We have control of our lives, and that control is based on the simplest decisions we make everyday. We do not notice that we have so much power in our hands to deliver our own happiness. The saying “tell me who you’re with and I’ll tell you who you are,” tends to be true, even if we don’t want to see it for ourselves.
The people we decide to surround ourselves with can influence our happiness. Most of the times our long term friendships can blind us from ugly truths we choose to ignore. No one wants to believe their friends are not good, even though they may be.
To elaborate, here are 5 types of toxic or unhealthy friends you surely have had in your life at least once.
The Freeloader Friend
It all starts with your friend’s sudden amnesia.
“I forgot my wallet.” “I left my purse in the car.” “I don’t know where my credit card is, can you pay this time?”
Only that it will not only be this time, every time afterwards. It’s okay if we want to help a friend in need, but when your friend is not in need, he or she is taking advantage of you. If this person has some sort of economical rough patch, it’s understandable. You can even try to do things together that don’t require money. However, don’t let it become into a habit. When your friend starts asking you to buy shoes on sale at the mall; it’s gone too far. Being a good friend does not mean being his savings account.
The Two-Faced Friend
This is a common one. Friends are supposed to tell each other everything, but they are not 100 percent honest all the time. This type of friend will lie to our face in order to not hurt our feelings. Some would see it as an act of true friendship, but is it really? Yes, they are protecting you, but no, they are not helping you. Honest friends are the most valuable of friends because they are so few of them. Constantly hearing that you always look good, that you can get any girl, that you did nothing wrong, that your santa sweater is so hot; these are things that don’t help you learn.
A research study done by the Journal of Early Adolescence proves that “the influence that friends exert over one another as teenagers is clearly powerful.” A good friend will tell you that you don’t look so good that day because no one “wakes up like that,” every day. A true friend tells you the things you did wrong and the things you can do right.
That’s the key to real friendship – honesty.
The Needy Friend
We all have had that friend that is there when you wake up. And when you are having lunch. And when you are taking a nap. And when you are doing homework. And tells you goodnight when you go to sleep. Probably because that person is lying right next to you.
Creepiness aside, there are friends that simply don’t understand boundaries, even if we set them in stone. It’s always fun to hang out with your best friend, but you can’t be with them 24/7. How do you know your friend is being too needy? When he lets himself in your house, after you said you were busy, calls you 20 times to know where you are, and gets extremely mad when you cancel your plans.
Being together is essential, but so is respecting each other’s space and privacy.
The Critical Friend
The type of friend will tell you the truth all the time, but instead of being constructive criticism, it will be targeted to hurt you or embarrass you.
Your friend uses honesty as an excuse to tell you the negative things that you do.
“You shouldn’t be so sensible, it doesn’t suit you.” “Why do you always talk like that? It’s weird.” “You smell terrible, do you ever shower?”
One thing is being straightforward, another thing is being a jerk.
Intentions are very important when we speak our mind. If your friend goes out of their way to purposely hurt your feelings, or makes you feel uncomfortable in front of other people, then that is no friend of yours. No matter if your friend says “kidding” at the end of every insult. Most jokes stop being funny with time.
The Unreliable Friend
A needy friend will blow your phone up with text messages, the unreliable friend will ghost you for a week and will ignore you on purpose.
When you have an unreliable friend, you have to understand that you can’t really count on that person for anything. That friend can ask to meet you at a place and not show up at all. However, that same person will show up out of nowhere to ask for your help, and once you do, they vanish into thin air. The anthem of friendship is obviously Friends TV show theme song: “…I’ll be there for you, ‘cause you’re there for me too,” and if your friend can’t follow those eleven words, that is no real friendship. Find friends you can always count on.
We are usually blinded by friends that are no good. The people we surround ourselves with define us, so tell that toxic friend what bothers you about your friendship, and if he or she doesn’t care about your concerns, then walk away.
It’s better being alone than having unhealthy company.