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A Toxic Friend: Signs He or She Is Using and Abusing You

I have experience in dealing with and ending a toxic friendship. It's definitely not easy, but it's important for your own self-respect.

Does your friend ignore your emotions and make you feel bad about yourself? Learn how to get out of a toxic relationship.

Does your friend ignore your emotions and make you feel bad about yourself? Learn how to get out of a toxic relationship.

What Is a Toxic Friend?

Toxic friendships are negative relationships that make you feel unhappy, unhealthy, and unequal.

Toxic friends will stress you out, use you, and wear you down physically and mentally. Many of us keep toxic friends in our lives for whatever reasons. We both like and dislike our toxic friends. We put up with all they give us repeatedly. We complain to ourselves, other friends, relatives, and whomever else will listen to us gripe about how they do this and that to us.

How You Can Become Trapped

But we never do anything about it. This lack of decision becomes a bigger problem than the toxic friend. We don't tell our friend that his or her behaviour causes us to feel a certain way. We wait until our negative feelings and emotions build up, and before long, we find ourselves exhibiting toxic traits as well. We become the best actors in the world and act as if nothing is wrong, hoping our friend will change or grow up. But the fact about such people is that they don't know how to, or if they do, they just don't want to. After all, if being manipulative works for them, and they get what they want out of life, why should they change?

Sometimes, you work up the nerve to tell the friend how he or she makes you feel, but every time you mention it, your point doesn't get through. Or he or she might try to turn the tables on you by saying you're the one with the problem.

This guide will help you recognize warning signs of a toxic friendship, how to go about confronting them about the abuse, and how you can change the nature of your relationship going forward.

Signs of an Emotionally Abusive Friendship

Here are some warning signs that your friendship with someone might be toxic. Keep in mind, however, that just because your relationship with a friend may exhibit some of these below characteristics does not necessarily mean that your friendship is irredeemably broken and unhealthy.

  • They get mad at you over small things and ignore you.
  • You're walking on eggshells all the time.
  • There's an imbalance in "talk time."
  • You're the only one who initiates talking and hanging out.
  • You don't equally share details about your life with each other.
  • They are inconsiderate about your time and energy.
  • They only call you when they have a problem or need something from you.
  • They do not respect your boundaries.
  • They talk trash behind your back.
  • They try to control what you do and how you feel.
  • They're constantly negative and criticize you in a non-constructive way.
  • You're overly competitive with each other (and possibly other friends too).
  • They don't get along with any other important people in your life.
  • You dread talking to and hanging out with them.
  • They drain your energy and leave you feeling depleted.

They get mad at you over small things and ignore you.

This is a pretty common aspect of a lot of friendships, but that doesn't make it healthy or fair. Sure, on some level, the idea of "small things" is relative to each person's values and focuses, and it's not necessarily wrong or bad for your friend to get upset at certain actions or words that they consider to be offensive, even if others don't think they're all that important. And yet, that friend also can't just get mad at every little thing you do and expect you to keep all of that in mind and totally change who you are just to meet their needs.

This behaviour is also often combined with periods of that friend ignoring you. This approach is commonly referred to as "the silent treatment" and can become a form of abuse.

But if every little thing you do sets them off—to the point where they frequently resort to ignoring you as a means of punishing you or teaching you a lesson—then why even bother being friends in the first place? At that point, the compatibility seems pretty minimal. You might be just relying on history or routine to carry a friendship that may have already run its course.

You're walking on eggshells all the time.

This is related to the above sign but can be a bit more complicated. Many people have their really complex mix of traumas, insecurities, and other elements that make certain subjects a bit more touchy than others. That's totally OK. Being sensitive to certain things is no shame.

But if you feel like no matter what you talk about or what you do, and no matter how careful and considerate you are, everything seems to set your friend off into a spiral of defensiveness, that might be something else entirely. It's tough to form bonds and be vulnerable with each other if you're always scared of sending them into a breakdown with even the most innocuous of words or acts.

There's an imbalance in "talk time."

If you find yourself forever on the "listening" side of your relationship, but rarely feel listened to, that's a problem. Naturally, the listening-to-talking ratio between two people is never going to be perfectly 50-50, and it doesn't need to be.

Though if you feel like you're always there to lend an ear to them but never seem to receive the same support, you should definitely consider bringing up that one-sidedness with your friend. It's entirely possible that person just loves to talk and can get a bit carried away sometimes. Maybe they just need a little reminder to take a break and listen every now and then. But if they get super defensive and act as if you're attacking them, that's definitely not a good sign.

You're the only one who initiates talking and hanging out.

To be fair, some people are very busy or just aren't very good at setting up plans, relying on others to initiate conversations and meet-ups. That isn't necessarily terrible. Even so, constantly relying on others to put themselves out there and kickstart every interaction places an unfair burden on the initiators. It can make them feel overly needy and pathetic.

Although there are many factors that go into this and everyone is on some level just trying to figure things out as they go along, if your friend is really a friend, they should want to talk and hang out with you. And at least some of the time, they should be the one to make that clear without needing to be prodded into doing so.

You don't equally share details about your life with each other.

One of the best parts about having a great friend is knowing that someone out there really gets you. You can be your real self around them and they'll still love you. That kind of bond can help people get through even the toughest of times, and it's a big part of why friendships are so powerful and necessary. But if you don't ever really share the details of your life with someone—from the random minutia of your day to your deepest secrets and vulnerabilities—then it's not so easy for those super important connections to form.

The news of your life, both good and bad, should be shared with your friend. It's a significant part of what makes them one in the first place. But if you never share those details—and perhaps more importantly, if neither of you really ever asks about them—then what connections are left tying you two together?

Real friends don't dominate every conversation, but instead ask questions about how each other are doing and make sure to actually listen.

Real friends don't dominate every conversation, but instead ask questions about how each other are doing and make sure to actually listen.

They are inconsiderate about your time and energy.

With so much to think about and do and experience, who has the time or energy to waste on a friend who doesn't respect that? That doesn't mean you should be constantly seeking to extract perfect efficiency from your friendships or demand that every moment you spend together is some huge, majestic adventure worthy of a five-film series. It just means that if your friend really cares about you, then they should value what little time and energy you have while on this planet.

If they are habitually late to the point that you can't even remotely count how many hours you've spent just waiting for them to show up, that's not good. If they routinely bail on plans that you set up together—even when they know how much some of those events mean to you—that's not good. And if when you try to bring up the subject of their inconsideration about these things, they then try to shame you and act like it's no big deal no matter how many times it happens, that's really not good.

That doesn't mean that your friendship can't be built in large part on plenty of moments of you two just hanging out together, not doing much, but loving it all the same. Quite the opposite. But it does mean that both parties should have a healthy respect for each other's time and energy, so that there's not an imbalance wherein one person is frequently in limbo, waiting on their friend, wondering what they could have been doing instead.

They only call you when they have a problem or need something from you.

Someone who only talks to you when they need something isn't so much a friend as an opportunistic businessman. Of course, friends should totally help each other out all the time, and there's no shame in asking for it. But if your friend only wants to talk with or be around you when they need to extract your labor or skill, then how is your relationship any different from that of business-customer? And what does that say about what they actually value about you?

A friend should want to talk to you. They should want to hang out with you. It shouldn't always require you performing some service for them for your presence to matter and be wanted.

They do not respect your boundaries.

Respecting your boundaries should be a bottom line requirement for even the most peripheral of acquaintances in your life. And if your friend can't rise up to meet the same bar that you hold for people you barely know, then your relationship needs some serious reevaluating.

Good friends don't repeatedly encourage bad decisions that could ruin your life. They don't ignore your wishes and intentionally do things that they know deeply upset you. What good friends should do is respect your boundaries and, in the interest of your ongoing health and growth as a person, help you to maintain them.

Now, if you haven't fully and clearly communicated those boundaries, then some of the blame for their violation could potentially fall on you. But if you've gone through the trouble of laying out your boundaries to them—ideally, multiple times—then anyone who continues to violate them likely isn't a very good friend.

They talk trash behind your back.

To some extent, it's almost inevitable that people will occasionally talk about other friends when they're not there. A little gossip or venting can be a healthy thing in moderation. It's only when it enters into a kind of relentless and mean-spirited tearing down of a person when they're not even there to defend themselves that it might point to something more toxic.

If you're frequently hearing about a friend saying cruel or slanderous things about you when you're not around, it might be time to consider if they're your friend at all. After all, what kind of friend consistently tries to bring down the people they supposedly care about?

They try to control what you do and how you feel.

Control issues are a red flag for people that you should generally avoid in any part of your life. It can be particularly pernicious if that controlling person is your good friend, however, because you're more likely to want to please them and go along with whatever they want you to do or feel—often at the expense of your quality of life.

Be especially wary of a friend that wants you to think and feel the exact same way as they do about someone or something. A true friend would want you to come to your own conclusions and feelings about an issue and seek to hear your honest thoughts about a situation. If your friend constantly tries to correct what you're doing or feeling or thinking, then they're not allowing you to be your own person. This can have severely detrimental effects to both of your lives and should not be allowed to continue.

They're constantly negative and criticize you in a non-constructive way.

Even the most indomitable of spirits can find it hard to foster hope and motivation and a positive outlook in extremely negative atmospheres. Of course, everyone has their own histories and ways of looking at the world. And someone who is blindly positive in all circumstances—to the point where you can't even express any less-than-ecstatic feelings without them dismissing you and forcing positivity into every nook and cranny—isn't great either.

Yet, even the most cynical and pessimistic people still need the occasional lights in their lives—especially when something legitimately good actually happens. Beware of those who seek to bring down every modicum of happiness or hope that they see. Those people can make it incredibly difficult for others to feel anything but dread. They might try to dress up their negativity with tired defenses about "being right." But even if that happens to be true on some level, so what? Everyone needs some joy in their life and at least a few things to look forward to. And if your friend never lets you feel good about anything, how are you ever supposed to grow and enjoy what life has to offer?

You're overly competitive with each other (and possibly other friends too).

When it comes to games and contests, it's totally healthy and often very fun to get competitive with your friend. It's one of the best bonding mechanisms there is and can often lead to great memories that you both get to enjoy for years. But when competition infests nearly every part of your relationship, so much so that you can't even enjoy one another's successes without feeling the compulsion to outshine them or bring them down, it becomes something more toxic and harmful.

This also applies to each others' friends. For instance, if one of your friends does something nice for or with you, that shouldn't inspire your other friend to get upset or jealous. Good times with good people should inspire more of the same, not a flexing match to see who can be the "best at friendship."

What kind of friends don't want to hang out and spend time together?

What kind of friends don't want to hang out and spend time together?

They don't get along with any other important people in your life.

Plenty of people have different friend and family groups that don't have perfect overlap. That's natural and nothing to be too concerned about on its face. But if your friend doesn't get along with anyone else in your circle, and everyone else in your circle isn't a big fan of that friend, it might be cause for alarm.

Part of why this can be problematic is that it can create a kind of antagonistic dynamic, where both sides feel opposed to each other, both vying for your attention and support. This can place you in a perennial peacekeeper position, where you're constantly torn between both sides, trying to keep both plates spinning and everyone happy. This is very unpleasant and can really drain you after a while.

You dread talking to and hanging out with them.

Isn't the whole point of a friend is having someone you love talking to and being around? Someone who makes you feel good, that you trust and deeply care about. Then why continue maintaining a relationship with someone you dread talking to or hanging out with or even seeing in the first place?

It's one thing if you just don't feel great, but you already made plans with someone and don't want to let them down. It's something else entirely if there's almost no situations you can imagine where adding this person into the mix wouldn't significantly reduce your chance of having a good time. At that point, what distinguishes them from a person in your life that you actively dislike and would never consider an actual friend?

They drain your energy and leave you feeling depleted.

Doing really anything requires lots of energy, and there's nothing wrong with being tired after hanging out with your friends. Ideally though, that fatigue shouldn't resemble the same kind of soul-draining depletion that you feel after working a shift at a job you hate. That is, it's the kind of tiredness that comes partly from doing various activities, but much more so from all the different ways you have to perform in order for you to comply with your work's (or friend's) expectations of how you should be.

Your friend should be the kind of safe space where you get to be yourself and feel accepted. They shouldn't require the same kind of reluctant performance masking deep bitterness you reserve for your jerk of a boss that you constantly dream of telling off one day. If hanging out with your friend for a few hours leaves you in a kind of state where you feel like you'll need the whole weekend just to recover and recharge, there might be something wrong.

If you find yourself completely drained every time you talk or hang out with your friend, something may be off.

If you find yourself completely drained every time you talk or hang out with your friend, something may be off.

Two Big Questions to Ask Yourself

You might want to ask yourself some simple questions when in a friendship like this:

  • Am I in a good mood after being with this friend? Is there a give and take? Am I entirely truthful with this friend? Do we respect each other? Would my friend talk about me in a negative way to others? Would I talk about my friend in a negative way to others? Does my friend criticize and belittle me? Do I hesitate to share my good news because of how it might make him or her feel? Does my friend abuse the friendship and take advantage of me? Do I even like this person?
  • Why do we hold true to the BFF ideal? This isn’t a legally binding agreement. No one is forcing you to stay friends. It’s never an easy decision to break off the friendship. But if you saw one person physically abusing another, wouldn't you encourage them to end the relationship? Why is emotional abuse any different?

What You Can Do About a Toxic Friendship

No matter how deep the roots of your friendship go or how entrenched in their ways you might think they are, every relationship is capable of healing—as long as there is communication and people are willing to change. In order for that to happen, you have to confront your friend and be direct with them about the nature of your relationship and why you feel it is unhealthy.

Here are some actions that you should consider taking.

Talk to your friend about how their behaviour makes you feel.

This is the first thing you should do, and it's one of the most important. Set up a date to talk with your friend and tell them about how the things they do and say make you feel. Avoid finger-pointing or explicitly trying to make them feel bad. The point is not to get some petty revenge on someone you care about but to help them see how their actions affect others.

There will likely be some resistance here, but remember: nobody can take away your feelings. Be strong and steadfast in your sharing of how you've been feeling. If they're truly your friend, then how you're feeling (especially in relation to them and their actions) should be of great importance to them. This is your chance to make sure they know.

Give them a chance to tell their side of the story.

No matter how sure you might be that you're "The Victim," everyone deserves to tell their side of the story. So be sure to give your friend a chance to talk to you about how they view the relationship, what they think about what you've told them and how they're feeling. It is very likely that they will share certain perspectives that you hadn't thought of or adequately taken into account.

Be wary of letting them bully you into taking back everything that you shared, however. Allowing your friend to voice their perspective shouldn't invalidate yours.

Tell them that if they don't improve their treatment of you, then you might have to start distancing yourself from them.

This is the point where you have to establish boundaries. Though it may be difficult and might feel oddly formal, boundaries are an extremely vital component of every relationship—and really every aspect of your life.

Lay out a clear outline of what behaviours you will not longer tolerate, with a strong emphasis on anything that's particularly abusive, manipulating, dehumanizing or blatantly cruel. Then let them know the possible repercussions if they continue to act that way.

Keep in mind that distancing yourself or outright cutting off all ties can both be totally viable consequences for someone who habitually treats you in an unacceptable manner. It's certainly OK to come up with less drastic consequences for the violation of certain boundaries. But it's important to remember that you're always within your right to sever connections with a friend who routinely treats you horrible.

Call them out in the future when their behaviour is unacceptable.

Now that you've laid out your terms for how your relationship needs to change in order to move forward, you should point out any time those conditions are violated in the future. Remind them of the repercussions for their continued mistreatment of you. Be clear and forceful about your willingness to step back from the friendship should they refrain from these disrespectful habits.

Some Additional Tips for Talking to Your Friend About Their Abuse

  • Whenever possible, talk to them in person: Any important conversation is worth having in person. So much can be lost in translation when serious matters are discussed over the phone, through text or through any other medium. It's tough to understate the importance of physical presence and face-to-face interaction. It holds both parties more accountable and allows for greater connection and empathy. Of course, if you're separated by great distances, then other methods might have to be used. But always try to have critical discussions in person if you can.
  • Listen to what they have to say: Just as it's important to give them a chance to tell their side of the story, it's vital that when they do, you actually listen. Don't go into these talks assuming you're right about everything, and they're just some jerk. It's entirely possible that you are being disrespectful or mean to them in various ways as well, and you'll never know about it (or be capable of change) if you don't hear what they have to say.
  • Don't get roped into arguing: Even if you both get emotional during this process—which isn't necessarily a "bad" thing—be sure to avoid getting roped into a pointless argument where you both say hurtful things and aren't really communicating. These kinds of quarrels tend to focus more of people trying to "win" some imaginary battle rather than actually communicate and connect and heal. If you notice an argument forming, do your best to calm yourself down and bring the conversation back to point where you're actually hearing each other out.
  • Consider creating distance before separation: Though you might reach a point where you're tempted to divorce yourself from your friend entirely, think about establishing a certain level of distance first. Maybe you don't talk to them for a month or two. Maybe you only talk to them on the phone every now and then, with the stipulation that you'll hang up if they start acting abusive. There are lots of different forms of how your relationship works that you can experiment with before resorting to complete separation. If none of those work, however, then you might be looking at something more drastic or permanent.

How to End the Vicious Cycle: My Story

I ended a bad friendship recently. She used me, my other friends and my family for personal gain. She emotionally abused me with guilt, and it took a toll on my other relationships. She always told me that she was an honest and open person. She would cry on cue.

When I would tell her how her behaviour bothered me, she would always type an email personally attacking and blaming me. It was always my fault she didn’t have the life she felt she deserved, and I had everything. She was always doing the best she could, or so she would say. She would bring up the littlest things! At the beginning and end of each email, she would often apologize if it was hurting my feelings, and she never wanted me to be mad at her. Of course, she didn’t want me to be mad at her! It might mean I, her bank/babysitter/gopher/cab-driver/problem-solver etc., might not be around anymore.

One day, it all changed when I received an email from her. I was in-between job interviews and running around like a mad woman. I had checked emails after a particularly stressful interview, and her tirade was the straw that broke the camel’s back. Again, she criticized me, my family, my friends and my children. In criticizing my children, she slapped me in the face for the final time. They had been nothing but respectful and helpful to her, and that was what spurned me into action.

I took steps to eliminate her right then and there. She lashed out at me almost immediately, and I ignored it. There were threats and slander. I still ignored it. In fact, that’s all you can do. Once you let a toxic friend back into your life, you’ll begin that vicious circle all over again. If she sees a chance to worm back into your life, she will. It’s all for her personal gain. I’m glad she’s out of my life.

Most toxic friends have patterns, and mine was no different. Their friendships never seem to last longer than a year. That’s because the toxic friend uses and abuses from the start. It’s always someone else’s fault why the friendship ended. My friend had been told numerous times by people ending the friendship that she was negative!

I thought I was a good friend, almost like a sister. Well, if one of my sisters had behaved that way, I would have no qualms putting her in her place. She has no problem going out to dinner with you and then telling you partway through that she has no money. Or, she just waltzes out of the restaurant, knowing you’ll pay her way. She guilts you into inviting her to functions with your other friends, then insults them all (and drinks all the wine). The toxic friend may even attempt to flirt with your spouse or significant other. They want what you have, no matter how little. Such people are very needy. Mostly for attention.

Walk away and stay away. This doesn’t mean that you don’t love or care about the person anymore. It means that you have more self-respect for yourself. And in the end, that’s the most important friendship of all!

When you find the right friends to connect with, every encounter should make you feel good about yourself.

When you find the right friends to connect with, every encounter should make you feel good about yourself.

Additional Resources

Here are some additional resources to help you determine whether or not you're in a toxic friendship:

This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and is not meant to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified professional.


Shubhangi on September 04, 2020:

I felt so conected with this article and constantly I had one person in my mind while going through this. I have also been in a toxic friendship and she used me for solving her every problem, personal or financial. But now I have started ignoring her and I am at a verge of ending this useless relation with her.

YINNY on August 24, 2020:


michelle on June 23, 2020:

my friend started punching and slapping me causing me to feel sick, get dizzy and get pain in my head but i cant do anything to fight back or avoid her

I.R on January 25, 2020:

my bf doesn’t rlly show love and affection

K8 on October 09, 2019:

I'm 15 and ever since I started school I've been attracting toxic, emotionally abusive people like this. I kind of want to cut off the relationships with those that still remain, but because of some form of trauma of being bullied, I can't even speak my mind or say "no" . Every time I want to confront someone, I know exactly what to say. But when it comes to it, I just break down and don't mention anything. Maybe it's because I don't want to hurt anyone's feelings, but I think I'm just scared they'll blame me, ask me "why?" And make me explain or that they just say I'm wrong. I have many insecurities so this can be hard for me. Talking is no option for me, that's for sure. But stopping the relationship suddenly can be hard if you go to school with these friends. Especially if you usually sit next to them in class. Every symptom in this list reminds me of several people. I don't know what to do. Maybe slowly break down the relationship? Please help me... I need advice.

Jim on September 11, 2019:

Me and my best friend has been directly insulting me with stupid things I said in the past when we are together and it hurt me so I confronted him and told him that I don’t like the way he insults me, after that he stopped talking to me and we don’t hang out anymore, the question is: was he purposefully trying to get out of the friendship or is he just a bad friend ?

victoria on July 02, 2019:

i have a friend of 5 almost 6 years. He was very sweet when we first met, he stuck up for me against his girlfriend and friends at the time and left them to be with me. we used to speak everyday and eventually i fell in love with him but he started leaving me, ignoring me, blocking me on everything for months at a time and he knew that i was in love with him. He would tell me he loved me and that he needed me but then he would make me play these question games and if i got it wrong he would leave again for day sometimes even months. he also used to hit me although he thought playfully it actually hurt. One day my world came crashing down and all i needed was him to be there for me but instead he said he hated me and said horrible things and left me. my depression became severe and it was hard but i picked myself back up and started again. 5 months later he messaged me apologizing and explaining all the medical things that had happen to him and that why he pushed me away. after all that i believe that i have lost feelings but he told me when we started to talk again that he was actually in love with me and wanted us to have a long future together, it has now been a year of him and i on and off talking due to busy schedules but he still sometimes shows signs he hasn't changed like he says if you don't answer this question then i won't come over or i won't go to the movies with you. i have come to tell myself if he leaves then he leaves its not my fault. but ive also come to realize the tables have turned. i used to need him and want him so badly and now it is him who needs me and wants me but he is bad at showing it. Today was a very hard day for me, my depression has been bothering me lately and ive been struggling, and today my mother and i had a huge fight and i just broke down and i texted him telling him that my mom just flipped out on me and i wanted to call for a few minutes so that i could calm down and stop heaving on my bathroom floor but he sent me a long paragraph about how hes thankful for everything he has done for me and how i am his rock and how he hopes i take care of myself and do good with starting college but hes not going to speak to anyone for a long time and he said "lots of love" then he wouldn't answer my calls or messages... today was very hard. and i have always been there for him but every time where i have really needed him there for me, he has just left. i love him and care for him, we have been best friends for along time but i don't think he cares or even really loves me... of course i couldn't write it all but from what i could write.. what do you think?

IONTR on June 24, 2019:

Being in 2 toxic relationships ive learned to let go, stop caring, earsing myself from there life, and never returning to the aftermath. I dont need to seek revenge or try to be an attention whore. I even let my partner have all friends we had in common. I started over.

Jessica on February 19, 2019:

My best friend got into a fight with my other friend. Like, a really bad fight. They refused to talk to each other and she told me not to talk to her. I didn't want to be bossed around like that (nobody does) but she was my best friend so I tried to do my best. When the bell rang, the other friend approached me and said hi while my bff was walking home, and she saw us, even when I didn't talk. She now is convinced I was the one who sparked a conversation and won't talk to me. I don't want to lose her. What should I do?

Random randy on January 15, 2019:

Ok so my friend when she’s play mad at me she’s yank my hair or kick me in the butt but today she started yelling I was a hoe down the halls I think she’s taken it to far

Elise on December 12, 2018:

My best friend keeps ignoring me and tells me my faults all the time and I don't know what to do! To clarify, I lost two friends to suicide nearly three months ago, and I am still grieving and having a really hard time. This is my first time ever losing anyone I love, and I am confused, angry, upset, and a thousand other emotions. I thought that of all people, my best friend would be here for me, but she's not. Actually, it is kinda the opposite. She decided that now is the time to tell me how I always try to one-up her and often criticizes much of what I do. When I get upset, she always makes it about her, saying how she misses the old me and is upset that I'm not being happy. She tells me all the time that it's all in my head and if I tried to be happy then I would be. She says I'm not trying hard enough, but then claims that she totally understands where I am and that it's so much easier than I'm making it. She claims that she understands that I need to grieve sometimes, but she always gets upset at me when I am at a low point. However, she completely ignores me when we're together with others. She never even acknowledges me. I don't know if I am just being over-dramatic or have legitimate reasons to be upset at her, but does anyone have any advice?

Frost on December 06, 2018:

I came out this year to my best friend and she was totally accepting of it. I started dating recently and my best friend gets mad when I don’t answer the phone for her because I’m talking to a guy or she gets angry when she invites me to last minute plans and I have a date already lined up. I never got mad when she went on dates or when she couldn’t talk to me on the phone because she was talking to her boyfriend. It’s like she’s allowed to date and make time for her partners, but the thought of me spending time with someone else aggravates her. She says I’m not giving her enough attention, it’s only been a week. She’ll also try to guilt me into hanging out with her. “Well you were with that guy Saturday, you never have time for me anymore”. I just saw her yesterday and we sat and talked for hours.

gay bitch on November 30, 2018:

my friend is mad at me and my other friend and we have LITERALLY done nothing to him. He was fine one day and we were talking and the next day he didn't want to sit with us or even speak to us. Every time I try to talk and be nice to him he just shakes his head and ignores me. Honestly, it does worry me cause there's nothing that I've done to him. my friend who he is also mad at hasn't done anything either. were both confused and kinda pissed off. he's just being so rude over nothing. this isn't the first time he's done this either.

EricaJames on September 22, 2018:

About two months ago I started to nice the effects of what has been a challenging health crisis. The person who i thought was my best friend, at first, began to cry about my health and then insisted she would put me on her sofa, tend to me and be there for me even if the diagnosis was the worst (doctor ordered CT scans to test for cancers, pancreatic included). I was terrified. My friend within a few days flipped and literally abandoned me at the hospital when i was in for the tests. She literally walked out of the hospital and we have had no contact of any real meaning since. In retrospect it seems clear she had been using me, taking from me and manipulating me. This hurts tremendously and it came at a time when i needed the support and help. The emotional crushing blow coupled with the fight out of the health crisis (was a flare up of chronic Lyme disease, yet another hellish disease). After I helped her move across the country, found her house she is living in and a litany or other things where she took and took from me, when it came time to give something back, she once again made it about her and tried to turn herself into the victim. And I am the one who is emotionally broken now. Is she? I have no idea as she has literally shunned me and cut off communication.

Lauren on August 11, 2018:

Oh and the biggest red flag is that when I was away from him I felt emotionally unstable and drained I felt happy after spending time with him but then when he was gone I didn't feel so happy when I ended the friendship I felt lighter and happy because I can find a friend that will treat me right

Lauren on August 08, 2018:

This guy Dominic I was friends with he was emotionally abusing me he made me feel like I wasn't a priority anymore and he never made time to hang out there's nothing I could have done so I finally had enough and ended the friendship with him I'm confident I did the right thing he didn't act like he cared he didn't do any of the normal friendship things he didn't listen when I talked to him

Sandra on August 07, 2018:

I had a "friend" of 6 years of whom I allowed to "tell me what to do" because I was too weak. When I finally began to stand on my own two feet and make my own decisions, she got angry. When I met a man who I was interested in, she had something to say about him. Trying to include her in my new relationship activities was difficult because she'd voice how much she hated this person and why. So, Because I did not cow-tow to her and dump this guy immediately she went on to claim this person threatened her life one night. The entire night she was egging my boyfriend on and threatened him with the "if you hurt my friend I will..." finally he'd had enough and told her "well I have friends too..." My boyfriend tried to apologize the next day because he felt like he'd ruined my friendship but she would not talk to him and has ended our friendship; along with telling her story to mutual friends of ours I've got friends wondering about my integrity and how I could allow a "man to come between my friendship with her". It pains me because I really hoped that this person would have stepped back to see what she's done but she's "always right" and doing anything other than what she recommends is essentially going against her. I shared so much of me with her for so many years and its hurtful the outcome.

Meow on July 26, 2018:

My so called "friend" just banned me from talking to her brother. Why? Because I was talking about homosexuality with him. She always thinks that everything revolves around her. She doesnt like my boyfriend? Break up with him. She doesnt like my beat friend? Stop talking to her. She doesnt like my house? Sell it. I swear this girl has a mind of a toddler who wants everything to go her way. And while she bans me from talking to her brother because Im so called "brain-washing" him, she constantly flirts with my brother! She honestly annoys the hell out of me, and she removed the one of the only people that actually cared about me. I regret ever talking to her to be completly honest. I didnt realize she was a toxic person unyil I read this article so thank you for writing this

Sherry on April 29, 2018:

That person is a Narcissist all the way through. They have a personality disorder which is a form of mental illness. My one and only sibling is one and I have had years of experiencing the misery she created. My parents are both gone now and it is finally time to go no contact with her so I don't have to deal with her crazy behavior any more. Read up on narcissism. It will explain a lot.

A on April 06, 2018:

Thanks for this, I'm currently stick in a toxic relationship with someone who plays the victim card so I SEEM like the asshole. I'll work hours on stuff just for them to throw it all away behind my back and honestly there are times when I try to cut of ties and they spread rumors about me saying that I'm a 'terrible' friend even though I was the only one there for her when she was in depression, even though I was too she seemed to make it as if my depression was nothing but a fly to swat away and that she had is worse. Honestly I hate how humans have evolved. We all turned into really bad people who only hurt eachother, at least when we die none of this will matter anymore.

H on March 11, 2018:

I have a friend of eleven years who is nothing less than perfect around me. Maybe I'm jealous, maybe I feel threatened, I don't really know. What I do know is that being around her is mentally, emotionally, and physically draining me. She relies on me to drive her in to school (I'm still in high school) everyday, and it's honestly one of the worst parts of my day. Some of my other friends have noticed some "off" things with her and we've talked about it, but there's really nothing I can do to get away from her because these "off" things never relate to me. Some of my other friends, however, really like her. I just can't stand her personality anymore, and I kind of feel worthless when I'm around her. I just really need to get out of this relationship, but she's never done anything wrong to me, and I have no excuse. Not to mention, pretty much everything I do, she copies, so every club I'm in, she's in, so there's no way to get away from her. I just don't know what to do.

zoe on March 06, 2018:

i moved away a few months back, and my (toxic) 'best friend' still wants to keep in touch. i was her only friend there, because no one really wanted to be around her. whenever i don't respond to a text, she automatically asks why i'm ignoring her or why i'm mad at her, which both of these aren't the case considering she texts me while i'm at work and i can't respond as soon as she wants me to. despite this, she always blames it on me saying that i should always find time for just her (even while i'm busy at work). not to mention, when i bring up the slightest topic of me having other friends she gets angry and shuts the conversation down. i don't want to be her 'friend' anymore, and i want to drop her out of my life in the nicest way possible. can someone give me advice, please?

Adam on February 24, 2018:

I have a friend who completely vanishes as soon as she gets a boyfriend. She doesn't want to hang out or barely even talk when she is in a relationship.

However, as soon as her boyfriend realizes that she is a lazy slob that barely gets off her couch and leaves her she blames me for not coming around. She constantly asks for favors and gets mad if I can't immediately put my life on hold and come take care of her responsibilities for her.

The sad part is that she doesn't take care of any of it herself because she is so lazy and drugged up that she can't. She also lies about chronic pain so she can get pain pills from the doctor and uses the "pain" as an excuse to get people to do everything from taking her trash out to putting her daughter in her carseat.

I have finally just cut her off completely. I don't want to be friends with someone like that. You just have to do what is right for you and let relationships like that go.

She will continue to mooch off the government and nob out on her couch while waiting for a man to swoop in a support her financially and take care of her responsibilities. She will never find a man that will put up with that crap tho. Especially since all she does is talk about how horrible men are for not wanting to take care of her lazy a**!

I wish it wouldn't have taken me so long to figure out what kind of loser she is. I feel like I wasted so much time on her. Be careful people .. there are so many trash people like her in this world.

Anna on February 20, 2018:

I have a friend of 3 months. Now that we've spent time together, I've told him a lot about myself, including my nonexistent relationship with family members due to their bullying and abusing me right up to this very day. Suddenly, about a month ago, my friend started becoming very argumentative and authorative with me. Every time I expressed an opinion or asked a question, I was met with eye rolls and demands on why I would think such a thing, how what I thought could be something else entirely, and on and on. I simply made a few statements or asked questions that had nothing to do with saving the universe, but I found myself feeling berated and stupid as I struggled to explain myself! I knew there was a problem because I've been bullied and emotionally abused by family members my entire adult life, but I've never seen it performed in such open rage! Being that I'm experienced in this subject, I outwardly remained quite calm, but inside I was shocked and horrified, and honestly, wondered if his behavior was going to accelerate. I did my best to explain myself calmly, but to no avail. My defense was not accepted. I'm not sure if I did the right thing or not, but that happened twice with this man, and I decided the second time that this wasn't a relationship I should continue. I "divorced" myself from my family 10 years ago because of the never-ending pain they intentionally inflict upon me, and it's been extraordinarily painful and lonely, but the only way I can ever hope to live a healthy life. I decided I can't risk my health again, throw all the lessons away that I've endured, just to have a relationship with someone who causes me harm all over again. I do wonder though, if the reason I quit is because of my past experiences with my family. Maybe I read something in it that was not there, but I still think I made right decision. I don't know how I got so strong, but I've always believed that I'm better than that. I believe I deserve to be healthy, and as satisfied with life as I can muster.

Anonymous on January 03, 2018:

I have gotten into a fight with my friend.Today I got a msg from her bestfriend saying she got into a fight with her.She seems a bit suspicious.My other friend texts saying she got in a fight with her as well.I made a 3 way chat with them and they kept talking about how they hate her.They kept asking me if I hate her.I kept avoiding the question and whenever I'd change the subject the didn't want to.I wanted proof from one of my friends and she said she deleted the msg.I feel like they're plotting something with the girl I had s fight with. Does anyone have any advice for me?

Karren on December 31, 2017:

My find can't see she has toxic. People around her. She's 46 live with alcoholic mother that demands beer and ciggs everyday you find away to get it i do t care that you have money. Get it for me now.Then there's theboy friend that beats her physically and mentally he say just she ask how hi. I can't. Stand it how do i help her?

Sue on December 11, 2017:

I made friends with a lovely women over 10 years ago on vacation, we got on so well, instantly clicked, we both said it was like we had known each other for years!

We had a lot in common and kept in regular contact, I visited her again for her sons wedding and we met every couple of years on vacations we arranged.

One year she was desperate to have me over with my son but he was having assessments at school so I went alone, good thing too because she turned nasty.

She wanted me over at her house and set everything up for me, I flew from Europe to USA, first few days were fine, we had a lot of fun, then one day she had an emergency meeting at work so left me with a neighbor friend.

The friend took me on a day out to local places and my friend assumed I would just be staying at her home because she was on sick leave.

My friend made it clear she blamed me for asking to explore when her friend was not even supposed to be driving, I had no idea about this and was hurt, I felt very guilty I had no idea.

Then a few more days into my stay we went for lunch I payed for my own first then noticed my friend was very quiet throughout lunch, a few days later at a coffee shop I went to pay and she told me to put my money away so I did, later that day she stopped at the side of the road at exploded with rage at me how I had not payed for the coffee and how I didn’t offer to pay for her lunch. I explained she told me to put my money away and she denied it, about the lunch I told her whenever I offered to pay for fuel etc we always got into a debate about it and decided it was best not to offer to pay and go through the whole debate in a small family run cafe.

I was genuinely sorry and shocked, I had offered to pay many times and she always got upset with me.

She went on that it seemed I didn’t appreciate her or her family and how they had made effort to accommodate me etc

Later at her home I heard her discussing this with her husband and he didn’t offer much in reply but by that time I just thought I needed to get out of there.

The next two days I looked for a flight she left me at their home and went to work, I found a flight told her I would leave, she was upset and cried, said she was sorry but I said it’s best I go.

I did, we kept in contact but not like before, I stayed 7 of my 16 days, I hid $400 in her makeup bag before I left with a note saying how I thought this was an appropriate amount for keeping me and sorry.

She found that money the next day or before I was even home and she was fuming, I sent her a long message saying that in her argument she had noted I had not payed for anything so this was me paying for everything.

It’s christmas shortly and it’s the first year out of 10 I have not sent her a gift.

I found it very strange for her to say ‘don’t pay it’s my treat I wanted you here and you have spent enough already’

To say

‘You have not put your hand in your pocket once, my family has had to accommodate you and you dont appreciate it’

When multiple times I offered to pay, I wondered why she even invited me?

This happened years ago and I’m still not over it, I think about it often and always wonder if I was really at fault, or were we both?

David lo. on November 25, 2017:

Aha can i text my girl friend who being put down. In front I her friends

Amal on November 25, 2017:

We have been friends for almost 27 years.I never knew her well. My best friends is cursed with the love of money and high society. She would replace me for another rich friend. Once she said, I pet you can't buy a rolls like so and so

Mina on October 31, 2017:

I had a toxic friend for more than a decade, since we were 5 and it wasn't easy. Our parents were friends so I kept meeting her and doing stuff with her, which I didn't mind at first, but she seemed to enjoy hurting me and bullying me. Some of it including hair pulling and that physical aspect shocks me today as to how 5 year-olds could be so cruel. I guess that despite my hatred for her, I ended up developing a care for her too as she was very clever and we could talk intellectually at times. She wasn't horrible all the time, but she was stubborn and close-minded on loads of things which still baffles me as I expected that for someone as smart as her she would be more accepting. I had a love-hate relationship with her as 'frenemies' but I never truly made that clear as I was still figuring it out, so we were always shown as the 'best mates' but we really weren't.

Now I'm in high school and I have real friends that actually care for me and not when it pleases them. I now understand that my friendship was abused and though I knew it before many times (I wasn't naïve) my optimism and forgiveness continued to give way. It was also easier to stick with people who you already knew than try to put yourself back out there in the friendship market.

Obviously, I still care for her because of our long acquaintance but I know now that I can't trust her. She made me feel guilty and self-conscious over trivial matters and that has psychologically affected me even today, I'm afraid to speak in public due to my self-conscious behaviour over what I say.

I think this is a problem that needs to be addressed. While these people may never change, we need to support those who have suffered by them. I keep thinking 'what if..' if I hadn't met her, my childhood would have actually been worth remembering but it has made me a stronger person.

BettyBB on October 07, 2017:

I had a best friend who started pulling away from me two years ago when she became friends with a controlling, obnoxious woman whom I disliked. I started feeling like I was second best. My friend and I became more and more distant. She wasn't there for me during loss when I needed support, but I'm very forgiving.

The obnoxious woman died of natural causes a few days ago. As always, I was there for my friend and reached out to her in her grief. I learned that she was also having serious marital problems, some of which had been caused by this controlling friend. I spent a lot of time with her and gave her advice. She wasn't grateful for my help. Her response was how much she missed her deceased friend's advice.

I felt crushed and rejected. I keep asking myself if this friendship is toxic. Perhaps it's time to end this friendship.

Sandy on August 18, 2017:

I have this friend we have been friends for like 3 years now. Everytime I'm around her I feel so little.I believe she is a bully if we opening a bag of chips she want to be the one to take first and the bag should be on her hands.She just told me that I onced said I don't like her boyfriend which is not true. I tried telling her sometimes how I feel but it all turns to me that Im a bad friend.

j.c. on July 13, 2017:

My good friend and I use to hang out on weekends, her dad got really sick, I understand family I important. Well when was in the are she would ask to hang out. for example I work in the are she lives, I left my cellphone at home,when I go home I looked at it, se called me 5 times,when I called her the comment to me was are you home I was hoping to catch ou to see if you want to go to lunch,she didn't bother to say I can meet you out by byou fr lunch.S he use to come out by meet on weekends, she hasn't. I realize her mom needs her because her husband passed away, I feel hurt,she oly sees to hang out if I am in the area she lives. she complains she goes to her moms 2 times. I feel being her friend has changed. I may a comment lt me knw when you can come out by bme. When we do hang out she is always checking her phone. Please help me with what is going on.

Ruby Kloss on June 26, 2017:

I found this article a couple of years ago when I was fed up with my BFF from 4th grade, friends for over 50 yrs. When I read this article it described her to a tee. I was amazed. But I always forgave and overlooked her. Last year I had cancer and went through hell. After surviving the treatments and getting the all clear I made up my mind that I would not have any toxic people in my life. I warned her that I would not put up with negativity but yet she seemed to think it meant everyone but her. He had me in tears over and over. Finally the last straw was at my daughter's wedding, just before we started taking the group pictures she got nasty and my eyes and face were red because of her. STILL I got over it because we all had so much fun at the reception. Then as soon as she got home she sent me a foot long text telling me how RUDE and mean I was to her, on and on she went....that was the last time I talked to her. It's been like a death for me but I will not give in this time or forgive.....this article has helped me stick to my guns.

Susieq on May 16, 2017:

A friend for fifty years and she started to attack me about seven years ago. She would make comments about my hair, something in my teeth when there wasn't and I get my hair fixed at a salon..yells at me when I drive toindustry her and go the way she tells me...attacks me about the backs of the earrings I am wearing not being even andyour hair covers upthe hair she even had scream at my husband..she is not a nice person and we have taken many trips together and I wish I knew what was wrong with her....I don't even want to see her face ever again

TAWNYA on March 05, 2017:

I have been in several with people seeing how "popular" I was. They wanted to jump in on my supposed fame , but ended up ditching me for my more wealthier , cooler friends. After that one ended, I have started focusing on myself, and making sure I do my best tospeak up when people push boundaries and creating those boundaries as well.

A new one popped up, making friends with people who didn't like me, but now is "friends" with me, all the while spreading gossip about my (non-existant)hard drug use and much more, while pretending and smiling in my face while showing screenshots of cropped conversations to me and a group that aren't showing me what is being said about me. I also don't know if she is doing much more than just online backstabbing as well.

bg15@zoomtown.com on February 25, 2017:

I have a very good friend who is going through an ugly divorce. She calls me several times a day. She talks about terrible things she is going through. I try to help her but nothing I say works. I feel sick mentally from all the negativity. My parents divorced when I was young and it was horrible. I got past that into sunny skies. Now I feel like I have gone back there. I told her that I am very empathetic and feel her pain. She says oh I am making you sick. Then I feel bad and listen to her. I care for her so much. How should handle this?

Demon on February 23, 2017:

I can totally relate to what I've just read it let's me know that I am not alone in the heart aching mind breaking kind of relationship with a most sincere and really quite frankly my marriage of 9+ years is something that I am not able to continue with,the mental health state that I'm left with and my emotional impact on the end of a game that I feel I am part of, me myself can hear the screams and crys from the depths of me and I am looking into the most reasonable outcomes that can occur when the moment of taking it into action and to get the courage/strength to do the most and pretty much make like a tree and leave this relationship with a most deceitful and cold hearted person who I had once been so madly and deeply in love with and did everything together with,pretty much I can see me making ghost and I want to get on with my life and I am not even ever planning on turning back to it because I am to afraid that if I was to return to the relationship between the two of us, me t that I may not able to get away with my mental health and well being, thanks for the great post you wrote ,it let's me know that I'm not crazy.Sincerely, Richard.

Leah on February 21, 2017:

Okay I just met this young girl who 28 year I'm 42 befriend her she didn't know anyone she doesn't have family here in Hawaii her parents pay rent and her bills while she live Hawaii so I only knew her for about five month I took to airports and pick her up so then this new woman who 33 with two kids from Florida move to Hawaii 33 month go I live Hawaii for almost 18 year and I never had some much drama until this female come from Florida she is mess a mean mess she say she doesn't feed into anyone drama that lie so caused issue with frist young girl I befirend 5 month go because the one come from Florida and went back told some lie and alway twist my words around it funny because this 33 years have two kids and I cant Believe she act like high school bully and trying ruin friendships because she's used she want

Emily on February 01, 2017:

I had a friend and she would use me and tell me that who I could and cont not be friends with and then one day I was ired of it so I told her I did not want to be her friend and now she is saying that I am call people all kinds of names and a lot of ppl don't like me BC they believe her and they the next day she has been calling me fat and ugly and it is hurting my felling

Tree on December 12, 2016:

I hve to stay anonymous This old/ex friend will find anything I post...I'm trying so hard to forgive ..I've had to get several ppo me and my children ...she harassed and destroyed friendships with my daughters friends...going to their /parents houses telling my daughter a bad friend ...she keeps posting personal private things of me and my family my kids online everywhere she contacts my other friends to make me look bad say I said this or that ...she tells everyone she slept with my husband ..It's been 5 yrs and it's still going on!! I've done everything ignored it, ppo , then our local police she did a lot more that will take to long to tell!! I've confronted her and she backed off for a minute!! I just don't know what to do anymore she is manipulative she gets online friends to post orbtalk about what she did ..now she twisting everything and she claiming victim...I give up because I don't want to deal with her and others I don't know!! This is so so deep!! And I'm at my wits end!! I'm not the first she's done this too !! But im her worst case for the stalking and obsessive behavior ...I even deactivated ALOT of my social media to but I change my name she has all these fake accounts /re makes accounts pretending to be my good friends so she can sneak her way in to see what I say or posting anything!! I have no Facebook now..I don't go on other things ...she has destroyed my daughter to wanting to hurt herself I seriously am at Gods feet! Cause I just don't know how to forgive this! Or get it to stop!! HELP!!!!

Linda on November 04, 2016:

OMG....this article could be about my very good friend who became friends with another lady about 12 months ago. This woman told my friend that she is jealous of me and wants to be treated the same way. I was quietly flattered when my friend explained to her that we had been friends for a long time and that she didn't know her the same way she new me. She is self centered and nasty, always everything is about her but my friend is so lovely to everyone that she just tries to keep the peace. Just lately I have been quite concerned that she has started to invade my friends personal space when I am present. For example, she has cupped my friends breast in her hand, rubs her arm and holds her hand, bitten her on the shoulder, hugs her quite closely, puts her head on my friends chest and when my friend has asked why she is doing this she said she just wanted to listen to her heart. I think she is trying to make me jealous but I have so far ignored it. The latest thing is that she told my friend a lie that I had said something nasty about one of our co-works, who is actually quite lovely. This is the second time this has happened. I'm not sure how to go about confronting her or perhaps I should just let her burn until she is caught out

Panda on September 10, 2016:

I had a toxic friend in my life he would act like he would want to hang out as friends and be was too busy . I forgave him for his mistakes even the first time we hung out. But he left me hanging and later found out he had a gf. So trust your gut instincts. He never told me much even as a friend. I didn't know he had a gf until recently.He said sorry a lot but I don't believe it. I feel like the word sorry was only for guilt and people who are toxic want make you feel guilty. I moved on . I gave him plenty of chances to be my friend.

Joanna phillips on August 25, 2016:

My brother is like that, always talking shit to me and my 3 kids always putting us down. Hurting our feelings, try and say what were going to do . Hes so hateful. I can't stand it anymore. O think their is some abuse there. What do you think? Van you tell me. My email is joannaoyler26@gmail.com please let me know. Thanks

Ilios on August 09, 2016:

I have a friend that treats me like crap whenever I'm over at her house or she is at mine. Every time we see each other all she does is talk to her other friends and completely ignore my existence. When we go out she always leeches money off me and says "I'll pay it back," LIKE THAT'S EVER HAPPENED. Every time I try to explain my feelings she just ignores me. And every time she has a problem I'm there to listen, but when I have a problem she ignores me and starts to text her friends. And she is mad at me because I wasn't able to come over three times in a row. OMG I have a life outside of you, then she quizzes on every little detail on why I can't come. But when she can't come over I just say "ok," and I don't quiz her on every little detail. She also doesn't take no for an answer, it's like she doesn't know the meaning of it. I've wanted to get out of the relationship but I'm still confused and don't know what to do. I also don't if I want to break it off because we were good friends before she started treating me differently. I am very unclear of what to do.

Jade on March 06, 2016:

I'm in a platonic friendship with a guy, but he treats me like crap sometimes. I'm 17 and even though I love him like a brother, I am sick of not being treated right. I took me 3 years to realise how he didn't respect me and really feel the same way back. I always call him out on bad choices and he does the same but I try to be respectful and he just rips into me. I was so used to just being treated like crap or as "one of the guys" when I know I'm not, and I am not sure how to ask for that respect from him or if I should just get out of the relationship. He insists that I need to contact him first even though he is capable of calling me whenever, but he refuses to do that. I just want to be respected, and don't want to lose him, but if that is what needs to be done I will be able to. We are both scarred and have messed up pasts, but I've been too submissive to him, and unsure what I should do.

Test on November 15, 2015:


xaveior on November 01, 2015:

I lost my best friend.....Miss her. I had really never had one....before, Im am sorry

Marc Lee from Durham, NC on October 11, 2015:

It is often hard to let people go because you get so used to them and their ways...but sometimes you just have to say NO and let IT GO!!!!

Maggima on September 04, 2015:

Hi everyone!

Probably we had mean people treating us in really reallly mean ways."But" I ought to say my best friend is not one of them.But I feel emotionally trapped as well .

The reason because is she has a family which is kinda not financially stable ..so there are tantrums and all always going on in her life.She has encountered relations with two guys..through social networking sites...and got really serious about them...but the first one turned out to be a dick..who said he wanted someone better looking and left..so I asked her to totally stop communication with him because your not some substance to be treated so..and told her to be with someone who can respect her.

She did..But what I dint know is...blowing this guy off was not sufficient...because she seemed to be developing a really low self esteem ever since..but has always been sad She used to be happy when.l with me...so I never knew.The next time she comes up and tells me theres this really sensible guy who likes me...and seeks permission from me to get into a relationship..because she really gives my opinion some importance.The guy seemed sensible but I told her...you never know better be friends ....she had already one foot into the realtionship..so I knew that I.couldnt tell anything more.And she also told that I never knew how depressed she was on.the inside and the only way to come out of that was getting into relation with this one.

Probably I was wrong then to let her decide by herself.

This guy had been a support to her for a subsequent few days...but got really bored of her problems or whatsoever..and used one of their major fights to leave.Since then ,she kept texting him and calling him in vain and all he replies is saying he was really hurt and would never come back.

But the actual coz of which they got into a fight was not huge at all that he could get hurt about it forever. I intervened and spoke to him in the beginning in a nice way and letter a bit rough and asking him would he do the same if it was some other relation of his life. Every conversation with him would always end with an affirmation saying he would call but never would...instead would just text her saying,I'm really hurt. I hAving been a person who was in a relation with a guy who was emotionally unavailable totally understood how my friend felt.But in my case my boyfriend always cane back apologising for his behaviour ,but in her case it was not happeneing because That guy seemed to be finding her too needy, sensitive and possessive.He was using his way through to end it.

I tried to explain her in million ways...people who love you would never leave ..no matter what happens...and I was always with her eversince..she used to get away sometimes having fun..but having taken the blame from the guy she loved that she is negative really ate a part of her soul off.How much ever I tried to make her happy she would never get totally.

Meanwhile her emotional concentration slowly shifted from him to me...where she thought I was the foremost important person in her life .(.but never totally took my advice..though I dont expect it to happen always.) I had her meet all my friends and my family too and all bonded well .Though she used to constantly get upset whenever she was at her house I used to always take her out with others or somewhere so that she had a better pace in a day....Thats when things were getting tough , I.couldnt meet her everyday.and I.am not a person who is very punctual..and all this kerps pissing her off and she constantly.kept telling me I dont get her situation.She used to feel bad that I always give ptiority to others more than her when all I was doing is just occassionally turning up to my other friends like on their birthday or something.

I even stopped telling her about my boyfriend issues and even stopped acknowledging him when I was around her.I just wanted her to think there is world out there that loves her if she was ready to live it all.

Academically also she started getting screwd and as she was my best friend even I was busy helping her so did I

She has ways to interpret things that I did not mean to hurt her as hurtful things and that I did not give how much she is giving into our relation.But according to me I have .I went out of my ways and helped her many times because I thought she duly deserved it and because she would do the same ..and has also helped me a lot many times.

But after that everything I do is being judged as whether it was genuine or not by her. And even my family members and friends are being judged by her about whether they love her or not.

I might have been caught up sometimes with my family issues ..but she always thinks that she is not important to me and only my other friends and family are ,,and all this judgement was based on past events when she has not been that great a friend for me also.

Recently she got to know the guy she loved was ready to get committed with some other chick who happened to be our friend only..it broke her...but it was after an year after they stopped talking..but the way that guy behaves is like a total people pleaser and could easily flirt with another chick with no hard feelings.And then as she got to know this news because of her bcompelling our other friend to talk it out she snapped at me that I never helped her to know what he truly is.

Proabbly I dint help her to know him how he is when she is actually not around and had also seen her crying for him and spoiling things a million times...bu t Ive always stayed with her through those times and saw that she was okay at the end and could do her other important things atleast well.

And as her parents dont approve of her to be very social and all..she has to be most of the time at home..and I have to go to her house only way to meet her.And as she is a bit overweight she has problems of people at her home and outsiders taunting her..But I always told her she was pretty and should believe in it more than anything and even proved it to her many times.

All in all,I donno when my friend gets happy or sad.She never seems contended.She never seems ready to give all she has to some activity because she thinks she cant do it and I spend half the time telling her she can do it . After that it either gets too late or I loose interest in it .

Recently she had plans of us shifting together to an apartment to take a course together.I was okay with it But I could because of my family situation

Now she is caught up in her home in a situation she is not well and her parents are balming her for her unhealthy habits like she is lethargic and she wakes up late in the morning and constantly scold her for being fat and thats what is leading to the health issues.When I turn up to her to make her feel better..she totally made it clear that she could never get better and I dint go by her say that we had to shift to an apartment and thats why she is having all these problems and that I wouldnt understand her until she dies.

She said that thing which hurt me a lot. I know its okay for her to take it out on me every now and then ...I understand. But it does not mean everytime I can deal with me being called someone who doesnt care when I put so many things aside ..just because I wanted her to have a great life.I seriously dont think she will understand even if I explain.She would only think im like her ex making her feel she is negative.I never want to...thats the reason I never told her she is blaming me too hard.

She is a sweetheart when it comes to helping me at times...but I really dont know what more to do in this stage

.I would stay with her no matter what ..but Im just scared that would not make things any better.

I really need help with this!!

lily Anne on May 06, 2015:

I too have a friend of this nature only seems to want you when nobody else is around sickening because she always said she'd like me to meet somebody who would be good and kind to me but then she never thought anything of it when she used to flirt with him whenever i wasnt a round wearing revealing clothing and making sure her body was on display till one nite after we had finished gettin ready for a nite out she decided she would remove her top and stand poised in the bedroom door wearing only her heels tiny skirt and bra all whilst myself and others were downstairs and her comment to my partner was oh i didnt no you wer up here

Jan Grossmann from Czech Republic, Zlín on February 28, 2015:

Well, maybe we should accept these people as they are. I know it would be nice to talk only with people we like, but we grow and mature when we control our emotions and are able to deal with problematic people. On the other hand, it is important to choose our friends wisely.

Sai Chaitanya from INDIA on November 15, 2014:

I can understand the way, you have felt, when you were reading emails, sent by your friend. But, Never give them a second chance. Because, Giving them another chance, will be the worst thing, that we could do in our life. Toxic Friend must be kept away, even if they asks for apologizes, after hurting.

Unknown on November 08, 2014:

My friend emotionally abuses me sometimes. She puts me down when she talks sarcastically and tells me that I'm too serious or that she's only joking. But I'm actually getting mad. If I hang out with my other friends she would ask what we did and would say "Oh I see" in a very condescending tone. Or if I talk about my future career she always needs to bring hers up and compare and say that her career doesn't get enough credit and in her tone her career is more important than mine. She just can't be happy for me. I have no idea what to do. I thought she's my friend. We've known each other for 7 years. I always feel like I have to watch what I say with her. If I don't she will grind me for it.

jean walker on September 15, 2014:

Jean walker

Amelia on September 08, 2014:

I'm in a similar situation with one friend. So I have 2 friends that I'm close to and I invited one friend to go out with me and we didn't tell the other friend (the toxic friend) so she found out and got mad that we didn't invite but the thing is she never has money to do anything and that day she had class. So she wrote me n my other friend and made us feel guilty that we hung out with each other and didn't let her know. I don't know if we were wrong but I seriously wouldn't even care if they were hanging with each other and didn't tell me anyways the toxic friend made me and my other friend feel so guilty that we hung out without her. I't just annoying, so she made my other friend promise her that if me and my other friend do anything with each other my other friend must let her know. I feel like it's not right we should have the right to hang with each other whenever we want and she don't need to know. The toxic friend is always high and drinking she seem cool when she's on stuff but when she's not she is always sad and every little thing we say or do is an issue. Like the other day I had a question about something she always bring up and she wrote me and asked me why i questioned her and wrote this long thing about how it made her feel sad that i questioned her it was just a question and she never answered it. Again she making it like I did something wrong that i questioned her. Im just so exhausted to be around her like anything we say or do hurts her feelings. Like It's annoying I can't stand this shit... and i told her straight out and i told her she don't have to answer my question just forget it i don't care than she writes me and said what u mean u don't care? I told her she don't have to answer the question i don't care for the answer. but seriously it was back and forth she would always make us feel bad for her and feel pity for her and start a fight over the stupidest thing. Like god get over it... Life isn't fair. I feel like I can't hang with my other friend cause oh gee if she finds out she'll get mad at us for not including her it's like what am I in a relationship with her and i need to let her know who I hang out withe. She said the reason y she got mad was because she thought we were a click we do everything together but the problem is she never has money and never can do anything but at the same time she doesn't wanna work much. Sometimes me and my other friend feels used. It's like we always drive her around cuz she can't cuz she always toxicated or high, never offer gas money, always sad and i don't know it's just a negative energy it's so exhausting I dont even wanna hang with her much because of this reason. ALways turning everything on us that we make her feel bad it's like everything makes her feel bad. If we question or say something she don't wanna hear it gonna make her feel bad or we are a negative person. It's like get over the past move on and if we tell her to get over it then she be complaining and making u feel guilty like how can we say that to her. it's like I don''t even wanna give her advice cuz theres no point cuz she would turn it around on u and make u feel bad if she didn't like the answer how u can say that to her. Like ok don't talk to me than if u will not take my advice and turn it around and making us feel pity or get into a fight. It's took much I got kids, work and a life to deal i with. I don't have time for bullshit. I feel like a bad friend to feel this way but my other friend feels the same way. She dwell on everything , we feel like she uses us n she' just depressing to be around. Always crying and complaining bout everything.

Johnc986 on September 04, 2014:

Hey there! Do you know if they make any plugins to badgfkddfede

Gyles Evans from Cedar Rapids, Iowa on August 23, 2014:

Well its a good thing you let that friend go because that's this cause depression and stress and then they want you to do stuff that you don't want to do and in reality that person that let you go needs you more then you need that person

Leslie A. Shields from Georgia on August 22, 2014:

Absolutely... we should judge which friends are good for us by whether they are good to us... We need honesty, but we do not need control.

LailaK from Atlanta, Georgia on July 30, 2014:

I recently went through something like this, but the toxic friend ended up ditching me and saying hurtful words. When she wanted my help again, she texted me saying that she misunderstood something I said and explained why she denied all the good I've done for her. No remorse. No applogize. Just like that, she said what she said and left me haunted for almost a month later. Great hub! I totally relate!

thom w conroy on July 12, 2014:

What can even be worse than a toxic friend is a toxic in-law....it can't get any more distressful because you're usually stuck with them for life..

DChance on April 21, 2014:

To the comment above: Tell him that he is right. You are a real n word who is has always been in love with him. Your love for him has no bounds. Your dark skin and his must mix. Ask him if he wants to be in a commented relationship with you. Tell him every night before you sleep you are dripping in sweat. Even your wettest dreams can not compare to the light of day when you can truly see his heart beating only for you. Then, you will hold out your hand. Take it back. Say, "No, you are my friend. I must not love you in that way." Add a little sniffle as if you are going to cry, "I really care about you man. Could you back off?"

anonymous male 21 on April 17, 2014:

I've been friends with this person 5-6 years. He wasn't toxic during the first 3 years. I have just realized how toxic he is. He constantly calls me faggot and the n word when I'm neither. He constantly says no woman is good for me whether it's friends or romantic interest. He recently found two of my long lost childhood friends and has used one against me. I feel like telling my other friend to save the friendship, but I'm afraid he might tell my toxic friend. He shoots me down every time I want out of the friendship. I want to leave but I'm afraid he'll just ruin more of my friends and friendships. What is the easiest way out? P.S. I've tried verbally telling him and the silent treatment. He doesn't seem to get it.

Kenneth Avery from Hamilton, Alabama on April 11, 2014:

I am amazed at the amount of comments. I envy that.

I truly enjoyed this hub. I think it is a great piece of work and creativity. Voted up and away. I am going now to follow you, and I invite you to check out my works and be one of my followers. That would make my day.



from a small rural town in northwest Alabama

Reminds me of my own toxic friend in seventh grade. He was so envious, manipulative, and childish, he prevented me from having a good time and good life in those years.

Thanks for sharing.


gabbbie on April 10, 2014:

Hi, I always had a great group of good and loyal friends growing up. I became best friends with a girl who I grew up with. The part that saddens me is we have been BF for thirty years but over the year she has changed to a toxic friend. So my question is: What do you do when you have been friends for such a long time yet year after year this person who once use to be great, kind, thoughtful and true-now has become a manipulator, user and and completly dishonest?

We have been friends for so long. But what once use to be kind caring two way street friendship has become one sided. Every time she shows up to meet she waits untill the bill comes and then tells me she has no money-even though we have discusused the money before going out and expects me to front her money. Every year we plan a vacation a year in advance and discuss if that is affordable and how we we will have to both save but at the last minutue once again "something came up" but she inherited enought to buy a mercedes. This is all so sad, but there onse was a beautiful kind caring person there. Do you abandon your friends when they change or is there any way to help such alife long friend??

Miss my friend on April 08, 2014:

This is really sad to hear. One of my friend who I really valued cut me out of her life... It breaks my heart because I really miss her. There are a lot of toxic people in my life.... They are dragging me down... these people were dragging down her down as well. She had known this group for over 5 years and introduced me to my boyfriend. She was in a relationship with one if my boyfriends friends.

But after her partner ended it she managed to distance herself and make friends with a really nice group of people.

This toxic group continues to hurt and disrespect me and put me down.

I know she knows what I am going through. I don't blame her for for cutting me out... Because I am not the best at making decisions at the moment for myself or for my friendships.

But I could really wish i had her by my side right now telling me that I'm strong, telling me I deserve better and helping guide me down the right path.

I know I need her more then she needs me. I needed a support person so much... That I forgot to embrace this person who I love and care about... I forgot about the importance of happiness and friendship.

Andrew Burgon on April 07, 2014:

Good call, Kaylee.

I have adopted a 'vibrant and fresh' protocol in my life. I draw close to myself the best, most vibrant friendships I can in my life and let them fill my mind. I also let go of those friendships that continually bother me.

Andrew Burgon

Project Fellowship

willofgod4me on April 07, 2014:

I made the break from my toxic friend or more like frenemy. The rag was tore off the bush over the weekend. It had been building and I had made up my mind I did not want to keep it up. She had invited me to her place for her boyfriend's birthday and I was miserable because he hates me and has backstabbed me like a 1000 times. I was sitting there praying to God to provide me an out and He did. A moment came when something distasteful was said and I scowled and he repiled by telling me if I didn't like it I could get the hell out and I gathered myself up and said fine by me and left. I called her and told her I would tolerate no more that I was done. We had one more incident that day and it ended with me hearing a very revealing voicemail recording that had her and him talking about me and they did not/do not realize their phone was recording and I heard it. I did not respond and simpky said the heck with it I am better off. I don't think she really appreciated me but instead I was more of a pawn she could use to irritate him-it is a constant thing and I want no part of such drama nor do I need such toxic individuals in my life.

Levertis Steele from Southern Clime on April 06, 2014:

This makes me check myself. I do not want to be a toxic friend, and I hope I am not.

Where is the author?

Anashra Asim Butt on April 02, 2014:

I am having a toxic friend help me to get rid of her... :( :( :(

willofgod4me on March 30, 2014:

I am in the process of having to ditch a frenemy. My issue with this person is that why she has shown some amount of kindness to me she at the same time has some very bad habits and personal issues that are of a potential risk to my overall well being. She has a bad habit of not heeding caution whereas other toxic people are concerned and when she lets them in to her life she also causes that baggage to be a risk to others around her and it has weighed me down to the point it has made me physically and emotionally ill plus there is the fact that I obviously cannot trust her to keep her word to me that she will use caution and now I have ot be even more guarded because of her unwillingess to be as guarded as she should be. I have tried to explain myself until I am blue in the face to no avail so the only thing I can do is to begin making myself unavailable to her. It still concerns me that I will have to be on guard against others she was too naïve to get involved with. She complains about the trouble they cause her yet she shows me no signs of trying to do anything about it and it is not a risk I am willing to take as I have been damaged too many times in the past already due to similar circumstances. I am an introvert by nature and don't "need" friends-I do like to go to church but not to socialize and that is where my main contact with her came about but as with any other similar person you just need to do what you know you must and go on about your way so you can have peace and stay on your given path. You can't change them-you can only change yourself.

keely on March 13, 2014:

My now former best friend of 25 years or so turned really toxic once I got married. It seems she is envious of everything, so I never talk about the positives in my life. Recently, we traveled together, along with a few other much younger women (whom I didn't know) and she basically ignored me most of the trip. We only see each other once a year and this has never happened before. I am a couple of years older and am choosing the aging gracefully route, while she is exploring injectables and god knows what else to look younger - which I think irks her on many levels as I am no longer a mirror. She insulted me several times over the trip - now I am done with her toxic, very low self-esteem. When we went our separate ways at the airport I made the choice never to see her again. Of course, being the toxic narcissists that she is she sensed my agitation. She called me the next day to talk about some guy, and when we hung up I said, "I love you ####" knowing it will be the last thing she ever hears out of my mouth. The last few years I thought she was having a mid-life crisis, but now I don't know what to think. I believe she is one of those people you have to love from afar. One last thing, how do I unfriend her on FB? Maybe she will unfriend me, a girl can dream.

Keely on March 13, 2014:

My now former best friend of 25 years or so turned really toxic once I got married. It seems she is envious of everything, so I never talk about the positives in my life. Recently, we traveled together, along with a few other much younger women (whom I didn't know) and she basically ignored me most of the trip. We only see each other once a year and this has never happened before. I am a couple of years older and am choosing the aging gracefully route, while she is exploring injectables and god knows what else to look younger - which I think irks her on many levels as I am no longer a mirror. She insulted me several times over the trip - now I am done with her toxic, very low self-esteem. When we went our separate ways at the airport I made the choice never to see her again. Of course, being the toxic narcissists that she is she sensed my agitation. She called me the next day to talk about some guy, and when we hung up I said, "I love you ####" knowing it will be the last thing she ever hears out of my mouth. The last few years I thought she was having a mid-life crisis, but now I don't know what to think. I believe she is one of those people you have to love from afar. One last thing, how do I unfriend her on FB? Maybe she will unfriend me, a girl can dream.

Hendrika from Pretoria, South Africa on March 04, 2014:

I always say rather completely alone than with a toxic friend. Come to think of it, it must be the reason why I choose my friends carefully and I do not have that many friends.

Hannah on February 27, 2014:

Thanks for posting. I had a toxic friendship with two sisters, who befriended me and my best friend, it lasted from 3rd grade to freshmen year, and messed me up a lot. I say it was an emotionally abusive relationship, though a lot of people would scoff at that, but it was. They mistreated me, tore my friend and me apart, made me dependent on our friendship, stole from me, lied to me, played mind games that left me confused and blaming myself. I found small ways to rebel and get back at them, and became cynical about the relationship, even though I needed their approval. I spent years with my mouth shut, believing I was stupid, ugly, and that nobody wanted to see or be near me. I didn't know how to get away, and it was by a miracle, that they simply got bored of me and moved on. I plowed through highschool with my head down, and made it out with two friends and a few acquaintances who were very nice to me, but I didn't really start healing until I graduated. I had a reality check recently, and was surprised to hear myself say, I never thought I would ever feel this confident or loved again. God is good; very good.

lilcupcake on January 06, 2014:

Just a few months ago a got rid of one of these people. she hadn't always been that way, so i thought it was a phase because of something she was going through. so i decided to stick with her and be by her side. until months passed, and she kept treating me worse and worse every day. I'm a sickly person, and i have responsibilities which she never did. so if i couldn't go hang out with her and do whatever she wanted when she wanted, i was being a terrible friend. note, she called me every day multiple times a day demanding i be with her. there were times i said i was busy and she would should still show up at my house.

One day, i told her i was sick and i had to cancel our plans for the next day. she got mad at me, instead of checking to see if i had a seizure and was in the freaking hospital; then i was done. i told her how she treated me and i couldn't deal with it anymore, and like you she blamed me for everything then tried to act like since we talked about it everything was okay. Well, that was our last conversation. i didn't even bother taking the time to tell her i wasn't going to be her friend, it would have been a waste of energy and another fight.

Now, she has alienated me from most of the town. No one else really likes her, but i can't go a lot of places without running into her. mostly because she forces herself onto people, like she was doing to me. She's convinced a lot of people i don't do things because im stuck up, not because im sick and have seizures. but if they don't take the time to ask me about it and just want to walk out of my life, no body is locking the door. they can go.

Kyndrid on January 05, 2014:

It is weird hey. I mentioned to her "none of my other friends talk to me the way I do" she just mentions back "well, they don't know you like I do, or as long as I have" something to that affect.

There is another girl I hung out as well since High School who has seen that side of me and she does not treat me like that at all (in fact none of my other friends do), she and the others treat me with respect and as an equal which is great so that blows her theory and re affirms to me that this is just this girl's problem. It has nothing to do with me.

Oh this took me years to realise how unhealthy this friendship was as well. I had just ignored her behaviour cause she was okay when she was not like that in the past.

Just glad I did not let it get to me to much before with this girl but now being in my 30's. I think as I am getting older I tend to be less tolerable of people's bullshit like this and just want people who are real and true in my life. I agree. I don't want people like that around either!

I don't even understand why people get like this with others. I mean I prefer uplifting others, making people happy. I think it is pretty sad that people feel the need that they have to bring you down to feel better about themselves. I am so glad I am not like that.

When you have good friends in your life who respect, support and encourage you compared to the toxic ones we have had to deal with Zara. You do appreciate the good friends more and learn what to look out for if you run into bad friends later on down the track and get rid of toxic people sooner. After having to deal with that in the past.

Yes it intrigues me why these types of people would still want to keep people they think so little of and treat you poorly around. I mean I would not want to be friends with someone I did not respect, trust or thought so little of.

Zara on January 04, 2014:

I agree. It is very confusing when a "friend" treats you so poorly and with such little respect and then wants to hang out with you. My "friend" will call me on the phone and want to talk for hours (mainly about herself) and send me text messages telling me I'm her best friend. Then the next time I see her she will be, as you describe above, downright rude-- whether it be aggressive comments or a not-so-subtle dig. I tried to explain that this behavior is confusing and that there is no consistency.

It took me years to realize how unhealthy this friendship was and now that I finally have I feel so liberated. Spending time with this "friend" was draining emotionally and took a hit on my self-esteem. No "friend" should ever belittle you or make you feel insecure.

I have no time for "friends" like this in my life. I have plenty of friends who respect me, support me, and encourage me to be the kind person that I am. I no longer try to understand WHY someone would think it is ok to treat others so poorly. I have accepted that this "friend" must be very unhappy with herself and that I am better off without her. I hope this helps!

Kyndrid on January 04, 2014:

Oh and I did not actually crash that bike either I slid it on purpose because I knew I was going to crash lol. But yeah. It is confusing when they still want to hang out with you, when they act like that with you.

Kyndrid on January 04, 2014:

In regards to Zara's post. When I read it I felt as if I could have written those words about this 'so called' friend I have in my life.

Known her for 15, 20 years. Ever since High School. We are both in our 30's now. I was quiet and shy back then. Not as much anymore but she obviously, still sees me that way.

At times she is fine to hang out with. Other times though she will be really judgemental, critical, point out my flaws and just down right rude.

Examples: I had done a Zumba class with her one day, she couldn't dance. In response to that "oh we found something you are better then me at" another time a group of us were at this thing. She wasn't going one week. Her older friends 10 year old son was there I was like "I will take him under my wing that week. She replied with "you would not be on the same intelligence level as him." After a small car accident, "such a (my name) thing to do" had never been in one before. So I just thought seriously?!

I even got snapped at aggressively at times for the smallest things.

Example: When I got handed a packet of chocolate to pass around to our group. I took my time with it because I did not know how many there were. She yanks the packet out of my hand aggressively in a huff murmuring that I was hopeless at such a simple task and hands them out herself. Just thought whatever and let her do it herself.

Even on FB she had a pic of us when we went bike riding and could not help but mention me crashing the bike 2, possibly 3 times. Did not mention that I had not ridden a bike in around 5, 10 years. Thought I did pretty good there considering! Ha ha. I mentioned that underneath the photo and just laughed it off.

It left me thinking WTF? Cause all I have ever been is nice to her.

Learnt to just ignore it in the past, did kill her with kindness, never took what she said personally, never lowered myself to that level. It still continued.

Now that I am in my 30's getting less tolerable of this type of behaviour.

The last straw was at this trivia thing she invited me to. According to her, I was not behaving the right way. I even got accused of ruining the night once or twice.

All I ever was, was friendly with everyone. She said I could invite other people along. I did. When my friend and I spoke quietly amongst ourselves, that was not acceptable.

Thought the host was really cute and he and I flirted occasionally. That was a huge no, no as well. Regardless of the fact that he and I were both single and that he started that. Got a hey gorgeous and beautiful from time to time. Touching on back, shoulder arm and just general chit chat other times to. Good ego boost right there. Enjoyed the attention. There was a bit of an age gap between he and I (mid 30's being I and 50 being him he looked mid 40's) though which she did not approve of at all.

When I would have even just one drink. She always advised me against it cause 'she felt responsible for me' I was 2 years older then her and would never go over the limit when driving. Roll eyes. I have gotten the 'I feel responsible for you' spiel from her before. Leaves me thinking huh?

I was in a TV studio a week ago and acted exactly the same way there. In a more professional environment. Might I add. It was a news program. Talked quietly amongst people once or twice while they were filming. No one cared. Seemed more laid back there then at this Trivia thing, which is supposed to be in a more relaxed environment.

Just feel like I am walking on egg shells when I hang out with her. Thinking is the next thing I say gonna be considered dumb? Is my behaviour around her going to be 'acceptable' today?

I also don't feel like I can be my true self around her. So do revert back to being quiet when I hang out with her. I think with myself being that way it suits her personality more. Maybe that is why she got a little bit weird on me, with Trivia. I broke out of that mould a little and it freaked her out a bit. Who knows.

In regarding this. I have distanced myself off from her the last few months. Felt bad when she has sent texts wondering what I am up to and stuff and replying that I am busy to those but just over all this bullshit from her.

She has sent texts wanting to hang out since though. Just say that I am busy but why if someone thinks that little of you, would they still want to hang out with you?!!

Smartgirlnow on January 03, 2014:

She is envious of you. Trust me. This is her way to lash out and it is sign of major insecurity. Kill her with kindness and do not let her get you down. Once you have it figured out, her stuff will not even bother you anymore. I have found that dealing with these kind of people is to limit time with them but since they are also family friends, be positive and pleasant if/when your paths cross. I would TOTALLY ignore her rude comments. I have made me my best friend and use positive self-talk to get through these situations (a few glasses of wine help too). I had a cousin like this growing up. We were like sisters but she belittled me and I was so used to this type of treatment that it felt natural so I transitioned to other bully girls through out my youth and it was not until I 'grew up' was more confident and successful in my career etc. A new friend drew it to my attention one day asking me if I was sure this was my 'best friend because she sure is mean to you'. It is almost like being in an abusive relationship, it may start of so subtle and before you know it, your self esteem is hovering at such a low ebb, you do not even realize that you are being abused! Google "Friends for a Reason, Friends for a Season" verse. It has helped me a lot when I have had painful friendship issues. Not sure if you are religious but there is also another verse from Mother Teresa: Do It Anyway. Hope this helps!

Zara on January 01, 2014:

Thanks! This definitely helps. I think the final straw for me was at my brothers wedding. She was invited along with her family (our parents are friends also which makes this all more awkward) and she always finds a way to ruin important events for me. She was calling me awkward and kept making rude comments. This is such typical behavior and I'm sick of it. It is always as though she has to be the center of attention even if it's at my expence. Is this typical of toxic friends?

Smartgirlnow on December 31, 2013:

In answer to Zara - the key is to make yourself happy. When we get happy, confident and secure in ourselves, these mean girls will not be able to subject their abuse on us. I have experienced similar behaviour from my so-called friends and having worked in a female dominated environment for 30+ years - trust me, a lot of women just want to one-up, compete and be the prettiest, smartest and most popular. Because our personality is non-confrontational and I have experienced many of the same issues you describe, these bully-type women find friends like us that put up with their put-downs so they can feel superior. It took me until I was in my 40's to get a backbone and speak up for myself. I hope I do not sound too jaded because I am not saying ALL women are like this - but I have observed a lot of it in my almost 50 years especially growing up in a large extended family with cousins, aunts, in-laws etc. Once you educate yourself on the behaviour - it really helps. Like Eleanor Roosevelt "No one can make you inferior without your consent". If your friend is work trying to explain that you no longer will tolerate her put-downs but if not, move on and you will find genuine people that do value your kindness and friendship.

Zara on December 30, 2013:

I have been in a toxic friendship for about 15 years. In recent years it has become almost unbearable and essentially had to end the friendship. I am a shyer, introverted type and this friend is very loud and abrasive. By nature I would consider myself an honest person and always try my best to do the "right" thing and treat others how I would like to be treated. My toxic friend is quick to point out my flaws and is extremely judgemental of others. She loves to bring up embarassing stories about me from years ago in large groups of people. I tried to explain how the constant criticism and the constant need to make fun of me is emotionally draining and just too much but she did not seem to get it. Instead she told me that I am too sensitive.

Am I crazy or is this manipulative behavior? How could someone argue that this childish behavior is ok? I have never had anyone belittle me the way this girl has. She continues to contact me and wants to continue the friendship but how can I be friends with someone who can't even understand that this is wrong?

Please help!

Sharon on December 29, 2013:

I am so thankful for these blogs. When you are dealing with the demise of a friendship - it is rare to find a confidant to be able to explain or understand the feelings we experience. I had a friend unfriend me on Facebook . When I reflect on the history of our friendship, she was very envious and I realize she only kept me as a 'wing man' because I was older, fatter yet if I got any attention - she would be livid and sabotage any way possible. Never ever gave me a compliment that I can re-call in our almost 20 year friendship. I always encouraged her and gave her compliments. I introduced her to my friends and she e-mail them and exclude me from things yet would never include me in her other activities. If I ever shared my crushes - she would hit on them yet later say how disgusting they were. I also am an introvert and do not have many friends and find it difficult to make friends very easily. These experiences have made me even more wary of women friends. Thanks for 'listening'.

monica on December 29, 2013:

My name is Roland monica from Houston,taxes.i never believed in love spells or magic until i met this spell caster once. when i went to Africa in June 28th 2013 this year on a business summit. i ment a man called DR omoba. He is powerful he could help you cast a spells to bring back my love’s gone,misbehaving lover looking for some one to love you, bring back lost money and magic money spell or spell for a good job.i’m now happy & a living testimony cos the man i had wanted to marry left me 3 weeks before our wedding and my life was upside down cos our relationship has been on for 2 years… i really loved him, but his mother was against me and he had no good paying job. so when i met this spell caster, i told him what happened and explained the situation of things to him..at first i was undecided,skeptical and doubtful, but i just gave it a try. and in 6 days when i returned to taxes, my boyfriend (is now my husband ) he called me by himself and came to me apologizing that everything had been settled with his mom and family and he got a new job interview so we should get married..i didn’t believe it cos the spell caster only asked for my name and my boyfriends name and all i wanted him to do… well we are happily married now and we are expecting our little kid,and my husband also got a new job and our lives became much better. in case anyone needs the spell caster for some help, email address: dromobaspellhome@gmail.com

Irythom on December 18, 2013:

And another thing... Now that I now realize that I was in a mentally abusive TOXIC friendship, I know why she "told" me that we were best friends 24 years ago. She saw that I was loyal. I'm loyal to ALL of my friends. As the years passed, I've always been there for her despite her controlling and judgemental ways. She often set the ground rules for "best friends" by saying "I'll never tell your business". "if anyone bothers my best friend, I'll kill em". So I thought she was sincere. No. She said that because she knew my loyalty would do the same with her. She married her high school sweetheart and I've never been married. I would share dating stories with her and if I found someone I liked, she would plant a negative seed about him. If I chose to deal with a guy on a "friends with benefit" level, she'll say "have a bit of respect for yourself". She's been married forever and it's easy for her to judge single life. No guy met her approval. I thought "since we're best friends", I want her to like him. So when I would say something nice about him, she'll shrug it off. She made comments about her friends/family's success's being undeserved because she was more qualified. If she didn't acquire the same things, she'd be depressed asking "what did I do wrong"? That should've made me realize more of how she was. She often called me to get her out of her depressed moods. At the time, she was well advanced in her career than me, but I gave her encouragement and took the abuse because I was loyal and that's what a best friend should be. I felt drained every time I was around her. I tried to cut her off, but she told me that my negative mood toward her was because I was grieving my father's death. I thought she was right and she manipulated herself into my life again. So, for years, I've been tolerating her because she's lost many friends being toxic. She talked about her friends cutting her off to me and I used to feel sorry for her by encouraging her that it was their problem. Shoot, I wish I'd cut of off as well. My friends warned me about her, but I dismissed it thinking "she did throw me a surprise birthday party".. or "she did give me expensive gifts for xmas, so she must've not meant the things she did to me". Bull.. Now I know she did those nice things for to feel better about treating me so badly. The last straw was that every time I would send her a pic of me at a gathering, or me with a new hairdo, or me dressed up for new years' eve, she wouldn't comment on how I looked. She would complement the others who are in the pic with me as if I wasn't there. I gave her chance after chance to prove me wrong. I sent one last pic of me and my sister hoping that she would comment on me. It was obvious that I looked different with long hair. She commented "your sister looks really nice". There's no need for me to mention it because it's not worth it. She would only justify it by saying that she didn't like my hair so she didn't say anything. But dang. What about a sideway comment like, I like your dress. Heck. She never complimented before my new look. She's toxic and now I realize that she's jealous of me. It does hurt knowing after all of these years, I've hung in there giving her chance after chance, but she always prove me wrong.

Irythom on December 18, 2013:

My so called best friend used her controlling ways to tell me that we are best friends. I put up with her crap for years. No wonder I had a pit in my gut about her. I would dismiss that feeling because she would slip up and be nice to me. Then when she needs an ego boost, she'll criticise me. It's time for her to go.

Kathleen Cochran from Atlanta, Georgia on November 17, 2013:

For more than four years this hub has generated comments because so many of us have been in the same situation. Mine was with my sister, and like you, attacking my children was where I finally drew the line. After two years of not speaking, we agreed to disagree for the sake of our mother and began a new relationship but with definite boundaries. It wasn't that I couldn't forgive. I couldn't not know what I knew about my sister. So my defenses were always going to be up when they hadn't been before. Today, we are actually quite close. The death of our mother drew us together.

My daughter dealt with a toxic friendship through high school and college. Finally as adults my daughter called her friend on what she was doing and the friend honestly made an effort to change. I think the friend could make those changes as an adult (and had seen the damage she'd done to herself) that she couldn't make as a teenager.

Many people have benefited from your hub. That's a great accomplishment.

rachel on November 16, 2013:

Toxic friend alert! Beware of friends like anna!

Michelle on October 22, 2013:

I'm glad I don't have these kind of people in my life. It's a shame that some people are so toxic. Look life is a struggle people! One looks to find love, friendship, yourself,etc why live your life just in the struggle stage? Dwelling on things that in reality don't matter, someone else's life should not concern you, if they are happy that is all you should ever want as a FRIEND. The end result is...we all just want to be happy, So criticizing and judging someone else's life is not what you do as a friend. Be a friend to someone by just being there. Friends drift apart and may not talk for a while but..it's LIFE, and it does get in the way sometimes, as you get older things become more important, family, marriages, and jobs. These things are all a sign of getting older and wiser. I respect anyone who changes for the better. A sign of immaturity and jealousy is someone worrying about themselves and saying things like, "you said we were friends but I guessed that's changed since you've got a new ...this or that."the true sign of a toxic person is someone asking you, " When did you change?" The only thing you should be asking them is why haven't you?? Change is a good word if used properly, it's acknowledging you've pointed out where you've gone wrong and fixed it. If your car tire went flat would you still drive on it? Or get out and fix the problem. If everyone did this our friendships and relationships with people would get better. So if you know someone like this article please take a step back from things let them sort out the ugliness they put on others. This is truly the best thing you can do for them as a good friend. Live life and be happy for the things you have not what you could have, its about the present, so why don't we be present and take charge of our actions. Xoxo

Janet on September 23, 2013:

I've also had a horrible friend. It's really funny though, because nobody liked her and I was willing to be her friend. She became influential and became really close to my cousin. She would always compare me and my cousin and made me feel less than her. She always embarrassed me and made me feel worthless. Than when I would stand up to her, she would act like the best friend in the whole world. She made me feel ugly inside, stole all my friends, and made me feel like the loser cousin. She publicly humiliated me and I wouldn't stand up to her. She ruined my life and I became depressed and I wasn't the same person I used to be. I had no interests and made horrible grades. I forgot who I was and became reclusive. Now that I don't have her in my life, I am much happier. I know who I am now and love life. I have changed, but I know how to stand up for myself and I respect myself. I should have stood up for myself since the beginning, but I learned a valuable lesson.

unfriend you on September 16, 2013:

I have a friend who has done most things on this blog. It annoys me to realize that she is toxic and I had to learn it the hard way. We have been long time friends. She is very nice, fun, and outgoing. While I was her friend, I had no friends. We went to the same schools. It was hard to make new friends as she saw me going in one direction, she beats me before I get there. She always wanted to be first in everything even in befriending the people that I wanted to be friends with. Many years have gone by now. She is still the same. She is very influential and tells people things that I tell her. She is a real diaster to have in life.

Sandra on September 08, 2013:

Few things that I want to add to the comment above. Lessons that I have learned is if you let things go thinking it's ok, you have made a big mistake. This would occur in the future which would only get you later on and eat you up inside. If a friend can't act like a grown up and you give them chances to change, you might as well move on and find a new friend. And be sure never let them back in your life. If you think talking to them occasionally wouldn't hurt, wrong. They would try to find every little way to get back in your life (from asking others or talking to mutual friends about you). Also, the toxic friend can also conceal her ugly side by portraying a nice exterior to everyone that she encounters and if you tell others about her others most likely won't believe you because they never got that treatment from her nor do they have the things that she is jealous of/admire of them to be her target. In addition, never fall for anyone who is too helpful. Chances are they are out to lure you, and blind fold you to their hidden agenda.

Sandra on September 08, 2013:

This post is dead on. For many years I thought I had an issue. I thought I was a bad person, but lately I have been doing numerous amount of self reflection and realized many things. I have a friend whom I have known for 10+ years. She appears to be a nice friend and gets along with everyone. As for me I am rather shy and introverted. I have don't have much friends. Over the years I have realized I have been isolated by this "best friend" of mine. All the people that I try to be friends with end up being closer friends to her and they rarely talk to me. She has kept me isolated to her own benefit and keeps me around as a constant friend all to herself. She has many friends and she would hang out with them. When I start to go off on my own to make friends she would come back instantly. I had told her about how I felt, she asks me "are you saying I'm preventing you from making friends?". On the outside she appears to be a big sister helping me with this helping me with that, but there were times that I didn't need the help but I just let her do it anyways since I didn't want to make a fuss over it. Sometimes I feel like our friendship isn't equal. I feel taken advantage of but I didn't want to tell her how I felt because they were small issues and I didn't want to appear to be needy and have princess syndrome. There were times when I get to the point of frustration and don't say anything. A lot of feelings get pent up and I think this is when I seem like the bad person. Her friends would always side with her and as for me I was by myself all isolated. I felt very depressed. She is very persuasive. She tells me how the people she hangs around thinks about me (negative things). I think the reason I kept her around because she helps me at times but what I didn't realize was she was more detrimental than helpful. She slanders and gossips and manipulates. She likes to gain people's trust and play messenger. She tells person A a negative thing about person B has said about her and then elicit a negative response from person A and goes back to tell person B. In other words she likes to create opposition between me and other people. She was toxic for sure. There were many circumstances that brought us together and it was hard to avoid her. It was a vicious cycle between us. There were times we were very close and then there were times we don't talk. I am quite simple and genuine and I usually tell her how my life is (which I think was overly stupid of me which made me an easy target). But as for her she doesn't tell you about her life unless you pry her with questions. When I realized this I began to tell her less things about me. As an introvert, I don't have much going on in life. When I don't talk as much about myself at times she probably saw me hiding things from her. She would go in depth to ask about my life. This made me very uncomfortable and yet I felt obligated to answer her questions because I am her friend. This went on for many years sadly. She had no boundary with questions and I felt violated by her at times. She always wanted what I have. I had a lot of guys liking me and she didn't. I tried to down play it during those times because I couldn't do anything it. Up to this day, I have things that she wants. I have tried talking to her less as I realized what kind of person she is. All along I thought I was the bad person but I began to see the true side of her. Late but I still have time to run for my life

Sandra on September 08, 2013:

Can I post without an account?

mew on August 29, 2013:

Oh yeah..toxic all right. I don't know why I found it so comforting to read the above posts. probably to realise I'm not alone. I cut a toxic friend from my life three years ago. This week she tried to communicate but I quickly blocked her on chat.

My friend and I met in college. I came from a troubled background and was often depressed. my friend made disparaging remarks about my depression to others and avoided me when I was low (I'd sit quietly and only reply in monosyllabic manner, no violence or anger). After a few people told me about it, I decided to work on myself instead of judging or blaming her. I turned my life around. Got a good job, an apartment, became more social, more cheerful... Then this friend started making disparaging remarks about my new life. She'd ring me up and laugh off my promotions, my new friends, my social life. If anything went wrong, she'd sit with this gleeful look on her face. Sent me cutting messages when I got rid of a toxic relative. After she got married her Mother in law and brother in law showed big interest inknowing me so she fed them a bunch of lies about me (I lived in a different city so it's not like I'd have taken over her life). The axe came when she called me and kept repeatedly being nasty despite me showing concern for her and trying my hardest to keep the conversation civil. After a while, it just got to me and I made a snide comment back, she quickly said "bye". usually, this was the cue in our communication for me to apologise and listen to her rudeness some more. I just said "bye" and hung up. changed my number the next day.

I feel really silly for having supported her through break ups and lows and difficult situations. when I look back at our friendship, I realise she made me miss good opportunities like when an internationally known photographer wanted to click my pics after seeing me at a theatre rehearsal, and she talked me out of it. Or when a group of girls invited me to a party after a talk but she refused to go so I had no choice but to accompany her back.

She's out of my life and she's staying there.

martina on June 29, 2013:

My ex toxic friend exhibited all of the above behaviors when things started to go bad with one exception: instead of going after my husband's affection, she did it with my kids. She started trying to outmom me with my own kids. That was the ultimate last straw. I sent her an email about this and she replied that she was giving my kids the extra attention I couldn't give them and she was not sorry that she is a more nurturing person than me. She is not. I broke off all contact and she is trash talking me to anyone who will listen. Now she has a new BFF. She will be next on the chopping block.

Starz on May 11, 2013:

I have had this complex relationship with my friend foe 16 years it started with her being interested in me sexually but I could not reciprocate though I loved her very much

Through the years we have kept our friendship but she is always very passive aggressive calls me only when she's down then she can be caring and flirtatious

I was always there for her evn got her a job in my work

Now she's friends with a girl half her age and is being dismissive of me

She even humiliates me in front of her

I was angry and sad too, finally I told her I was done with her, she said, good

I am so depressed week later I apologized in an email, she totally ignored that and did not respond

What should I do

Red on the head on April 02, 2013:

I watched my toxic friend be toxic to her husband, her son, her grandsons

and even a lady her brother was married to. I need to get her out of my

life and keep her out of it. She tries to invite herself over and ambushed

my ex husband out in the yard the other day. I was nice but good and rude

about rushing her off.

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