Sparking joy sounds like the biggest cliché you heard in 2019, but it has a ring of truth in it. No matter how sad or happy you feel, nothing makes your heart warm up more than a friend who is there for you at your best and worst moments. When time reveals that the friend you counted on is like a low quality Zara dress, is it time to toss the friendship in the donations box?
As someone who’s struggled with friendships all my life, it hurts to think about the new friend whose behavior often makes me question the friendship. Although I mainly like to blog about fashion, beauty, travel and get real with your Man Crush Mondays, I’ve been beginning to realize that as much as you look up to me as your resident kween, I am just a girl who deals with everyday struggles like you.
Given that I never had an easy time making friends at school, I always felt that having to keep around friends was a personal challenge for me as I had to break up with some whose actions broke my heart.
Even though we have times when we almost contemplate about ending a friendship, the simple principle on who to keep in your life goes on like this:
Despite this fuss-free KonMari method, there’s no “perfect” friend as we often make mistakes and fix them in a friendship. If you feel that you are having a hard time deciding on keeping a friendship or unable to define the types of red flags your friend’s been sending, here’s a lil’ guide on the types of behaviors you need to steer clear of:
- Mr. Me
Does this person like to hang out with you when none of their friends are available? Does he insist on having an entourage around him or bail on plans when you wanna have a one on one? Does he constantly push to make you meet up nearby wherever he is (even when he knows that you don’t have much access to meet up where he lives)? Also, does he like to text you for advice that concerns himself or make plans that only revolve around him? If you hear from your friends or acquaintances that some of his closest friends have dipped out on him, is it a sign to distance yourself?
After all, this friend doesn’t get to be called Mr. Me for nothing. As Mr. Me, he will expect ALL of his friendships to be based on his wants and needs. No matter how many times you want to suggest an activity that concerns your interests, he doesn’t bother to care about you unless certain activities intersect with *his* interests. Ditto when it comes to celebrating your accomplishments as he only wants you to celebrate *his* accomplishments. (Seriously, isn’t the whole point of a friendship to celebrate your successes TOGETHER?!)
Whenever you two go out and you’re the one that has to take care of him all the time, does he think twice if his actions are making him selfish? No. If he’s stuck in an emergency, he knows that you will always drop everything for him. But, will he do the same for you?
If Mr. Me is constantly making you center your life around him, chances are that he does it to all of his friends, too. Even though you may have had fun times with Mr. Me, it’s time to leave a blank space on selfish friends.
2. The Burn Bookkeeper
You know you love her for all the boiling hot tea. As much as her stories entertain you, does she ask you to spill some tea about yourself ? If she continues to peg you with questions about your other friends, do you think that she is one to be trusted? Also, do you worry that she will spill all the tea on your deepest, darkest secrets to *her* friends? Even though she’s a great storyteller, have you ever dared to ask yourself if you will be inside her storybook of spilled secrets?
If she gossips about all of her friends to you, there’s a high chance that she will find the opportunity to dish about you from her Burn Book. When she spreads a rumor about you and you find out that it’s her, the Burn Bookkeeper never likes to out herself as the original source. No matter how many times you want the truth from her, it’s a bummer that her half-assed denials will do nothing to placate your friendship.
3. The Free Therapy Sessions Friend
This girl is all about venting her problems to you. Every single hangout becomes an appointment with the therapist. No matter how many times you want to lend an ear, do you find that her never ending laundry list of problems tend to overwhelm you? Also, do you get bothered when they don’t care to listen to your advice no matter how many times you’ve told them the solution?
If you find yourself feeling the crosshairs at this type of friendship, it’s time to give her space to short her shit out. After all, you are not a paid therapist! Unless this person has a mental health issue like depression, it’s likely that you can’t turn this person away from your life forever as she wants you to stay with her during her darkest moments. The only time when you need to clear out Ms. Free Therapy Sessions is when she suddenly dips out of your life when things get better for her.
4. The “Hi and Bye” Friend
Does this person have a tendency to ghost when you try to get ahold of where he is after he’s agreed to meet with you and suddenly NOT show up? Does he suddenly ditch you when he’s found a new S.O. to spend time with more than you? Also, do you find yourself having to constantly reschedule plans just to fit his schedule?
While bailing out because of legit emergencies (e.g. sickness, religious event, a bad traffic jam, sudden work assignment or family events) is OK, flaking out too frequently for light “emergencies” is NOT OK! Ditto with suddenly dipping out to spend time because of a new boyfriend/girlfriend. After all, what kind of friendship is this when he says “hi” only to suddenly say “bye” when the time you both agreed to meet up doesn’t work out for him at the last minute?
But if he’s made the effort to meet up with you, do you wonder why he often keeps you waiting? If so, it seems like he doesn’t wish to invest in you as a friend. But when he’s in group situations, does he have a habit of bringing plus ones you don’t know too well just to ditch you when they all wanna go somewhere else without you (in spite of you inviting them)?
In all honesty, it’s selfish and not to mention, extremely irresponsible of him to make you push your life around him. The next time he wants to make plans with you, just make sure you have no empty space for him in your planner!
5. The Freeloader
Do you two constantly go to meals together where you mainly pay for the food most of the time? Does she stay at your house and NOT contribute to anything (e.g. cooking, offering help or cleaning)? Do you feel uncomfortable when she brags about how another friend is paying for all the expenses while ‘fessing up to you about her money problems?
Why let your money in the bank go dry when you spend it all on someone who pays you dust?! After all, you truly don’t need a freeloader to drain your bank account. The next time she asks you to pay for the next meal, time to ask her to pay up.
6. The Littlefinger
Ugh. The WORST character on GoT unfortunately exists IRL, too. If you aren’t familiar with the TV show, Littlefinger starts drama, causes people to fight over each other on the basis of falsified information, masks lies as truths and targets people’s emotions.
If you have a friend who is master manipulator, you got played by a Littlefinger in training. As one of the worst kinds of friends, she’ll go out of her way to make you trust her, secretly bring you down with passive-aggressive fake encouragement/questionable advice/”blunt honesty” and 99.9% of the time, she can turn on you at any second without you knowing until you hear the word from someone else that she did it. When you are faced with the truth and want to confront her, she’ll deny it. Even though she knows she did something wrong, she’ll say the two magic words just to make herself be on your good graces. So, if you feel that you can’t REALLY trust her, isn’t it best to GTFO and run?
No matter how precious our time is, we don’t deserve bad friends who make our lives feel worse. By putting a pause on the friendship, it’s nice to refresh and check off the red flags. Before you unfollow, mute him/her or delete your friend’s number, thank him/her for the good times you two enjoyed and the lessons he/she taught you in this situationship.
*P.S. Toxic friends will also complain as to WHY they frequently LOSE friends!
*P.P.S. If you are the type of friend who has a poor track record of maintaining multiple long-lasting friendships, I hope this guide can help you change your behavior for the better!