We tend to seek out advice for our romantic relationships way more often than our friendships, and I think it’s funny that we’re willing to put up with certain traits in a friend that we’d never settle for in a partner. To make sure you’re living your best and healthiest life, it’s important to make sure you’re not settling in any unhealthy friendships, too! Which is something I learned majorly in my 20s, as certain friendships faded out.
It can be hard to pinpoint what exactly makes a friendship unhealthy (other than negative energy), so here are 4 things to look out for in a toxic friendship – and then say #byeeeee:
You’re not yourself
Do you feel like you have to hold back or act differently when you’re around a certain friend? There are tons of reasons you might not feel comfortable being yourself – maybe you’re used to acting a certain way to please your friend, or maybe you just don’t feel close enough to really be vulnerable and express your true feelings. I had a friend that I didn’t see eye to eye with on certain topics, and I found myself holding back and tip-toeing around during conversations. Not how I want to feel around besties! Regardless of different viewpoints, you should never feel like you’re walking on thin ice in a friendship.
Every fulfilling and lasting relationship (romantic or not) requires some level of mutual respect. When it comes to emotionally abusive relationships, they can sometimes be super hard to pinpoint. Some signs of emotional abuse include: feeling used, feeling like your friend puts you down a lot, and not feeling like your friend listens to you when you talk (or talks over you). All of these things are unhealthy in any relationship and can have a huge impact on your self esteem over time.
Lack of empathy
Ever had a friend that just doesn’t seem to be able to relate to what’s going on in your life? Even if your friend hasn’t been through what you’re going through, a good friend will be able to listen, and at the very least, be there as a shoulder to cry on. If you have a friend that you avoid talking to about tough situations, or who doesn’t seem to be there for you when you do, it’s definitely a sign of a toxic friendship.
You’re together 24/7
Spending a ton of time together might sound amazing, but in reality it’s not the healthiest thing for a friendship (or any relationship for that matter). If you have a friend that you rely on for every decision you make, and you can’t do anything on your own (or be comfortable alone), it could be a sign of co-dependency. It’s important to not lose yourself in a friendship, and to maintain some sort of independence for your own well-being.
What toxic tendencies have you noticed in friendships?