What Is a Toxic Friend Like?

Reviewed on 6/3/2021

Toxic friendships can do a lot of damage and ultimately destroy our self-esteem. Toxic friends are pessimistic, inspire unhappiness, make you feel guilty, anger easily and are not trustworthy.
Toxic friendships can do a lot of damage and ultimately destroy our self-esteem. Toxic friends are pessimistic, inspire unhappiness, make you feel guilty, anger easily and are not trustworthy.

Toxic friendships can do a lot of damage and ultimately destroy our self-esteem. There are fights and misunderstandings in every relationship. However, some people just don't do us any good in the long run. Here are some signs that suggest that you are in a toxic friendship.

They’re pessimistic about everything.

  • You find yourself keeping good news from them because they somehow always manage to make you feel undeserving of whatever good fortune comes your way or they minimize your good news.

You are never happy around them.

  • It is one thing to be sad, or even depressed, from a broken heart, but to have someone drain all your positive energy just from being with them is not a beneficial situation to be in.

You’re tired of being the only one trying.

  • Every time you make plans, they cancel on you or give you poor excuses for not showing up. True friends value and respect your time and look forward to seeing you. You go out of the way to help them, but they will not help you

They make you feel guilty.

  • Toxic people always look for faults in others and never in themselves. At the same time, they consistently make us feel guilty about everything.
  • When they are in a bad mood, we show consideration and automatically think that we did something wrong. Therefore, we run after that person to apologize.
  • Their extremes magically attract us, but their mood swings are not suitable in the long run. Such people only use us to make themselves feel good.
  • This type of toxic friendship brings only negative things to us.

There is a lack of trust.

  • Doubting a friend’s trustworthiness is a clear sign that your relationship isn’t as strong as it could be. Of course, feeling betrayed by a friend (such as learning they’ve been gossiping about you or sharing your personal details) will affect how much you trust them.
  • However, some smaller issues and conflicts can add up over time and make for a destructive friendship.
  • Feeling like a friend isn’t listening to or respecting your needs or having to repeatedly ask them to do something important to you (return your calls, tidy up after themselves and pay you back) can chip away at your trust and affect what you’re actually getting out of your friendship.

They get mad at you easily.

  • Toxic friends seem to always find something to get angry about and pull an argument out of thin air. It is simply because they cannot work out simple problems in a mature manner.

They only call or ask to hang out when they need something.

  • When a friend only reaches out because they need something, maybe they need to borrow something or maybe they need someone to vent to, then this is a big sign that the friendship is one-sided and can leave you feeling exhausted, drained and irritable.
  • Furthermore, you might notice that your efforts are not returned and these friends may be less available when you are in need.

Summary

  • Toxic friends may act possessive, jealous and controlling, which is not a good sign of a healthy relationship.
  • Toxic people have this uncanny superpower to connect dots (when there are none) and manipulate any conversation back to them. If you never get a chance to speak up, it’s not an equal friendship.
  • Your intent to snap out of it is just a start, but cutting ties completely could feel like a nightmarish ordeal.
  • A suggestion might be to take a break from such a friendship rather than leading with the idea of cutting ties completely. Taking two to six months off from a friendship might give both of you some breathing space to re-evaluate what you want. If, after that period, the toxic dynamics persist, you will find more strength to end the relationship. However, if you choose to end your toxic friendship, it will probably be difficult.
  • However, know that it’s for the best in the end and that your life will be better without it. You can then focus on the friends that are good for you and will have time in your life to welcome new ones.
  • Removing even just one source of negativity can make a huge impact and filling that space with positive influences will make it easier not to look back.

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References
Medscape Medical Reference

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