Friendships are a bank account. And when you continue to overdraw your bank account, it is terminated. Why shouldn’t friendships? Toxic friends overdraw your friendship account over and over again, and it’s finally time to close your account.
Over the years I’ve seen a multitude of different therapists. Each one tells me the same thing: Get rid of that toxic friend. My naturally helpful, here-for-the-underdog personality has given me a handful of toxic friends who continue to hurt me over and over again, but because we are friends I let it keep happening. Even as an adult. I know it’s bad for me, and I recognize the hurt, but ending a friendship is harder than it seems.
Last year I finally learned to cut the cord on some friendship that were truly more harmful than helpful. When I talked about these people I talked more about how negatively their actions affected me rather than what a good time I had with them. So my therapist gave me an ultimatum: Either you cut the cord, or you keep feeling this way.
I ended up cutting the cord, because my own well-being and health matters. And so does yours. And that’s why I’m sharing the three ways that I cut out toxic friends from my life so I could be a happier person with friends who lift me up, not bring me down.
The Chop: Saying Bye to Toxic Friends
1. The Good Acquaintances Card
This has worked best for me, because it’s more about stepping back than cutting off. Instead of going cold turkey, limit your friendship. Don’t come out every time they want to meet for dinner. Don’t text them every day. Don’t offer to get them out of every jam. Instead, enjoy the friendship when it’s convenient for you. Put the friendship on your terms and the toxicity will be limited, and might save your friendship in the long run. Or give you a good acquaintance to meet for drinks.
2. The Confrontation
Be upfront! Invite them to meet up and tell them what’s going on and why you’re out. This can be incredibly scary, but with all the cards on the table it can be for the best. Sometimes people aren’t aware they are toxic and need someone to say something. There’s a chance that by saying something that it can help the friendship, or you can part knowing that you have nothing else to say and it’s time to move on.
3. The New Friend System
Make new friends. Surround yourself with people who make you feel awesome. Sometimes finding a new group is for the best, and you won’t know until you find your tribe. And when you’ve found them, naturally make that break. And if your friend calls you out, be honest. “They make me feel better than you do.” It’s a break up, and you found a better friend. You did what you needed to do for yourself, and they should respect that.
I hope these tips were helpful and if you’re thinking about cutting out any toxic friends, let me know if any of these helped.
Stay classy, Internet,