Signs You Need To Get Rid Of Toxic Friends

by Carina Wolff

It's never easy to end a relationship or break up with a friend, but sometimes these unhealthy relationships can take a toll on our wellbeing. It's hard to know when to draw the line, but there are certain signs that indicate it's time to remove toxic people from your life, especially if it begins to wear down on you. The company you keep is important for more than just going out and having a good time — it affects the rest of your life.

"Studies find that in many ways, friends consciously and unconsciously influence each on issues like eating and drinking styles or optimism versus pessimism," says psychiatrist Dr. Gail Saltz, host of “The Power of Different” podcast, over email. "Investing in relationships with people who have numerous bad or unhealthy behaviors can drag you down too. Also, relationships where the other person tears you down or criticizes you often can affect your own self-esteem."

All relationships do come with some disagreement and conflict, but if someone only brings negatives to your life, it's time they've got to go. If you want to make some changes to your social circle, consider these 11 signs you need to remove some toxic people from your life.

1. Every Conversation Is Passive Aggressive

Conversations should be straightforward and honest, not laden with hidden insults. "Try not to be in contact with the kind of person who is passive-aggressive," says psychoanalyst Laurie Hollman, Ph.D over email. "They say things that sound measured in tone, but in word, they cut deep. Avoid them at all costs or if you can’t, remember this is their problem, not yours."

2. People Are Jealous Of You

Your friends should be inspired by your accomplishments, not jealous. "Try not to be in contact with people who are easily envious or jealous of your successes," says Hollman. "They may be so rivalrous that they undercut what you have to say and how you say it. Try to be aware of this trait so you don’t take it seriously and let it undermine what you’ve accomplished."

3. You Frequently Hear Sexist Comments

No one should never feel degraded or inferior just because you are a woman. "Be wary of sexist remarks that diminish what you do," says Hollman. "Speak up if you wish, or at least keep in mind this kind of comment is meant to lower your confidence and it’s not deserved by any stretch of the imagination."

4. People Try To Put You Down

Toxic people will prey on your vulnerabilities to try to lower your self-esteem. "Surround yourself with others who complement you and compliment you," says Hollman. "Hold your head high [find people] that are content with your weaknesses and flaws. We all have vulnerabilities, but don’t need to be reminded of them."

5. Your Peers Don't Listen

We all have those friends who want to get coffee, but then talk your ear off about their life, not even letting you get a word in. "You should remove people who constantly make everything about themselves, their issues, their lives, and are self-serving, self-absorbed, and narcissistic," says relationship therapist Larry Shushansky over email. "This will drain the life out of you, and no matter how hard you try, you will never have a good relationship."

6. Your Relationships Are Unequal

Whether it's with your friends, someone you are dating, or even a co-worker, a relationship shouldn't be one-sided. This means you shouldn't always be the giver — or the receiver for that matter. "Look for relationships of equanimity," says Shushansky.

7. Your Needs Aren't Being Met

Everyone has different ideas of what a friendship or relationship entails, but we all have basic needs, and sometimes these can change over time. "When the person you’re in a relationship with just doesn’t have the capacity to respond to what your needs and wants are, 'the well is dry,' says Shushansky.

8. You're Not Being Prioritized

"[Toxic people] always put other things and other people in front of you, leaving you feeling unloved and uncared for," says Shushanksy. If someone doesn't take the time to make plans with you and leaves your text messages ignored, it might be time to say "buh-bye."

9. There's No Room For Compromise

It's okay to disagree with someone from time to time, but if they're completely unwavering, you may not be a good pair. "If you've discussed the issue or problem numerous times and the person cannot or will not try to change the dynamic, it's time to part ways," says Saltz. If you've had a few face-to- face, direct "this is the problem" and "this is what I can do and what I'd like you to do," conversations and nothing changes, it's not a healthy relationship to be a part of.

10. You Dread Meeting Up With Them

You should be excited to see your friends, not hope to avoid them. "You [shouldn't] dread being with them, try to avoid it, and feel struck in an optional relationship," says Saltz. "If they are a friend, but you keep finding ways to never get together because you hate it, time to end it and let them move on."

11. You're Engaging In Self-Destructive Behaviors

"Being with [toxic people] leads to self-destructive behavior that is really damaging to you," says Saltz. "Like with them you binge drink, black out, do risky and dangerous behaviors, use drugs, overeat a lot." Although no one is responsible for your own actions, you want to spend time with people who encourage you to have healthy habits, not dangerous ones.

It can be hard to cut people out of your life, but you have to make a decision that is best for both your mental and physical health.

Images: Pixabay (12); Bustle