Signs That Your Friendship Might Be Toxic

Common Times When People Walk Away From a Friend

Girl hugging friend at the train station
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You've tried and tried to keep your friendship going, and now you feel like it might be time to move on. Should you do it? Here are some signs that it might be time to part ways.

Your Friend Doesn't Want to Speak With You

Continued communication is important, so even if you and your friend are arguing it's better than not speaking with each other at all. When we fail to communicate, the argument we've just had becomes bigger. We go over it in our minds and may even assume that our friend had certain motives for causing the argument. While we're doing that, our friend is probably doing the same thing.

A healthy relationship is one where friends aren't afraid to argue because they do it with the goal of coming to an understanding. They hash things out so that their friendship remains a safe place where they can be themselves.

Even if you and your friend have not had an argument, silence usually means one or both of you doesn't care about the relationship enough to nurture it. You might wonder why your friend hasn't called, and as a result, assume they don't care. Meanwhile, your friend is wondering the same thing about you.

If your friend doesn't want to be an active part of the communication process, it may be time to leave the relationship behind. You can't keep up a friendship by yourself.

Your Friend Only Contacts You When They Want Something

It's great to help a friend out, but if that's the only reason your friend ever contacts you, it could mean they are just using you and don't really care about your relationship. Signs that your friend is using you for favors include:

  • Only contacting you when they want something from you.
  • Failure to return your calls or emails.
  • Claiming to be busy when you want to get together, but finding the time when they need something.
  • Not there for you during the important times in life.

If your friend can't connect with you except during the times when they need a favor, it may be time to cut communication altogether.

Your Friend Went off on You and Then Pretended It Was Nothing

Friends that are oblivious about their own behavior are hard to take in general. Self-awareness is important and if your friend lacks that they might generally act clueless or they might act hurtfully.

We all behave poorly sometimes, but you've got to own up to it. A friend that goes off on you, yelling at you or being rude online and then pretends like it was nothing, has shown you that you that the friendship isn't worth much to them. It's not worth it to apologize or make amends, and it certainly isn't worth addressing. When they show you this, what choice do you have but to leave?

You Don't Have Anything in Common Anymore

While it's good to have a variety of friends, sometimes you and your pal don't have a thing in common anymore and as a result, neither of you pays much attention to the friendship. Ending a friendship like this doesn't require a formal declaration; what usually happens is that you each drift apart.

Sometimes friends experience different life events and as a result, it can seem as if you no longer have anything in common with the people you used to hang out with. The good thing is that even if you walk away from this type of friendship, you may be able to pick up where you left off sometime in the future if the situation should change and you decide to be friends again.

Your Friend Betrayed You

It's great to forgive and forget, but there are times when a betrayal is too great for you to continue with a friendship. Betrayal can involve all kinds of different things, from spilling secrets to infidelity. When trust is broken, it really doesn't matter what the betrayal was because the effect is the same. Some friends are able to confront betrayal and work through the residual disagreements afterward, but for others, the friendship is changed in such a way that they cannot try again.

When you no longer feel comfortable being yourself or sharing parts of your life, it may be time to move on.