How to retrieve deleted Facebook friends

If you've blocked or deleted old Facebook friends in anger or by accident, reconnecting with them on the social networking site won't be as simple as hitting a button that reverses your decision. You'll need to issue new friend requests to individuals you've previously blocked or "unfriended." These might not be entirely well received if any former contacts got wind of your online slap in the face when you cut digital ties with them.

Log into your Facebook account. Click on the "Padlock" symbol next to your name on the right-hand side of the top navigation bar if you want to unblock an old friend. Then select "How do I stop someone from bothering me?" and click on "View all blocked users." Review the list you're presented with and then hit the "Unblock" button next to the name of the person you want to get back in touch with.

Navigate to the Facebook timeline of the person you want to reconnect with. You'll need to send a new friend request if you blocked or "unfriended" her. You can look for your estranged buddy by tapping her name into the search bar at the top of your Facebook profile. If you don't have any luck, take a look at the timelines of mutual friends to see if you can find the person you're after among their "Friends" lists. Once you've found your old mate, send her a friend request by clicking the link at the top of her timeline. You can't automatically refriend people you've unfriended on Facebook.

Send your old chum an email or a text message if she doesn't respond to your friend request. Although people you block or unfriend on Facebook aren't informed when you remove them from your friends list, you'll be removed from theirs, so there'll be a good chance your old mucker may have put two and two together and got the hump with you. If you don't want to confess to your unfriending, type a message explaining that you can't understand how you lost contact on Facebook. Plead ignorance.

Open a new Facebook profile or use your own personal account if you've been trying to contact your old friend through a group profile or one that's administered by multiple people. Your former buddy may be avoiding your friend requests if she doesn't know they're coming from you directly.


Your ability to send friend requests could be suspended if you regularly send requests that people mark as unwelcome. If people don't want to take you up on your friend requests, you'd do well accept this and move on.

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About the Author

Michael Roennevig has been a journalist since 2003. He has written on politics, the arts, travel and society for publications such as "The Big Issue" and "Which?" Roennevig holds a Bachelor of Arts in journalism from the Surrey Institute and a postgraduate diploma from the National Council for the Training of Journalists at City College, Brighton.