Identifying a Toxic Friend
I have some trust issues. I don't let people get too close too fast. I have a lot of friends and I can count my best friends, the ones I trust unconditionally, on one hand and even with them I tend to be pretty open about some things but I don't share everything.
What could cause trust issues in an otherwise fully functional and emotionally stable adult? How about a hard lesson that not everyone you call a friend is a friend to you. I have had fake and toxic friends. I've actually had 3 in my life and each one hurt. They would make me feel we were very close until they tried to hook up with my boyfriend. Or I though I could trust them until they suddenly started to talk about me behind my back. Most fake or toxic friends are a result of jealousy, insecurity and unhappiness.
People may want to be your friend and they may want to see you do well, but not better than them. They want you to be happy but not happier than them. A true friend wants the best for you and it has nothing to do with what they want for themselves. That's the only thing that makes sense to me as to why so many women have these friends that betray them in some way.
I've had fake and toxic friends. I saw warning signs I ignored until it was too late. It left me confused, hurt and with even more trust issues. Here are the things I wish that I had paid attention to. Things I wish I had asked myself to avoid a lot of drama, heartache and pain.
Here is how to identify a Toxic "Friend"
-Do they talk poorly about their other friends to you? Have you felt like maybe they were talking about you to others?
-Do they reveal to you things they were told in confidence? Deep down do you trust that you can tell them things and it doesn't go anywhere else?
-When you have had a disagreement can they agree to disagree? Do they try to change your mind? Do they intentionally bring up and remind you of differences and disagreements?
-Do they give you your moment? When something good happens do they let you enjoy it? Are they happy for you? Do they congratulate you? Or do they seem to compete, upstage you or downplay what is making you happy?
-Do they do for you what they expect you to do for them? Or is the relationship one sided?
-Do they force themselves into your other relationships? Do they try to be friends with your other friends? Do you feel like they get jealous or try to make you jealous?
-Do they try to divide you and your other friends? Do they plant seeds of mistrust? Do you ever feel like they are trying to manipulate or control you?
-Have you caught them lying? It doesn't matter what about. A liar is a liar always.
-How are they when they are drinking? How about when they are mad? Alcohol and anger are two of the easiest ways to see a persons true nature.
-If they hurt you or upset you are they sorry? Do they take responsibility? Do they apologize? Or do they ignore it? Do they try to convince you you don't have a right or reason to be hurt?
-Are people warning you about them? Do the people you trust think something is off?
If you can detect a toxic friend early they will do less damage to you overall. And a toxic friend is damaging. They will make you question your own judgement and your other relationships. The truth is that betrayal is hard because it can't be done by an enemy, only a friend. In fact if you are already questioning a friendship it means trust is already broken and there is probably a very good reason for that that you are trying to ignore. When someone shows you who they are believe them. Avoiding toxic people and ending relationships with fake friends early on can save you a lot of emotional distress. It's not easy. In fact with all 3 of my fake friends it was hard to see and hard to accept until their actions hurt me to the point beyond repair. But with so many good people in the world you don't have time nor do you need the bad.
I can now say that of the people I consider friends they are all good, caring and kind people. It took a really hurtful relationship to make me look at the others and appreciate them even more but the end result is I am surrounding myself with positive people and love and I plan to give the same back to my friends because they are true and deserve it. We all deserve it. Everyone should have at least one, true friend who you never have to doubt. I am so proud to say I have more than one. And I hope you don't learn about fake friends from first hand experience as I did but if you do, know those people are the minority and if nothing else you can learn about the type of person you never want to be.