Have you ever had that friend who made you feel less than? The one who drained your energy and whose presence made you feel sick to your stomach?
Like so many things in life, you tend to gravitate toward what you already know -- even if what you have experienced in the past was not positive. If you grew up being bullied, dominated, or controlled by a parent, for example, you may be attracted to a friend who does the same, because that is what is familiar, your comfort zone... and you know how to do that.
Unhealthy relationships can challenge one's self-esteem and even sometimes cause physical illness. Here are 10 signs that you may be in a toxic friendship.
10 Signs You Are In a Toxic Friendship
1. When you are with this person, the conversation revolves mainly around her. She rarely asks you about your day, your work, or your life.
2. When you talk with her or when you are together, you feel less-than, diminished, and may cause you to question your own value when you are with her.
3. Your friend often makes comments that are passive-aggressive; not outright insults, but rather more like back-handed compliments that make you uneasy.
4. Your own life begins to suffer because of the things you do for her: you may begin to miss or be late for your own appointments; you put off taking care of yourself in order to do a favor for her; or you no longer have time to pursue your own hobbies or activities that make you happy because you are spending that time doing things that take care of her happiness.
5. Other friends and loved ones notice how one-sided your relationship is and remark how your friend and her actions remind them of a previous unhealthy relationship you were once in.
6. Other relationships in your life are beginning to suffer. You may start to lie to other friends about when you are meeting this friend because you know they would disapprove.
7. When you are together, you tend to feel sad and anxious, instead of at ease and happy.
8. You find yourself giving things like gifts and emotional resources on a regular... without receiving anything in return, even gratitude.
9. When something wonderful happens in your life, she does not celebrate with you, but instead, either remains silent or finds something to find fault with your circumstance... and deep down you know that she could care less.
10. You experience headaches, stomach aches, or other physical symptoms when you are together, or when you have planned to get together.
If you recognize your relationship with someone in more than a few of these examples, it may be time to let the friendship go... for your heart, your soul, and your well-being.