How To Discreetly Unfriend Someone on Social Media Without Them Knowing

Key takeaways:

  • Unfriending someone on social media can be done discreetly without notifying the person
  • Common reasons for unfriending include offensive posts, safety concerns, and lack of real-life connection
  • Emotions associated with being unfriended range from surprise and sadness to amusement
  • Consider your motivations and attempt to resolve conflicts before unfriending someone

Social media has transformed the way we form and maintain relationships. While these digital connections can be rewarding, there are times when it becomes necessary to unfriend or unfollow someone. Whether it’s due to offensive posts, safety concerns, or simply a lack of real-life connection, knowing how to discreetly remove someone from your social media circle is essential.

Reasons for Unfriending

Before diving into the process of unfriending, it’s important to understand the common reasons behind this decision. Some of the most frequent motivations include:

  • Offensive or polarizing posts, often related to religion or politics
  • Frequent, uninteresting updates that clutter your feed
  • Concerns for physical or emotional safety
  • Lack of real-life connection or familiarity with the person

Emotional Impact of Being Unfriended

Studies have shown that being unfriended on social media can elicit a range of emotional responses, similar to being socially excluded in real life. The most common reactions include:

  • Surprise
  • Sadness
  • Bother
  • Amusement

The intensity of these emotions often depends on the closeness of the relationship at its peak. Being unfriended by a once-close friend tends to be more upsetting than being removed by a mere acquaintance.

How to Unfriend Discreetly

Now that we’ve covered the why, let’s explore the how. The good news is that most social media platforms allow you to unfriend someone without notifying them. Here’s a step-by-step guide for some of the most popular networks:


  1. Open the Facebook app or website and navigate to the person’s profile
  2. Click on the “Friends” button below their profile picture
  3. Select “Unfriend” from the drop-down menu
  4. Confirm your decision by clicking “OK”


  1. Go to the person’s profile on the Instagram app or website
  2. Click the “Following” button
  3. Choose “Unfollow” from the options
  4. If you want to take it a step further, you can also block the person by clicking the three-dot menu on their profile and selecting “Block”


  1. Open the Snapchat app and go to your “Friends” list
  2. Find the person you want to remove and tap and hold on their name
  3. Select “More” from the pop-up menu
  4. Choose “Remove Friend” and confirm your decision


  1. Visit the person’s Twitter profile on the app or website
  2. Click the “Following” button
  3. Select “Unfollow” from the options

Considerations Before Unfriending

While unfriending someone on social media can be a reasonable action, it’s essential to consider your motivations. Ask yourself if your decision is based on a temporary disagreement or a fundamental difference in values and beliefs.

In cases where the relationship has become toxic or unhealthy, distancing yourself might be the best course of action. However, it’s always better to attempt open communication and resolve conflicts or misunderstandings before severing the online connection.


Will the person know if I unfriend them on social media?

No, most social media platforms do not notify users when someone unfriends or unfollows them. However, if the person regularly checks their friend list or follower count, they may notice your absence.

Can I still see someone’s profile after unfriending them?

This depends on the platform and the person’s privacy settings. On Facebook, for example, you may still be able to view their public posts and profile information even after unfriending them.

Is it better to unfriend or block someone?

Blocking someone is a more extreme measure than unfriending, as it completely prevents the person from viewing your profile or contacting you on the platform. Blocking is recommended if you feel harassed or threatened by the individual.

What should I do if someone unfriends me?

If someone unfriends you on social media, try not to jump to conclusions or ruminate on the decision. If the relationship is important to you, consider having an offline conversation to address any issues or misunderstandings.

How can I maintain a positive social media experience?

Being selective with your social media network and setting boundaries can help create a more positive online environment. Regularly review your friend list and consider unfollowing or muting accounts that consistently bring negativity into your feed.