Toxic relationships are very common and we all know someone or the other who has been in one.

But what no one ever talks about or acknowledges is when we’re friends with toxic people. We usually don’t question our friends’ personalities and accept them for who they are.

But friends can also cross lines and do more harm than good to us. Here are some signs that’ll tell you if you or someone else has a toxic friend. If this is how they make you feel, let them go now.

1. They’re critical of everything you do/say.

A toxic friendship involves a lot of criticism thrown your way. Your actions/thoughts are considered redundant and it often hampers your self-confidence. You might feel like you’re inadequate at everything you do. Friendships should offer support, and not criticism at every point in your life.


2. They’re jealous of your achievements.

Friendships should not come with jealousy but a toxic friendship does. And that often hinders you from sharing any good news with your friend because you’d rather not be at the receiving end of jealousy from them.


3. They bully you into giving in to their demands.

Bullying should never be accepted anywhere and if you’re bullied in a friendship, it’s a complete no-no. These kind of friendships often land you in trouble with scenarios you would have rather avoided.


4. They try to dictate your love-life.

There’s a fine line between being controlling and being considerate but there comes a point in everyone’s life where you would want to make your own decisions. Especially when it comes to choosing a partner, a friend can advise you but not take total control of your choices.


5. You always end up babysitting them.

They say you should always be there for your friends when they need you. But it’s only valid if they’re there for you in return. You shouldn’t have to babysit your friends ALL THE TIME because they’re going through a hard time. But when they never return the favour, it’s time to give this friendship some thought. Your troubles are equally important and if you cannot talk about them with someone who talks about their problems, it’s not a pleasant experience.


6. You can’t share your secrets with them.

Friends share secrets all the time. But if your secrets become the world’s knowledge because your friend couldn’t keep it to themselves, it’s probably not a good idea to remain friends with that person. A friend should be trustworthy and not go around spilling your secrets to everyone.


7. You find it tough to introduce them to other people.

Introducing your friends to other people is a part of our lives. But if we have to think twice before doing so, there’s something that’s not right about that. Getting your leg pulled in good humour and getting humiliated right where it hurts all the time are two very different things. Getting belittled by your friends, especially in front of other people can hamper with your self-esteem and there’s nothing healthy about that.


8. They are self-absorbed and lack empathy.

No pain is bigger than the other but if you feel like your problems are redundant because your friend compares them to theirs all the time, it’s because they lack empathy. Friends are supposed to empathise with you when you need it and telling you that it’s not worth being upset over because they’ve had it worse makes you feel shit about sharing it in the first place.


9. They’re not reliable and it’s impossible for you to count on them for anything.

If your friends rely on you, it’s absolutely cool because that’s what friends are for. What’s not fair is when you’re never at the receiving end of it. No friend should expect you to be at their beck and call but inconveniently be unavailable when you’re in need of them.


10. They never pitch in and you end up doing all the monetary contribution.

Friends pay for each other all the time. It’s absolutely fine to help a brother out once in a while but what’s totally uncool is when you end up being in-charge of paying all the bills all the time.


11. They impose their own personal judgements on everything you do.

Judging anyone is wrong, let alone a friend. Judgements can play with your mind and especially when it’s done by someone you call a friend, it’s not healthy. Getting judged for every decision you make by your friends makes you feel like you’re not worthy enough to control your own life.


12. They’re spiteful and unforgiving.

We make a lot of mistakes in our life but a friend is supposed to understand and forgive you because if they don’t, who will? But being stuck with people who become vengeful because you faulted at something can be very damaging to your relationship with them. 


If any of these signs bring a particular friend to mind, it’s time for you to either confront them or get rid of them.