I have learned a lot about friendships. I have learned that some friends are really good and some friends can also be really toxic. Within the past few years, I really started doing a lot of reflecting on both the good and bad friends I’ve had in my life. Something I have found myself wondering a lot about is how actually work through toxic friendships.
In my experience, I have found myself in a few situations with friends that I would have considered toxic. Removing yourself from those situations can be extremely difficult, especially when we want to give people the benefit of the doubt to excuse their behavior. I have given a lot of people more chances than they deserved; I just always believe the best in people and that they have the capacity to change and improve.
Unfortunately, some people will never change. I spent a lot of time convincing myself that I was just being dramatic or upset over some of the things that were going on within the friendship.
Sometimes, when dealing with a toxic friend for a long time, the best thing to do is just to take a step back and realize it’s okay to go your separate ways. It’s also important to focus on the good friendships instead of the toxic ones. It’s so easy to get caught up in all of the negative energy and wallow in it, when the best way is to just remove yourself from the person and focus on the people that make you feel fulfilled and positive.
A friendship that feels one-sided will eventually get tiresome, and anyone who makes you feel guilty for doing what is best for you and taking a step back to take a breather is someone that might never change their behaviors. It is easy to get caught up in the cycle of feeling bad for them, or that you might start to second guess if you should even step back at all. But people always show their true colors, and after enough time you may begin to realize the best way to get out of all the friendship heartbreak is to just take a step back; the best thing may be to not have that person in your life anymore.
Drawing this conclusion or coming to this decision usually does not come easily and can even come after a few years of friendship. Some friendships may naturally drift apart in general without any sort of toxic situation, and it happens. But removing yourself from a toxic friendship may be essential to moving on and moving forward to better friendships.
Friendship is really meant to be easy; it should not be heartbreaking or hurtful. Removing any toxic friends from your life can be a really helpful part of moving forward and rediscovering what it is like to have good and true friends in your life.