Many people know that when I was 12, I lost my mom to a terrible car accident. It was an event that changed my life in ways that I’ve probably yet to discover still. After that happened, I moved to a new state which meant leaving every friend I’d ever known behind in my hometown. It was a lot for me to take in as a young girl. I was dealing with a tragedy, dealing with acclimating to my new family and surroundings, and dreading the upcoming school year where I’d be dealing with making new friends. By September of that year, I started 7th grade and I was the new girl with the dead mom. After that wore off, I started to make friends as most children do. That year, I met one of my best friends who is still my best friend today. As years zoomed by and I changed schools, towns, jobs, and life paths; I’ve made and lost and grown apart from many people. During that time, I’ve had toxic friends that I’ve had to let go of and, through those relationships, I’ve learned why it is so important to cut toxic friends off for good.
A toxic friend is a person that literally drains you. They take, take, take and when they do give, they don’t miss a single opportunity to remind you of it. Toxic friends get off on making you feel bad about not being good enough in some aspect and are constantly using the terms “real friends”, which drives me insane. For me, I’ve had a couple toxic friends in my life that made me feel shitty. I should have cut them off directly and forwardly but found myself avoiding them instead. Learn from my mistakes and understand the 5 reasons you should cut off that toxic friend.
- They are bringing out the worst in you– I don’t believe that anyone can make you into someone that you are not, of course. You either are that person or you aren’t. However, there are people that can bring out or highlight parts of your personality that you typically try to keep in check. For me, it was the catty, mean girl in me that I really don’t like. I had a friend that literally shit talked everyone in her life whether it was her mom or her boss, all of them got it. After a while, I found myself on the phone with her for hours cosigning and shit talking people I didn’t even know well enough to shit talk. That mean girl bitch that I try to keep buried deep inside was emerging and I hated it. I felt gross afterwards like who am I and why am I judging other people that I don’t even know.
- They make you feel bad (about everything)– Being honest with a friend is paramount in a friendship, of course. However, a friend that makes you feel bad when you do anything that they don’t like is not a good friend. They will try to mask it as being there for you but truly, a good friend should support you even if they don’t agree with your choices. They shouldn’t judge and berate you because you’re doing whatever you think is right.
- They are there when you fall and gone when you’re up– This is something I learned in the last few months. A toxic friend will practically sprint to your side when your life is in turmoil. They will wipe your tears, pat your back, and tell you that it’s going to be ok. However, when the clouds part and the sun finally comes out, their support and love will dry right up. Anyone that is there for you when you are down but no where to be found during your success is suspect. You get laid off from your job and she is there for you but you have an interview at a new, better job and she doesn’t even reply to your text to say good luck; that’s an issue.
- Cut you down because they are insecure– This one right here is golden, honestly. I had a very toxic friend that would not only cut me down, but she would cut down her other friends to me so severely. At first I thought that they, and myself, must be terrible people. But, as time went on, I learned that she was terribly insecure about herself, her life, and her choices. It is not normal, at all, for the regular everyday choices of your friends to impact you to the point of insanity. She would judge her “friends” based on how they wanted to spend their money, who they slept with, how they raised their children; anything you can think of. In the end, she was comparing it to her own life and if her version wasn’t as good in her own opinion, she need to cut down the other person.
Toxic friendships linger because of longevity or some small glimmer of hope that the person will change. Don’t waste your time. Cut that damn toxic friend off and let them go be great elsewhere, without you.