How to stop a toxic friendship
It’s hard. It’s painful. It might even be devastating. But c’est la vie people! Everyone has been or will be through a toxic friendship at some point in their lives. From my experience and research, a toxic friendship is unsupportive, exhausting, unfulfilling, domineering, rambling, and often unequal.
So I came up with some techniques for handling the biggest vampires of your life without losing your senses:
- Set limits — clearly. Be committed, be loving, be there. But be clear on what you can and can’t do. Remind yourself of these limits before you pick up the phone. Good friends will understand. Plus – your behavior will give them a manual on how to behave, too.
- Find the silver lining with empathy. It’s important not to just nod along without saying a single word to contradict your friend when she’s being relentlessly negative. Accept and embrace their way of thinking and try to give them a wakeup call. It might work, they might change.
- Speak up. You can’t expect anyone to read your mind. Be honest, say what you like and what you hate. When you put up with sloppy, selfish behavior without opening your mouth, you’re communicating that you’re only worthy of being trampled on. You can’t have great friendships if you don’t expect them and ask for them.
- Say Adios or Arrivederci. Even if you ask for what you want, though, sometimes you might not get it. This fills you up with injustice, irritation, and soreness – in other words, toxicity. This is when you have to keep your distance, or just leave the scene. The relationship might continue in the future or it might remain a memory. It will always be an experience, though. After all, it is our experiences that shape us. Appreciate them, for you wouldn’t be the person you are without them.