It's Not Just Love — Friends Can Break Your Heart Too

Photo: Dima Aslanian / Shutterstock
two friends thinking

We're always told to protect ourselves from getting hurt.

Usually, the culprits of real pain are skinned knees and broken hearts. Our parents warn us about the dangers of falling in love and remind us to always wear a helmet.

Though I'm sure they want to preserve our innocence and wonder of the world around us, we're constantly told to be careful.

What I don't think we're entirely prepared for — or at least I wasn't — is how much friends can really hurt you.

RELATED: 5 Warning Signs You're In A Seriously Toxic Friendship

People are the cause of most people's problems.

We're sad because someone rejected us or we're disappointed because someone didn't live up to our expectations.

When this happens, we tend to think that it's a romantic relationship causing the most drama, but a lot of times it comes from our friends.

I think it's universally understood that you don't need romance to get close to someone. Some of your deepest relationships are completely platonic — but that doesn't make them safe.

Friends can be dangerous because you're more likely to let your guard down.

You're not trying to impress someone like you would be on a first date, and you're not ever really worried that they'll leave you.

RELATED: 50 Quotes About Bad Friends (That You Need To Get Out Of Your Life ASAP)

Friendship doesn't have as strict of rules as a romantic relationship does, which means there's a higher likelihood of someone crossing a line they didn't know was there.

You don't break up with friends, really.

You might stop hanging out with them for a while, and then rekindle a few weeks later with not a whole lot of questions asked. You don't expect much out of your friends, except to be available to hang out every now and then.

We spend a lot of time talking about our standards and avoiding bad relationships. We need to do the same when it comes to our friendships.

Even though there's no way to be Facebook official, friendships have the potential to make your life great or a living hell.

I'm guilty of choosing friends solely on how funny they are while completely ignoring the fact that they don't support me and subtly hold me back.

RELATED: How To Get Over A Friendship Break Up

Giving anyone who doesn't support you an important role in your life can keep you down.

Good friends aren't like boyfriends. They don't need to call you at a certain time every day or buy you flowers.

A good friend is someone who's willing to be on a mutually supportive team with you.

They're as much down for a good wine and talk night as they are for some big adventure.

While they're people and you can't rely on them completely, the likelihood that they'll answer when you call them at 2 a.m. crying is much more than that of the other people you know.

While it's totally fine to hang out with a bunch of different people, be sure to identify who's good for you and who's probably not.

And then, adjust the time you spend with them accordingly.

RELATED: Why Losing Your Best Friend Is Worse Than Breaking Up With Your Boyfriend

Emily Blackwood is a writer who covers pop culture, true crime, dating, relationships, and everything in between. Follow her on Twitter.