Types of Toxic Friends and Other Toxic People To Kick Out Of Your Life

Types of Toxic Friends and Others To Kick Out Of Your Life

Time To Break Up: 20 Toxic People to Kick Out of Your Life — Stat!

We all have one or two “friends” who drag us down instead of make us better. If you have someone in your life who’s taking more than they’re giving, it might be time to go your separate ways

by Ronnie Koenig

The half-assed friend

She forgets to return calls for months, doesn’t acknowledge your special occasions and is generally MIA. When you do make plans, she’s always rescheduling at the last minute or showing up super late.

“You should dump this ‘friend’ because she does not respect your time or your life,” says LeRoy. “You need to spend that time with those who do appreciate you as a friend and who are interested in your life.”

The verdict: Time to move on to someone who has friendship to give.

The Frenemy

She’s your friend, but also your arch enemy. How is this fun?

“Women deserve friendships in which they support each other’s triumphs as opposed to bringing each other down,” says Jessica LeRoy, psychotherapist and founder of Center for the Psychology of Women. “Some women who are a bit more insecure may believe that they deserve this type of friendship, or that this is normal female behavior. In reality, supporting each other makes us feel much better about ourselves and our friends.”

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Friendships Take Effort – by both parties

I was at another site where this letter was published.

A few people actually opined at the other site that friendships do not take effort, because really great friendships are effortless, that if you are putting in effort, something is wrong.

What a bunch of crap that is.

I can see how that view might be true in the “honeymoon” phase of a new friendship, where you feel you’ve just met someone who really “gets” you, and they are a pleasure to be around, but sure enough, as time marches on, the euphoria of the newness of it all will wear off, and you will begin to notice flaws with your new friend. Your new friend may begin to do or say things that hurt or offend you.

Once a friendship (or marriage) begins to age, it will take SOME effort to maintain and keep going, especially if there are disagreements.

Here’s the letter and response:

Ask Amy: Keeping adult friendships alive takes effort

DEAR AMY: I had a huge fight with my best friend of 10 years. She called me phony, among other hurtful things. She says she doesn’t care to have a friend like me because I don’t reach out to her enough and that I make no effort to make plans with her. I agree we haven’t seen each other often enough. But Amy, she doesn’t ask me to make plans either, which is why I am so thrown off by this.

This is the third time we’ve had this argument and have stopped talking for weeks each time. I feel horrible because she accuses me of not being there for her without giving me any hint that she needs me. She now says she is done with me. She has hurt me, and I don’t know if I should contact her. Should I forgive her and try to repair this friendship, or let it die? — Sad Friend

DEAR SAD: I shared your question with Julie Klam, author of “Friendkeeping: A Field Guide to the People You Love, Hate, and Can’t Live Without” (2012, Riverhead).

Klam responded, “I think you owe it to yourself and your best friend of 10 years to have a conversation. If that’s too difficult, you should write a letter. She is accusing you of neglecting her and you are naturally feeling defensive.

“If for a moment you can drop your defensiveness and describe how you imagine she feels, you might be able to work things out rather than abandon each other.

“If she’s open to it, make a monthly plan that you can both stick to, so there is always a date on the books. As adults, our lives are so packed with family, work, life obligations that our friendships can tend to fall by the wayside, but you both need to make the effort together or it isn’t going to work. If she isn’t responsive, at least you’ll know you’ve tried.”
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Related post at this blog:

Friendships – Are You The One Always Making the Plans or Initiating the Phone Calls?

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Please be sure to read the most important post at this blog:
A Warning About The Friendship Blog – Toxic – Unfriendly Bullied Bullies Trolls Dr Irene S Levine

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Friend Poaching – when your friends friend each other and ignore you

A list of links on the topic of Friend Poaching (also known as friend napping and other terms).

I am not necessarily in full agreement with all material to which I am linking.

The Friend Poaching Syndrome

Don’t Poach My Pals They’re Not on The Menu

Quotes:

The consummate party-thrower Carole Stone, author of Networking – The Art of Making Friends, insists that one must be philosophical when it comes to sharing contacts. “I wholeheartedly believe that you shouldn’t be possessive when it comes to friendships,” she says.

“You will get a lot of pleasure from bringing people together, and if you do happen to lose one or two along the way, that’s a sacrifice worth making.”

Stone says that if you meet people at a social event and want to invite them for drinks, good manners dictate that you ask along your original hostess as well – at least on the first occasion.

Thereafter, the gloves are off and you are perfectly at liberty to book that summer break in Italy together, should you so wish.

When ‘social poachers‘ snatch your friends – CNN.com

Quotes (advice) from the CNN page:

• Be inclusive. “It’s good manners to ask your friend to join you the first and second time you hang out with the new person,” says Lavinthal.

• Branch out cautiously. Just as parents need to spend time individually with each of their children, says Yager, friends need one-on-one time, too. “Point out to your friend that spending time with just your new friend does not diminish your feelings for your old friend. Make an effort to spend time with each of them individually so your old friend won’t feel left out or pushed aside.”

• Prepare for hurt feelings. Rejection and anger are natural reactions to friend poaching, says Roy-Jarboe. “As you start to spend time with your new friend, realize that there will be hurt feelings. Talk to your original friend about what she may be feeling. Give her a chance to express her feelings. Don’t get defensive — this is a natural response.”

Losing One Friend to Another

Beware of Social Poachers

This seems to defend the practice of friend poaching:

Things that can be Poached

I detest the Jezebel site, but here’s an article by them:

“Social Poaching” Is The New Euphemism For Friend-Snatching

I can’t say that I’m in total agreement with this page (“Friend Poaching: The Social Crime of Friend Theft“), as the writer sets out too many nit picky rules about when, how, and where to acquire your friends of a friend.

Friends are humans with their own lives, ability to make their own decisions, and preferences and free will, but the person who wrote this behaves as though your friends are your property at your command:

Friend Poaching: The Social Crime of Friend Theft

Friend poaching: When friends bond and leave you behind

Here are some quotes:

Making friends through friends is a well-worn route to new relationships and certainly can be done without hurt feelings. But if handled poorly and without respect for established relationships, it also can drive a wedge between friends.

Jealousy is a factor at every age, said Jeffrey Parker, a developmental psychologist at the University of Alabama, Tuscaloosa.

….Poaching can be driven by competitiveness, a need to expand a social network, busy lives that make it hard to meet people and, of course, a real connection with a new person, Smith said.

Good friends already have vetted their network, and it is easy to go through someone you trust. And some people take it too far, relying completely on friends to establish networks. Smith calls them “serial” poachers.

….Most people learn early on that friendships are not static. One near-universal experience is the first time you lose a friend to a boyfriend or girlfriend, said psychologist Parker.

But even as adults, poaching can draw out our insecurities.

…Poaching usually stems from a lack of respect or care to make sure you are not hurting someone in the process. But there are ways to avoid a poach and transition into new friendships without leaving angry friends in your wake.

There are a few ways to help ease the transition, Smith said, such as being open with the connecting friend that you like their friends. Incorporating the new person into group events rather than immediately inviting that person over to your house for dinner will help keep it more natural.

The transition also can be as simple as e-mailing the hostess and telling her you really loved her friend and that it would be fun if you all got together. And resist gossiping about the original connecting friend, Smith said.

“We can’t possibly protect our friendships from poaching unless we lock our best friends up in a room somewhere,” Parker said. “The reality is as we grow up we have to learn to weather these things, to remain flexible, to be patient with these experiences.”

It’s the simple lesson learned in grade school — share with others.

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Please be sure to read the most important post at this blog:
A Warning About The Friendship Blog – Toxic – Unfriendly Bullied Bullies Trolls Dr Irene S Levine

Why You Should De Friend Your Ex Friend on Facebook

Quite often the advice one sees for romantic partners can also apply to platonic friends. I think this is another example:

Why You Should Defriend Your Ex on Facebook

Breakups suck. Whether it was a peaceful or crazy split, trying to get over your former man [or platonic friend] will be hard. Want to move on fast? Defriend him [or her] on Facebook.

By Dara Adeeyo

According to a new study from the Cyberpsychology, Behavior, and Social Networking journal, keeping tabs on your ex’s life online will keep you kinda hooked on him [or her]. In the study, researchers evaluated the Facebook usage, emotional recovery, and personal judgement of 464 participants after they went through a breakup. The results were totally shocking.

Study participants who kept tabs on their exes, felt more upset about their breakup than those who didn’t. Researchers also discovered that Facebook, uh, stalking an ex basically makes you feel as crappy as you would if you were forced to hang with him as “just friends” on a regular basis.

Bottom line: Taking a look at what your ex is up to is just not a good idea if you want to move on.

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Please be sure to read the most important post at this blog:
A Warning About The Friendship Blog – Toxic – Unfriendly Bullied Bullies Trolls Dr Irene S Levine

Friendships – Are You The One Always Making the Plans or Initiating the Phone Calls

Are you in one of those friendships where you are normally the one who initiates phone calls, e-mails, and get togethers?

Do you sometimes feel as though you’re putting more effort into the relationship than your friend, and does this either annoy you a lot or hurt your feelings, or both, or make you feel used or taken for granted?

Realize that it’s up to you to make these feelings known to your friend, or nothing will change.

Don’t assume your friend will realize on her own how you feel and adjust her behavior accordingly. Don’t be afraid of how your friend may react when you tell her how her lack of effort bothers you, and yes, she may get angry or tell you she feels hurt. That’s fine should that happen.

It’s better to openly air these grievances with your friend than to keep bottling up the negative emotions, because as it is right now, you are in a sham of a friendship and not the real thing, unless your friend picks up the slack and starts contributing equally.

As psychologists Cloud and Townsend advise, you should not bear most or all of the responsibilities in a friendship, or in keeping one alive.

Here is what they say about the issue, and I think most women need to focus on points number three and seven on this list, above all the others:

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Remember the Marsha-Tammy friendship [that was mentioned previously, where Marsha did all the work in the friendship; Tammy never planned their days out, nor Did Tammy ever initiate phone calls, which really upset Marsha]?

One friend doing all the work and the other coasting illustrates the compliant / nonresponsive conflict. One party feels frustrated and resentful; the other wonders what the problem is. Marsha sensed that the friendship wasn’t as important to Tammy as it was to her.

Let’s analyze the situation:

1. What are the symptoms?
Marsha feels depressed, resentful, and unimportant. Tammy, however, may feel guilty or overwhelmed by her friend’s needs and demands.

2. What are the roots?
Marsha always feared that if she didn’t control her important attachments by doing all the work, she’d be abandoned. …

3. What is the boundary conflict?
There could be two boundary conflicts here. First, Marsha takes on too much responsibility for the friendship. She’s not letting her friend bear her own load…

Second, Tammy doesn’t take enough responsibility for the friendship. She knows that Marsha will come up with activities from which she can pick and choose. Why work when someone else will?

4. Who needs to take ownership?
Marsha needs to take responsibility for making it too easy for Tammy to do nothing. She sees that her attempts to plan, call, and do all the work are disguised attempts to control love.

5. What do they need?
Both women need support from other friends. They can’t look objectively at this problem without a relationship or two of unconditional love around them.

6. How do they begin?
Marsha practice setting limits with supportive friends. She realizes that she will still have friendships in which each friend carries her own weight if she and Tammy break off their friendship.

7. How do they set boundaries?
Marsha tells Tammy about her feelings and informs her that she will need to take equal responsibility for their friendship in the future.

In other words, after Marsha calls, she won’t call again unless Tammy does.

Marsha hopes Tammy will miss her and begin calling.

If worst comes to worst and the friendship atrophies due to Tammy’s unresponsiveness, Marsha has gained something. She’s learned it wasn’t a mutual connection in the first place. Now she can grieve, get over it, and move on to real friends.

8. What happens next?
The mini-crisis changes the character of the friendship permanently. It either exposes it for a nonrelationship – or it provides soil for the rebuilding of a better one.

(by Cloud and Townsend)

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Please be sure to read the most important post at this blog:
A Warning About The Friendship Blog – Toxic – Unfriendly Bullied Bullies Trolls Dr Irene S Levine

Hard To Make Friends

It is a mystery how some people make friends so easily while others struggle with it their whole lives.

This was also published in Ask Amy today.

    Dear Amy: I’d like some feedback from you and your readers.

    If I meet 100 people, I hit it off with two or three of them and launch a friendship, some 96-97 of them have no particular reaction to me, and then every now and then someone just takes an instant disliking to me — without my ever speaking a word to them.

    What’s up with this? Do other people have this experience or is it just me?

    I’m too embarrassed to ask my friends.

    — Socially Curious

The Cess Pool That Is The Friendship Blog / False Accusation

Please be sure to read the most important post at this blog:
A Warning About The Friendship Blog – Toxic – Unfriendly Bullied Bullies Trolls Dr Irene S Levine

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A former fellow “Friendship Blog” member e-mailed me recently (again) to tell me to go take another look at the Friendship Blog, at one thread specifically, which I did.

(I discovered on that follow-up visit to the Friendship blog and forum that Dr. Irene Levine made a false accusation about a poster (me), which I discuss towards the end of this post.)

Here was the thread this person wanted me to look at, which is a thread begun by member Wonder Why (see also: Yep, Wonder Why is Codepdendent):

40s and full of acquaintances but no really close friends

The person who e-mailed me thinks Wonder Why sounds nutty in that thread.

The things that struck me about her main post and her follow up posts are as follows:
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Singles and Friendship

There are several very good essays in the Living Single blog at Psychology Today about what it’s like to be never married or single and how that impacts friendships in this blog about singleness.

Some of the essays talk about how older (as in over 30 – 35 years old singles) often get left out of invitations by married couples and ignored.

I do not agree with all views in all essays at the site, but some are interesting.

Here are a few of the essays (all are by Dr Bella DePaulo):

Ditched by Friend Who Got Married: Can You Relate?

What Friends Know That Others Don’t

Do Married Couples Slight Their Family Members as Well as Their Friends?

Family Talk and the Dissing of Friends and Community: Part 3 of Singles with No Kids

Slighting Friends and Family: Do Couples Become Less Couple-y Over Time?

Single Women in 1960s and 1970s TV: What Should We Make of Their Relationships?

Falling In And Out of Friendship

Missing the Point of Friendship and Single Life

The Pain of Being Excluded Because You are Single

Do You Have a Council of Friends?

Article about Friends Breaking Up with Friends and Advice on How to Do It

Please be sure to read the most important post at this blog:
A Warning About The Friendship Blog – Toxic – Unfriendly Bullied Bullies Trolls


It’s Not Me, It’s You [A page about friendship break ups, from The New York Times]

If you would like to read the whole page, please click on that link.

Comments left by visitors to the page, which appear at the bottom of it, are also illuminating.

I see some of the same bitterness there by women that I saw at Dr. Irene’s “Friendship Blog.” Some women cannot handle or accept that a friend has broken up with them, or that friendship break ups are a part of life, so they become very bitter, angry people.

Here are a few high lights from the page:

    by Alex Williams
    January 28, 2012

    ….Not so in the real world. Even though research shows that it is natural, and perhaps inevitable, for people to prune the weeds from their social groups as they move through adulthood, those who actually attempt to defriend in real life find that it often plays out like a divorce in miniature — a tangle of awkward exchanges, made-up excuses, hurt feelings and lingering ill will.

    ….People start “dropping ‘starter friends’ from the early bachelor days, or early work associates, or early couples with little children like yours,” said Mr. Horchow, who wrote “The Art of Friendship: 70 Simple Rules for Making Meaningful Connections”…

    Psychologists consider it an inevitable life stage, a point where people achieve enough maturity and self-awareness to know who they are and what they want out of their remaining years, and have a degree of clarity about which friends deserve full attention and which are a drain. It is time, in other words, to shed people they collected in their youth, when they were still trying on friends for size.
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