ProConnect

Sad, But True: Breaking Up With Toxic Friends

By

Sad, But True: Breaking Up With Toxic Friends

As I get older and my life becomes more complicated, I've noticed that my desire to spend time with certain friends has waned. Not that I don't love and care for them, but for various reasons, these friendships have become too complicated or too negative to warrant the effort that it takes to keep them going. How sad.

Yet I have to wonder, is this simply something that happens with age and increased stress? Or is it more? When I look back, the power of hindsight offers a few clues that these friendships were ending regardless of what was going on in my life. I don't imagine that there was much that I could have done to save them because each one had some of the eroding elements listed below.

More from YourTango: Parenting Lessons From Kirk Cameron's Anti-Gay Comment

If you're thinking about shifts in your friendships and wondering if one has become toxic, I offer you these signs that it's time to let the relationship go.

1. It's one-sided. All relationships have a natural ebb and flow to them when it comes to giving and receiving love. This giving comes in the form of listening, making the effort to get together, spending resources on the friendship, you get the idea. Most harmonious relationships work toward a balance; we want to give AND receive. The sign that a friendship is becoming toxic and out of balance is when this give and take becomes overly one-sided.

Examples of this include when you're always the one to make the calls, text, say hello on Facebook/email, ask for the girls-night, do the driving, pay the tab etc. For relationships to thrive, the balance sheet has to have some overall equality to it. Stressful times aside, we need to feel that if we took score, that somehow we'd come up even.

2. It's dishonest. Honesty and genuineness are critical elements necessary to keep friendships alive. When one or both people begin making excuses, trimming stories to leave out details or outright lying there is something seriously wrong. When you consider how busy our lives are, the friendships we have need to be ones where we can be our true selves without feeling that we need to be protective or hide the truth.

A major benefit of friendship is the gift of feeling loved and respected for who we are. When that is missing, it's a major sign that it's time to think about the relationship and if it's worth the effort.

More from YourTango: Groundhog Day: How To Apologize & Get Your Own Do-Over

3. It's overly critical. Friends are supposed to support us, if not, why have them? If we look for it, we can easily find people to tell us all the things we could do better. But is it really wise to have those critical souls in our daily lives? The truth is that people who consistently criticize us hurt our self-esteem.

Furthermore, this kind of behavior hits at two things which are seemingly more problematic: jealousy and cruelty. If someone is constantly pointing out the things we're doing wrong and makes no time to acknowledge the things we're doing right, they may serve us better if we speak with from time-to-time but certainly not everyday.

Share this with someone you love (or even like a lot)!

Let's make it
FB official
Article contributed by
Advanced Member

Melanie Gorman

Business Coach

Melanie Gorman, M.A.

SR. VP YourTango Experts

http://www.yourtango.com

www.twitter.com/melanie360

Melanie@yourtango.com

Phone: 410-923-6905

Location: Crownsville, MD
Credentials: MA
Specialties: Career, Communication Problems, Empowering Women
Other Articles/News by Melanie Gorman:

What Topics Should You Never Discuss On The First Date?

By , , , ,

You're on a first date and the guy asks you why you got divorced. Do you tell him the entire story, which lasts forty minutes, or do you brush it off and re-focus the attention on the present? If you tell the entire store, you're doing dating wrong.  YourTango Experts Senior VP Melanie Gorman is joined by relationship experts Marla Martenson, ... Read more

Why Are Gay And Lesbian Couples So Unhappy?

By , , , ,

A recent poll by The Pew Research Center found that gay and lesbians clients reported to be less happy than the average person in society. The results showed that only 18% of gay and lesbians were happy, compared to 30% of straight participants. Why the discreptency?  Life coaches and relationship experts Mary Malia, J. Cameron Gantt, Rick Clemons and ... Read more

Is Your Conflict Resolution Style Ruining Your Marriage?

By , , , ,

Do you fight with your spouse? Sure you do. All couples fight and it's actually not a bad thing. What's bad is repetitve and cyclical arguing that does not lead to a resolution but rather a bigger problem.  Relationship Experts Sue Butler, Andre Moore, Cheryl Gerson and Christopher Smith are joined by YourTango Experts Senior VP ... Read more

See More

Recent Expert Posts
Crazy

Guide to Becoming a Soulfull Woman Understand Your Beliefs

Once you understand where your beliefs about yourself came from, you determine what's really YOU

Flirty Talk

7 Reasons Why You Have a Fear of Love

Dr. Martha Tara Lee shares 7 reasons you have fear about love and 3 truths you can take on board.

Summer Couple

Ditch Your Need for Certainty: Cultivate These Nine Traits

Sometimes we find ourselves on the precipice of a decision and become paralyzed. We hesitate ...

Ask The Experts

Have a dating or relationship question?
Visit Ask YourTango and let our experts and community answer.

Resources
How to find the right pro for you
10 Reasons Mental Health Pros Should Join YourTango Experts

10 Reasons Mental Health Pros Should Join YourTango Experts

YourTango Experts can help your business go from good to great.

10 Steps To Improve Your Coaching Business

Take your coaching business from mediocre to great in no time…

Frequently Asked Questions About YourTango Experts

Thinking of joining? Here's all the facts you need to know to make the most of your membership.

Getting Your Guy To Join You In A Therapy Or Coaching Session

So how can your get your strong, self-reliant, superman to talk to an Expert with you?

Therapist/Counselors: Who We Are & What We Do

What exactly does a therapist/counselor do and can they really help?

See more resources>
HOT STUFF!
FROM OUR PARTNERS