Ways to Know Your Friendship is Toxic
True friends are the family we choose. They play an important role in our lives.
But sometimes, we hang on to toxic friends simply because we’ve known them for so long that we feel an obligation to stay their friend.
If you are using Tapping Therapy to heal from past trauma or get a handle on your stress or anxiety, you may be undermining your efforts by keeping toxic friends in your life. To improve your well-being and metal health, toxic friends must be removed from your life once and for all.
Here are some ways to know if your friendship is toxic.
How to Know Your Friendship is Toxic: Warning Signs of a Toxic Friend
Recognizing that you are involved in toxic friendship is the first step toward freeing yourself of these undesirable relationships. Here are a few signs and ways to know your friendship is toxic:
- They are jealous. Healthy competition is normal, but it should raise a red flag once it turns into jealousy. If you notice signs of aggressive competition or attempts to diminish your accomplishments, you may be involved in a toxic friendship.
- They make you feel insecure. If you notice that you are feeling bad, drained, or lose self-confidence after talking to your friend, it might signal that it is time to take a step back from this friendship.
- They give you a sense of dread. If you notice a notification from your friend, and, somewhere in the gut, you feel that pin of dread, something is wrong. Ask yourself where this feeling is coming from and whether it’s time to cut the toxic people out of your life.
- They won’t stop criticizing you. When a friend is constantly criticizing and judging you, your self-esteem will inevitably suffer. You don’t need to have that person in your life if they constantly point out your flaws and belittle you.
- You have to be careful around them. Do you always have to watch what you say and do around your friends? Good friends value each other’s thoughts and emotions, and you should not be walking on eggshells around your friends. Instead, you should feel comfortable to express yourself.
- They only talk about themselves. Friendships are not only about taking; they also involve giving. If your friend receives all the support they need from you and never talks about your needs, it is time to say goodbye.
- They are drama queens. Of course, life has its ups and downs, but if your friend seems to enjoy drama and exaggerate every little thing, it may be a cause for concern.
- They are energy vampires. Healthy relationships should make you feel emotionally fulfilled, and not drained. If all the relationship brings to you is stress and anxiety, it may be time to terminate it.
- They try to change you. If your friend just won’t stop offering advice on your outfits, eye shadow, or dating profile, eventually, you will start feeling as if you are not good enough. You don’t need someone in your life who never supports you.
- You can’t trust them. Trust is key to any healthy relationship. But if you feel like you can’t share private information with your friend, are they really your friend? You know the answer.
Types of Toxic Friends
Look around and think of all the people you consider to be your friends. Now, think carefully about your relationship with them and how it makes you feel. After you spend a lot of time together, do you feel guilty, drained, stressed, anxious, or not worthy enough?
One of the ways to know if your friendship is toxic is to see if this friend falls under one of the following categories of toxic friends:
1. The Taker
Friendships, like any other relationship, are about give and take. The Taker hasn’t gotten this memo. You dread seeing this friend because they’re constantly wanting something and giving nothing in return – even if it’s just their time.
They may bail for an important event or when they promise to help you with something. They’re not afraid to ask you for favors. This is the type of friend who conveniently shows up for dinner, offering nothing for the table and leaving after their last bite. You may not see them again until they need something else.
No one should be a doormat. You deserve to have friends that value you and want to help you just as much as you help them. Eventually, you will resent this friend and drain yourself of your valuable energy.
2. The Negative Nelly
Not everyone can be a bright ball of sunshine all of the time – that would be unhealthy. But it’s equally unhealthy to be bad all of the time.
The Negative Nelly rains on their own parade and everyone else’s.
They just can’t see the light at the end of the tunnel. Every day is a bad day.
Everything is the end of the world. You offer solutions to their problems, and they present more problems. They doubt you and they doubt themselves.
You may try to avoid spending time with this friend because their negative energy is contagious. This person may not mean to be negative. Past trauma may be keeping them from seeing the positivity in life.
If a Negative Nelly friend recognizes this issue and wants to get help, you may choose to stick around to offer your support. This may be a situation where Tapping for stress or Tapping for anxiety can help this friend heal and start seeing things in a different light.
3. The Jealous Monster
We all get a little jealous from time to time. It’s a natural human emotion. But The Jealous Monster is always envious of everything. They’re never happy for you – not genuinely.
Your friend may outright tell you that they’re jealous, or they may just belittle your achievements because they just can’t get past their own envy. You may not want to share your little victories with this friend because you’re afraid they will taint it or feel hurt by your achievements.
How do you know if your friendship is toxic? Real friends will celebrate your wins and support you through your losses.
4. The Ego Maniac
Ego Maniacs are easy to spot. When something good happens in their lives, they make sure that everyone knows it. They’ll remind you of their accomplishments – several times. They expect you to praise them, too.
This friend needs constant validation because they are insecure and have very little self-confidence. They rely on other people’s attention and validation to get through the day.
Having to be a constant source of one person’s self-esteem can be emotionally draining and put a damper on your own self-confidence.
5. The Competitor
It’s normal to have a little friendly competition with friends, but The Competitor takes it a step too far. This friend’s problems are always worse than yours. Their achievements are always better than yours.
Their constant one-upping behavior can hurt your own self-esteem and leave you feeling like you are worth less in their eyes. This behavior, like jealousy and egotism, is caused by low self-esteem and lack of self-confidence.
It’s Time to Let Go of Toxic Relationships
These five types of friends may be doing more harm than good to your emotional health. Take an inventory of what they bring to the table and take from your life. It may be time to know if your friendship is toxic and let some of them go.