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Topic : Ending Toxic Friendships

Number of Replies: 486
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Created on : Thursday, July 07, 2005, 09:20:14 am
Author : dataimport
It can be hard to extricate yourself from a friendship gone bad. Share your stories and strategies for handling this sticky situation.

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July 22, 2005, 4:03 pm CDT

toxic

there is no harm in letting her believe that...just let her pretend that the relationship is important...so long as you dong completely cut her off...

 
July 23, 2005, 3:31 pm CDT

Ending Toxic Friendships

If you have no good, friendship feelings for someone, it's better to let them go. Even though your friend values what little relationship you have, it would be a service to her to let her go and form real friendships with someone who wants to spend time with her.
 
July 24, 2005, 10:26 pm CDT

Is this a toxic friendship?

I have known J for 20 years. She's funny, artistically very talented, and has been a good friend to me and to my husband, as we have been to them. About a year ago, I took up a particular artistic pursuit, and although J and her husband didn't have the funds for her to participate, she really wanted to take the class, and we arranged that J's husband would do some renovations for us, and we would pay for her to take the class.  We didn't have much money at that time (or now, for that matter), but it seemed a reasonable way to say thanks for J's husband's help, which I know he would have happily given for free.  Both J and I really enjoyed the class, and both decided to continue on. 

Long story short, although J has brought a high level of creativity to her work in this medium, she hasn't attained the same level of skill that I have. I'm not tremendously creative, but I've mastered the mechanics of the work quite well, to the point that our instructor has invited me to be (the most junior) part of his "build team" for creating his own work.

Six weeks ago, J and I were both given the opportunity to attend a workshop in another city. I booked a hotel room, and offered to share it with her; she refused very ungraciously, staying in college residence for about what the shared room would have cost. While we were there, she was quite cool to me, and refused my offers to work with her, though I solicited her help and both sought and accepted her advice on some of my pieces, J was scathing about my apparent desire to "go home with a lot of product".  I actually don't think there's anything wrong with product; I have sales for some of my pieces, and that in part has offset my costs in this medium. 

I'm hurt by her behaviour, and although I'm trying to realize it's not necessarily about me, it's hard not to take it personally. I value the friendship -- am I a chump?

 
July 25, 2005, 8:14 am CDT

ending toxic friendships

 me and my friend have been friends for 8 yrs. we met my freshman year in high school, her sophmore year. about 2 years ago, she changed a lot. she became very boy crazy, jelouse, and she started to steal. she would hit on my boyfriends, and even changed her clothes infront of them and me. She slept around a lot. and my new live-in boyfriend, cant stand her. we get in to arguements about her all the time, b/c he doesnt like her in our house. i actually cant find anybody that truly likes her. she doesnt take care of her self, and has bad hygiene, and is overwieght and wears clothes that are way to small.  she got arrested for stealing, i bailed her out, and now she stole again and is back in jail. everytime i talk to her she makes me feel so guilty. and i feel i should help her. but i know that if she  gets out, shes going to want to stay with me, and i dont want her around my b/f. not really worried about him. she has no where to go b/c nobody wants her living with them.... not even her parents. should i just leave her in there? maybe this is a lesson. i dont know. i want to help my friend, but i dont think its s good idea for me to assossiate my self with her anymore.. that sounds awful, i dont know.

 
July 26, 2005, 8:35 am CDT

Ending Toxic Friendships

Quote From: nicole984

me and my friendhave been friends for 8 yrs. we met my freshman year in high school, her sophmore year. about 2 years ago, she changed a lot. she became very boy crazy, jelouse, and she started to steal. she would hit on my boyfriends, and even changed her clothesinfront of them and me. She slept around a lot. and my new live-in boyfriend, cant stand her. we get in to arguements about her all the time, b/c he doesnt like her in our house. i actually cant find anybody that truly likes her. she doesnt take care of her self, and has bad hygiene, and is overwieght and wears clothes that are way to small. she got arrested for stealing, i bailed her out, and now she stole again and is back in jail. everytime i talk to her she makes me feel so guilty. and i feel i should help her. but i know that if she gets out, shes going to want to stay with me, and i dont want her around my b/f. not really worried about him. she has no where to go b/c nobody wants her living with them.... not even her parents. should i just leave her in there? maybe this is a lesson. i dont know. i want to help my friend, but i dont think its s good idea for me to assossiate my self with her anymore.. that sounds awful, i dont know.

Maybe the way to help your friend is to put her in contact with some counselling.  If you keep bailing her out, she won't need to change her behaviour, and that's what you're after, I think.  Why do you feel guilty?  And, for the record, I think your instincts about not wanting her to live with you are good ones.

 

This is very hard.  I know you want to help, but by picking up the pieces for her, you're making it possible for her to continue to mess up without having to face the consequences, and that's no help at all, really.  Though she probably won't see it that way.

 
July 26, 2005, 5:40 pm CDT

What to do??

I need some advice... my friend had asked me to join her on a short vacation with some of her family. I agreed many months ago and paid her my portion of the trip expenses. About a month or so before we were suppost to leave on our trip, she received a better offer to go somewhere else.  Knowing she could only pick one of the two trips, she picked the better offer.  Now, I'm out of a few hundred dollars.  She mentioned I could go ahead with her family -without her there and not knowing them too well at all.  Maybe I'm totally out of my head, but I don't feel thats any position for me to be in. I'm not very happy with this friend or the situation right now.  Lately, she's been making me feel as if it were my fault and getting very hateful with me. I honestly wouldn't be this upset if there weren't money involved, but there is, and to me, it's quite alot.  What should i do?? 
 
July 27, 2005, 1:46 pm CDT

Ending Toxic Friendships

Quote From: dreamer313

I need some advice... my friend had asked me to join her on a short vacation with some of her family. I agreed many months ago and paid her my portion of the trip expenses. About a month or so before we were suppost to leave on our trip, she received a better offer to go somewhere else.  Knowing she could only pick one of the two trips, she picked the better offer.  Now, I'm out of a few hundred dollars.  She mentioned I could go ahead with her family -without her there and not knowing them too well at all.  Maybe I'm totally out of my head, but I don't feel thats any position for me to be in. I'm not very happy with this friend or the situation right now.  Lately, she's been making me feel as if it were my fault and getting very hateful with me. I honestly wouldn't be this upset if there weren't money involved, but there is, and to me, it's quite alot.  What should i do?? 

you should explain to your friend that you are not comfortable going with her family, considering you dont know them well, and the only reason you agreed was because she was going. maybe talk to her about the way shes been acting, and demand your money back. that was very irresponsible of her and should have stayed with her commitments. its unreasonable for her to change plans and then get upset at you. if it was me i would demand my money back. because a few hundred dollers doesnt come by easily.

 
July 29, 2005, 11:19 pm CDT

Jealous

Quote From: callrachel

I have known J for 20 years. She's funny, artistically very talented, and has been a good friend to me and to my husband, as we have been to them. About a year ago, I took up a particular artistic pursuit, and although J and her husband didn't have the funds for her to participate, she really wanted to take the class, and we arranged that J's husband would do some renovations for us, and we would pay for her to take the class.  We didn't have much money at that time (or now, for that matter), but it seemed a reasonable way to say thanks for J's husband's help, which I know he would have happily given for free.  Both J and I really enjoyed the class, and both decided to continue on. 

Long story short, although J has brought a high level of creativity to her work in this medium, she hasn't attained the same level of skill that I have. I'm not tremendously creative, but I've mastered the mechanics of the work quite well, to the point that our instructor has invited me to be (the most junior) part of his "build team" for creating his own work.

Six weeks ago, J and I were both given the opportunity to attend a workshop in another city. I booked a hotel room, and offered to share it with her; she refused very ungraciously, staying in college residence for about what the shared room would have cost. While we were there, she was quite cool to me, and refused my offers to work with her, though I solicited her help and both sought and accepted her advice on some of my pieces, J was scathing about my apparent desire to "go home with a lot of product".  I actually don't think there's anything wrong with product; I have sales for some of my pieces, and that in part has offset my costs in this medium. 

I'm hurt by her behaviour, and although I'm trying to realize it's not necessarily about me, it's hard not to take it personally. I value the friendship -- am I a chump?

This sounds like a very simple case of jealousy to me. J may be creative, but you are better than she is with this medium and her jealousy is showing itself in several of her actions:

 

1. The fact that she didn't share a room with you even though it would have been comparable in cost to where she did stay.

 

2. The fact that she refused your offers to work with her.

 

3. The fact that she made an issue of you wanting to go home with a lot of product.

 

Perhaps J is uncomfortable with the fact that you have more money than she does and more than that, that you've got more talent. It's unfortunate that she is letting that come between your friendship. The same thing happened to me many years ago and it's never easy to deal with. Unfortunately, it's not likely that J is going to confess her jealousy to you, but you need to have a candid talk with her and let her know that her behavior is hurtful to you.

 

Be prepared for her to get very defensive and try to turn the situation around on you. Very few people are self-aware enough to admit to their poor and hurtful behavior. Almost always they try to justify it. You can decide your next move based on J's reaction to your discussion.

 

 

 
August 8, 2005, 10:18 pm CDT

Just went through this

I had a friendship of almost 10 years with a woman who was incredibly funny and fun to be with. We shared so many interests and our sons were only a few days apart in age. There were so many reasons to admire her but she was/is an incredibly self absorbed and high maintenance person.  

  

I spent years trying to only see the good parts of this friendship and ignoring the toxic parts but after a while, it became impossible to see the way the toxic parts were effecting me and my family. I'm a bit naive about some things so it took me a long time to understand that she was a prescription medication abuser as well as an alcoholic. I tried to help her but her downward spiral continued over several years until it became hard to hold on.  

I began seeing the differences in us and stopped being able to see any common goals or morals. She lied so easily, she was as vocally happily married as I am but I found out she had an affair which really goes against my morality but suddenly, as her friend, I was put in the position of knowing about it.  

Her husband also had affairs so their marriage broke up and she made herself the priority instead of their son. Her self medication got worse and she lost site of her role as a parent. I realized I was spending hours on the phone with her trying to get through to her, trying to find the good person I used to know but finally, she broke the camel's back and I had to tell her I could no longer be her friend. 

  

I miss the woman I used to know but every day of the past 6 months has been a relief and the past month or so, I stopped feeling guilty about having "deserted" her and began to enjoy my life without all the conflict in it.  

  

I'm a reasonably intelligent person who never would have entered into a friendship like this one but it was the slow devolution of it that held me so tight. I like who I am much better without her in my life and I can't believe how much of my day was spent holding her hand or talking through her problems.  

 
August 11, 2005, 11:06 am CDT

toxic friend

Quote From: cinemaven

I had a friendship of almost 10 years with a woman who was incredibly funny and fun to be with. We shared so many interests and our sons were only a few days apart in age. There were so many reasons to admire her but she was/is an incredibly self absorbed and high maintenance person.  

  

I spent years trying to only see the good parts of this friendship and ignoring the toxic parts but after a while, it became impossible to see the way the toxic parts were effecting me and my family. I'm a bit naive about some things so it took me a long time to understand that she was a prescription medication abuser as well as an alcoholic. I tried to help her but her downward spiral continued over several years until it became hard to hold on.  

I began seeing the differences in us and stopped being able to see any common goals or morals. She lied so easily, she was as vocally happily married as I am but I found out she had an affair which really goes against my morality but suddenly, as her friend, I was put in the position of knowing about it.  

Her husband also had affairs so their marriage broke up and she made herself the priority instead of their son. Her self medication got worse and she lost site of her role as a parent. I realized I was spending hours on the phone with her trying to get through to her, trying to find the good person I used to know but finally, she broke the camel's back and I had to tell her I could no longer be her friend. 

  

I miss the woman I used to know but every day of the past 6 months has been a relief and the past month or so, I stopped feeling guilty about having "deserted" her and began to enjoy my life without all the conflict in it.  

  

I'm a reasonably intelligent person who never would have entered into a friendship like this one but it was the slow devolution of it that held me so tight. I like who I am much better without her in my life and I can't believe how much of my day was spent holding her hand or talking through her problems.  

Years ago I also was in a friendship like this one that you describe, it was so draining!! The woman I was friends with was pretty much exactly like your friend. She didn't realize how draining she was, when I tried to tell her in a nice yet firm way, she turned it around and made herself the victim...I should have known!! She was very, very comfortable being the victim and she wasn't about to give that role up anytime soon. Our last conversation on the phone, I ended up hanging up on her. Then she wrote me a letter, going on and on about  how she can't believe "your doing this to me!!" etc. It was actually laughable. Now, I can spot a person with her personality from a mile away, which is a valuable asset to have. You also might have this asset, it will prevent you from being led into another toxic relationship like that.
 
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