The tough thing with friends is that even while we love and appreciate them very much, there are times when that same affection may make us blind to their poor choices and how negatively they affect our lives. It’s crucial to be aware of the typical red flags that someone is not only toxic but also bad for your mental health.
What is a red flag in a friendship?
You’ve probably heard the phrase “red flag” used frequently in reference to romantic relationships. Red flags in friendship, on the other hand, are less frequently discussed. Let’s begin by doing this.
A “red flag” is a cautionary symbol. You get the sense that something is wrong for no apparent reason. These are also referred to as gut feelings or intuitive hits. Unfortunately, sometimes our prior experiences prevent us from distinguishing between good and harmful.
An example of a red flag would be a stop sign or a flashing red light, as I explained in my essay about green flags in friendship. The red is supposed to alert you to the danger and instruct you to stop moving forward.
I’m hoping that the warning signs I’ve provided below will cause you to pause and reflect before delving too far into a poisonous friendship.
10 Warning Signs of a Toxic Friendship
1.Your friendship is built on gossip.
Because I’ve lived and realized that gossip is bad for friendships, I talk about this topic frequently on this blog. When I made the decision to stop engaging in gossip, I discovered that some of my connections lacked true depth.
Frequently, if they gossip to you, they will also gossip about you. This raises serious red flags, especially if the person feels at ease spreading rumors about others as soon as they meet you.
2.Jealousy is involved.
Jealousy in friendships can be challenging to spot because it’s not always a straightforward issue. Jealousy can appear as your friend failing to share opportunities with you. It can appear that your friend is intentionally offering you terrible advise or failing to recognize your accomplishments.
Jealousy has no place in friendship.
3.They intentionally make insulting jokes.
Even after you’ve mentioned it, if the person in question continues to purposefully make jokes that make you feel uneasy, that raises serious concerns. Take that as a hint that this person doesn’t just disapprove of you; they also don’t value your friendship.
Related : 10 signs of a fake friend
4.Not respecting boundaries.
In a similar vein, a friend is not someone who disrespects your limits. In fact, breaking boundaries in friendships is a major warning flag.If, for instance, your friend talks about what your ex is doing despite your request that they not, then they are not respecting your boundaries.
Another illustration is when a friend broaches sensitive subjects that you’ve asked them to avoid discussing in front of your partner.These are only a few instances of boundaries; boundaries might be straightforward or considerably more complex.
5.Always change the subject to themselves.
This not only raises a red signal in a friendship, but it also annoys me personally. A warning sign may be raised if your conversations frequently come off as one-sided and self-centered.
Please be aware that while this can be a warning sign, it might also be an indication of poor communication. Use your pal as a sounding board or your own discretion on this one.
6.Gaslighting. Manipulating. Guilt-Tripping.
Run away from a friendship if you notice any signs of gaslighting, manipulation, or guilt-tripping. Since they can result in abuse, those are key warning signs in any relationship.
7.There’s a lot of conflict.
It may be debatable, but in my opinion, there shouldn’t be a lot of tension in friendships. In contrast to romantic relationships, friendships are not burdened by additional stressors like obligations, money, juggling household duties, etc.
The friendship is probably not suited for you if it seems like you spend most of your time with your friend arguing, getting annoyed, or getting angry at each other.
8.They don’t show much interest in your life.
Genuine interest in your life is the mark of a true friend. They are interested in learning about your achievements, setbacks, and daily activities. You’ll observe that they show their concern for you by keeping tabs on you, asking how you’re doing, and bringing up particular issues in your life. They want further information. They want you to know how much they like hearing your opinions.
9.Feel taken advantage of or used.
Feeling abused or exploited by a friend is another toxic friendship indicator. You might experience this occasionally if you are codependent. Other times, people may outright take advantage of you and your abilities.
An individual spending time with you because you treat them with dinners, cash, or gifts is an evident example of being taken advantage of. Additionally, someone might be utilizing you in a covert manner to pass the time. If your friend just hangs out with you or engages in conversation with you when they have nothing else to do, that could be an indication. For instance, while they are with others, they don’t react to your messages or extend invitations to events.
Remember that there is a thin line between someone setting boundaries and someone who is merely talking out of boredom. Considering carefully.
10.You often feel judged.
It goes beyond the “head to toe look” that most of us have come to learn when we feel scrutinized by a friend. It can be a friend who constantly criticizes you for your errors. Underhanded remarks concerning your diet, attire, or decision-making may also fall under this category.
Another instance of judgment might be someone who consistently offers counsel without evoking compassion or empathy.
A Word From Psychology Saga
I am aware of how challenging it is to develop and maintain friendships. I won’t, however, compromise my morals or my self-respect in order to maintain a friendship. You must not do it either.
It could be time to call it quits with a friend if you’ve noticed that many of these warning signs apply to your friendship. Sometimes, having a decent chat is sufficient.
Source : 7 Signs You’re in a Toxic Friendship