Toxic Friendships

Good friends are like family, except you get to choose them. Having a good support system and being able to rely on friends is vital for your health and wellbeing. We rely on our friends to build us up, support us, for comfort, for fun and joy. So what do you do when your friends starts to do the opposite? How do you deal with a toxic friend? Toxic relationships are hard to get rid of but even harder to keep. The impact on your mental and physical health can be brutal.
WHAT IS A TOXIC FRIEND?

These people will put you down rather than pull you up. They will offer little to no support and in most cases make you feel worse. You feel anxious and nervous before you see them, then drained and sad afterwards. They might make comments that hurt you, or only talk about themselves. In most cases, you will being to feel that they aren’t really a friend at all and just someone you hang out with. Why would a friend do this? There are many reasons but it is usually related to their own self-doubt and anxiety. They might be jealous of you, or self-conscious about themselves. There’s no excuse for being a toxic friend but it’s important to notice the reasons that could push them to treat you in this way.

HOW IT CAN DAMAGE YOUR HEALTH

Feeling uneasy, stressed, nervous, self-conscious, upset, angry. These negative emotions are exactly the opposite of what you should be feeling around your friends. These negative feelings can also spread to your body. On top of the mental issues that arise through anxiety, depression there are physical elements too. You could experience high blood pressure, a lower immune system and IBS as a result of the stress.
WHAT TO DO

Don’t ignore the situation. Your friend will start to think that this is the correct way to behave and will form habits that will inevitably
affect your mental and physical health. Don’t ignore it. Speak to them. find out what is causing them to treat you in this way. show your strengths by offering to help them overcome whatever is negatively affecting them.
CUT THEM OFF

Some people will not change. You can’t keep trying and making excuses if someone is not willing to fix the friendship. Don’t be afraid to call it quits. If something is bad for you, you try to cut it out of your life. IT should be the same with people, and relationships. If its bad for you then cut it out. Don’t waste your time feeling miserable. Accept that the friendship is toxic and leave it behind.

Words Contributed by: Kira Crabtree

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