What Is A Toxic Friendship & When It’s Time To Quit It!
It is no secret that our connections with others are significant. Whether it is the relationship with your family, the love of your life or simply with friends. Having a fulfilling social life can significantly impact our overall health and happiness. It’s important to note that I’m referring to in-person interactions rather than social media connections. Moreover, it is scientifically proven that friends affect us and influence our way of living and habits. Not for nothing, it is said: “show me your friends, and I will tell you who you are”.
On the other hand, relationships can make us vulnerable. We learned from Maslow and Mcland that people want to be socially accepted, so sometimes we let friends affect us in ways that aren’t in our best interests. Exhausting and tricky friendships like these are called toxic friendships. The truth is that the older you get, the more complicated life gets, and time is so precious. Relationships shouldn’t be so complex. If you have one of those challenging friends you’re constantly fighting with, it is time to reevaluate that friendship. Here are signs of toxic friendships you should watch out for.
Everyone, including you and me, has good and bad days. It’s unrealistic to expect someone to be available for us 24/7, especially with everyone dealing with their own problems. However, we should still be able to rely on our friends during essential or problematic situations. For instance, my academic career and future are important to me. However, I rarely discuss it on social media or in conversation. I remember a few cases where I needed help with university work. Still, my “friends” laughed at me instead of receiving assistance and guidance. There were also times when I messaged them with questions, but they didn’t reply. While I don’t expect my friends to be available constantly, it would have been appropriate for them to support me instead of ridiculing me during those times.
2. TRUST ISSUES
One of the essential aspects of friendship is trust. It is crucial in any relationship. If you can’t trust your friend and always have to doubt something, this isn’t good for your friendship and mental health! (Which is super important as well!). Sometimes more minor issues and conflicts can add up over time and will make up for a destructive friendship.
Furthermore, continually doubting leads to anxiety and FOMO (Fear of Missing Something Out). Due to that reason, try to talk about it with your friend. Otherwise, the relationship will end up as a toxic friendship. If you talked about it and there seems to be no solution, consider considering the first aspect. Can you really rely on that friend?
Surround yourself with people who bring out the best in you!
3. THINGS DON’T FEEL EQUAL
Growing up, my parents instilled in me the value of giving and taking in life. They emphasised that it’s essential to never take something without giving in return. However, they also taught me that sometimes people might not be able to reciprocate the same amount of giving as you do. I always keep this in mind, but I believe there should be a balance of giving and taking in a true friendship. Both parties should make an effort to provide emotional and practical support for each other. If your friendship feels one-sided, it’s time to evaluate if you really mean something to your friend. Ultimately, for a friendship to thrive, it should come from both sides.
Competition can be a positive force, as it can motivate and inspire individuals. However, some people struggle with competition and become consumed by jealousy.
Suppose you have a friend who constantly competes with you and is not genuinely happy about your successes. In that case, it may be necessary to reevaluate your friendship. True friends should support and celebrate each other’s achievements. Your own success will not decrease while lifting other people up and celebrating their accomplishments!
5. PEER PRESSURE
It’s important to understand that if your friends don’t accept you for who you are, it’s best to end that friendship. Peer pressure can be harmful, and keeping a toxic friendship is not worth it. Even if your friends criticise you for not liking the same things as them, it’s still a form of peer pressure. Remember that your interests and hobbies don’t define your worth as a person, and you deserve to be accepted for who you are.
Of course, everyone has their own opinions, interests and hobbies. However, if friends start pushing you to like the same things as they do, peer pressure starts. Do not let other people change you just because you want to feel accepted and appreciated. There will be people who love you the way you are!
Considering all these aspects, recognising you’re in a toxic friendship and getting out of it takes a lot of time and strength. It is definitely not an enjoyable journey because losing a partner or a friend always feels like something inside you would break. But from my own experience, I can tell you that you are feeling better afterwards and will definitely have less stress! Sometimes you must have the courage to end a toxic friendship for the better of your own and the other person.
Are you in your twenties and feel like your friend circle is changing drastically? Even though we all wish for the ride or die and the forever friendship, sometimes that’s not the case. Here are reasons why not all friendships will last in your twenties!