Almost everyone has those ex-besties that they were once inseparable from, but sometimes it’s not just that you drift apart but it may also be that there’s some drama that goes down. Each time something happens you learn a little bit more about life and yourself, so here are 12 lessons from a toxic friendships.
1. Compromising is okay
There is nothing wrong with compromising if someone’s upset. And if people are communicating with you that they’re lacking something that’s really healthy. But a compromise doesn’t mean that you have to put yourself out just to make the other person happy: it means learning to accept each other and meet in the middle, not fighting over what you’ve done for each other.
2. BUT if you have to dim your shine it’s not healthy
If you have to tone down your passions or loves because you’re ‘annoying’ then that’s not great. We all have our quirks, but true friends accept us with them (even if they find it annoying). And if you’re good at something you shouldn’t have to make yourself appear less good just for them.
3. If you’re the ‘project’ be wary
I have lots of personal experience of this, and I’ve realised now that that was what I was. I was very emotionally immature and innocent when I moved city, and I became the ‘plaything’ of a few people. It was a mission to get me to flirt and get drunk, and now I see that actually when I grew up a bit and started spreading my wings, that was when people started getting angry at me.
4. Don’t be pressured
Don’t get me wrong, a little bit of friendly pressure can teach you lots, however there is a difference between introducing you horror movies and doing things that you’re not always comfortable with. Don’t feel like you have to do things just because other people do, whether it be drugs (pretty extreme I know) or just wearing things you’re not comfortable in.
5. Mother knows best
My mum can weed out bad friends long before anyone else in my life. She doesn’t stop me from being friends with them or living my own life, but she does caution me when she gets weird vibes from someone. I denied it for so long, but the more I live the more I really do see that my mum does know best.
6. You don’t need to explain your actions to anyone
If you don’t want to do something, cool. If you don’t want to get drunk, cool. I’ve been shouted at before for having a headache and not going clubbing. I’ve been called a fake friend and a bitch and so I really have got to the stage now where I don’t care what people call me.
7. True friends support you, they don’t get jealous
If you achieve a success that your friend doesn’t they shouldn’t get angry at you or act salty because you got there first. They should celebrate with you. As one of my favourite quotes says: “a candle loses nothing by lighting another candle.”
8. It’s okay to want alone time
If you don’t wanna hang out with someone all the time that is fine. Tell people. And this goes both ways: it’s more hurtful to be lied to about why they don’t want to hang out with you than to just be told that you want alone time.
9. Don’t make yourself dependant on anyone
This was a lesson taught to me by my high school English teacher, who always used to tell us girls in her class that “no matter what, you must always have your independence.” If you rely on someone, whether it’s a platonic friendship or romantic relationship you should always try to keep your freedom, and don’t let yourself lose all sense of a ‘way out’.
10. Know that it’s okay to end a friendship if you want to
It’s fine. It hurts to be on the receiving end and it hurts to do it but in the end it will feel far more worth it when you’re not facing the stress you had before. Be true to yourself, really.
11. You will survive even if you feel like you’re all alone
You BFF just left your side and you feel empty without them. But you will survive. Friend breakups can be worse than relationship breakups, so give yourself time to heal and remember the good times before moving on.
12. Learn from any mistakes you made
It takes two to tango, and a toxic friendship isn’t just about what they do but also what you do. When you feel ready, evaluate how you acted and whether you can improve for the future.
So there are my personal 12 lessons from a toxic friendship. Have you ever experienced a toxic friendship and do you have any more lessons which I didn’t include? Let us know down below!
Featured image: Oleksandr Pidvalnvi via Pexels
Hi! My name is Ellie and I live in London. Currently in university studying journalism, I love all things writing and theatre and spend a lot of my time seeing shows on the West End.