A study has found that of the people you consider friends, only 50% of them think the same thing in return.
They may just be hanging out with you because they can get something out of you or perhaps to improve their image by having a lot of “friends.”
Even if a friendship begins with mutual interest, people change over time and so can these interests. While even the best and dearest of friends encounter misunderstandings and disagreements, if they happen too often and frequently upset you, perhaps it’s time to reconsider whether or not it’s worthwhile to continue that friendship.
Psychologists Susan Heitler and Sharon Livingston point out the following signs that your friendship may be a one-sided affair that needs to be ended for the sake of your health.
1 – You’re made to compete with your friend’s other friendship
You feel jealous and dull because your friend keeps telling you how much more interesting their other friends are and how they had a great time together.
2 – When you’re together, it’s all about them and your own problems take a back seat
Your friend is quite talkative when it comes to their news but when you start to say something about yourself, they suddenly get an urgent message or have some other reason not to listen to you.
3 – Your friend heaps condescending criticisms on you but doesn’t want your own criticism of them
While honesty and constructive criticism are important in friendships, when you are constantly being humiliated with the “truth” then it isn’t healthy. What makes it worse is that this friend can even become indignant when you try to point out his/her faults.
4 – You’re the one who initiates most of the meetings
This friend may not be too interested in keeping touch with you and doesn’t contribute to your relationship. At the opposite extreme, your friend can be too clingy and demands most if not all your time and that’s not healthy, either.
5 – Your friend keeps trying to change you
And not in a positive way, either. They may say you’re always wrong, or that you need to be more forgiving, or something. But they’re always in the right.
6 – Your friend displays two extremes – either open and friendly or cold and indifferent
The inconsistency and unpredictability of your friend’s behavior constantly catch you off guard. Maybe you had a nice chat on the phone in the morning and then in the evening they ignore you and leave you wondering what you did wrong.
7 – You find yourself always watching what you say in case it sets off your friend
Your friend is like a powder keg who is ready to explode at the slightest provocation which is why you’re always tense when you’re with him/her and you’re afraid of saying the wrong thing.
While it may be difficult to let go of friends especially if you did have a genuine friendship at the start, doing so may be important for your health. Apart from the psychological discomfort caused by toxic friends, some studies have noted increased blood pressure and a higher incidence of inflammatory diseases as a result of toxic relationships.
Letting go of a toxic friend may be the hardest thing but you definitely deserve better!
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