Would you consider yourself a “toxic” friend?
Of course not, none of us would. But, it can be extremely difficult to evaluate ourselves anyway, so how would we even know if we were toxic?
Let’s try something. Read the questions below and give yourself some honest answers. It’s not a test and I certainly am not qualified to judge, but it could help to distinguish what a toxic friendship might look like.
- Your friend finds out they got accepted into college in another state while you didn’t because you sent in your applications too late. What will your response be? Are you excited for them? Or do you instead spend the entire time talking about how your life is going to suck because all your friends are going off to school and you aren’t?
- You invite your friends out to dinner to celebrate a job promotion. When a friend buys you a drink it makes you feel good. After that drink, do you spend the rest of the night buying your own drinks or do you insist that your friends continue to congratulate you with free alcohol?
- A friend tells you something in confidence. It’s a secret that has been eating them alive for some time, but they didn’t know who to tell. They finally feel confident enough to let someone know and that someone is you. What do you do with that secret? Do you take it all in and never breathe a word of it? Or, unable to believe what you heard, do you run to someone else to give them the scoop?
I think you can figure out what a toxic friend would have done in these situations. The question is: what would you have done?
Don’t use the questions above to condemn yourself. If you admit you have done something similar or you have your own personal story about something you aren’t proud of, it’s OK. The bottom line is that coming clean is good.
Every single one of us at some point is going to do something we aren’t proud of. Sometimes we royally screw up and continually end up making the same mistakes over and over again. There usually comes a time when we have to face the repercussions of our actions.
Part of growing is learning from our mistakes and making behavioral changes that would prevent similar mistakes. No one wants a friend who mooches off of them or is constantly being a drag. They don’t want someone who lies or can’t keep their secrets private. They wouldn’t want to be around someone who makes them feel inadequate when they share their accomplishments or hurts their feelings to make them feel better.
So it’s time to flush out all that toxicity. Just let it go, so you can become the best friend you can possibly be!
How have you dealt if you’ve been the toxic friend? Leave your tips below!