Could you have a toxic friendship?


Huddled together and secretly pressing their hands to their lips, the Mean Girls are a perfect example of a cliquey, toxic friendship. Do not make Cady Heron’s mistake and get tangled in a web of drama and gossip!

Stellana Erickson, Staff Reporter

  Friendships are not always as they seem. Friends are supposed to be the people that you go to when you are sad and know just how to cheer you up, listen to you when you talk about the things you love, and bring up inside jokes that are still as funny now as when they were new. Other friendships fade away with time with no bad feelings, but what happens when they do not fade? The ways to spot toxic friendships are usually very subtle and can be easily missed or confused. 

  Arguments are normal when you have known someone for a long time. You will not always agree on everything. However, if this recurs frequently, there may be a growing strain on the relationship. You should be able to listen to each other, especially when it comes to giving advice. Telling someone what they want to hear when it comes to an important issue is never the answer. Good friendships can start to sour if secret grudges start to be held or the arguments do not get resolved. Your friend should not antagonize you or make you apologize every time, leaving you feeling guilty about something you know is not your fault. Another sign is to remember the impression left on you after a conversation with them. Leaving it with a pit in your stomach is a sure sign of hurt feelings, while still trying to hold in laughter is a sure sign that their joke truly was harmless.   

  But if you discover that your friendship is turning into this, what then? Deciding whether to brush off a sharp-edged remark or to have a conversation about it can be difficult. Do not worry about prolonging the issue by bringing it up with them. They may not know how you feel if you bury your feelings deep down. Instead of a heated confrontation, simply let them know that what they said hurt you. “Communication is key within any relationship, so I think you should just talk to them about it,” junior Isabella Harris commented about what to do in this situation. Them apologizing and respecting your wishes means that things will likely improve, but if they dismiss it or get upset with you, maybe that friendship will not. 

  It is okay to leave a friendship. They do not last forever as we might wish, and the most important thing is your own happiness. Letting someone hold you back and tear you down is an obstacle that can be overcome. It does not make you petty or dramatic to slowly ease your way out of a situation that is hurting you. Surround yourself with people that help you grow and are easy to smile with.