriend.
There’s no way to know how to unfriend someone without them knowing. They may notice right away if they look you up. It depends on how frequently the person goes on Facebook, and if there is any reason they would think to look up your name. If you have lots of Mutual Friends on Facebook, there is a greater likelihood they will notice you unfriended them.
It’s great that Facebook does not notify people they were unfriended. Because of this, some people won’t ever know you unfriended them.
It’s important to know how to unfriend someone on Facebook. It’s easy to click the unfriend button when we’re upset. However, sometimes it’s good to take a day before unfriending to be sure it’s best for the long-term.
(Thanks to Morning Brew for the awesome Unfriend image!)
Want to learn more about Facebook? See: