Toxic friendships can be a real drain on your life and your emotions. When it comes to romantic relationships, there are certain expectations and boundaries that can sometimes make it easier to tell if they're unhealthy. But with friendships, how can you know whether someone is actually toxic for you, or just being a bit of a crap friend?
Women who've had toxic friends in the past took to Reddit to share the warning signs. In their experience, here are the signs of a toxic friend.
1. "A simple rule: If they drain me, then they're toxic. A simple question: Do they make me feel safe, or do they make me feel unnerved? If they unnerve me, then they're toxic."
2. "When you know what’s going on their life - problems and all - but they don’t know shit about your own."
3. "If they leave you feeling drained or anxious. If you feel like to have to watch what you say or do in fear of upsetting them. You dread seeing them or talking to them."
Toxic friends can be a drain on your physical and emotional wellbeing
4. "Are you the one doing all the initiating and planning? Is it always you reaching out to them? If you stopped initiating, would you ever hear from them again? If the friendship is very one-sided (with you doing all or most of the work), move on. Real friends will show an interest in you and reciprocate."
5. "They're toxic if they're inconsiderate of your time. I'm not talking 15-20 minutes late, but anything more than that, or flaking out of plans last minute repeatedly. Not worth your time."
"When you can’t be yourself"
6. "If you don’t feel comfortable enough to confide in them, or if you can never get comfortable around them. When you can’t be yourself without treading lightly and pretending for them."
7. "If you think to yourself, 'Is so and so toxic?' Or, 'I don't know if blah is good for me,' then that person is toxic. If you're in a healthy relationship, you don't go around wondering if your relationship is abusive. Usually toxic people are very manipulative and make you feel like the crazy one. So any time you question if a relationship you have is healthy, alarm bells should be going off."
8. "If someone disrespects your boundaries and/or makes you feel insecure/anxious, I would consider that a toxic relationship. You should not feel pressured, or like you're walking on eggshells when with an actual friend. Friends should make you feel comfortable, at the very least."
10. "If they make you feel guilty when you hang out with other people who aren't their friends, if they insult you repeatedly, if they disregard your feelings and important conversations, if you don't feel like you can talk to them about your problems but you're always willing to listen to theirs... if being friends with them is more stressful than fun."
"If you feel like you're walking on eggshells"
11. "If you feel like you're walking on eggshells around them constantly. If you are starting to feel like they are not someone whose actions you can defend."
12. "If they are manipulating you and causing you more negative emotions than positive ones."
13. "Are they trustworthy? If they spend a lot of their time bashing their supposed close friends, know that they will do that exact same thing to you."
14. "They bring nothing but negativity into your life,"
15. "When they consistently prioritise themselves other you/others. If they lie to you."
16. "When they know more about your life than you do theirs. I broke it off with a friend of mine for many months (she's seeing a therapist now and working to fix her toxic behaviour, and apologising to me was part of her recovery process so I'm giving her another chance) because I realised after two years she knew all the intimate details of my personal life and I didn't know shit. Because even when I asked she was vague. She didn't even tell me when she moved."