Is it a stable or toxic relationship? Am I a toxic friend? Is my friendship toxic? It can be hard to tell when you’re not really thinking about the characteristics of your own friendship or relationship. Sometimes, the signs are there, but we’re not too aware of what they actually mean. Here are some key indicators to help you determine if you’re stuck in a toxic friendship or relationship.
It’s a stable relationship if you and your friend give and take
Any kind of stable relationship should be a two-way street. If one person is constantly giving and endlessly working to maintain a connection, then there’s something wrong. Sometimes people find themselves in tough situations or need a little more that week, which is fine. But constantly giving and never taking – or having to opportunity to take – won’t keep the relationship afloat.
It’s a toxic relationship if you and your friend are often arguing
Friendships and relationships aren’t meant to be stressful. If you’re anything but happy to see this person, there may be a problem. Communication is key, but when there are constant arguments and unrealistic levels of expectations, it’s time to cut loose from this toxic person. It can be daunting at times, and potentially dangerous. For tips to help you find a safe way out, read more here.
If you and your friend or partner are able to communicate well without constant bickering, it’s healthy
Occasional disagreements are healthy. Don’t think healthy relationships and friendships are smooth-sailing because they aren’t. Like everything else, there are hiccups along the way. Agreeing all the time can cause repressed emotions and can lead to resentment. In a stable relationship, both parties are able to safely voice their opinions without conflict (or very minimal). And if you need some tips to help you learn more about healthy communication, check out our new book, 100 Tips For Growing Up by Lindsey Glass
Constant competitions are never healthy
Nothing is wrong with a little competition here and there. But when friends are constantly basing their self-worth on besting the other, it’s time to cut ties. That friendship is toxic and needs to either be dealt with or ended soon. Depending on the level of competition, this can result in physical and mental health problems. Bullying and hazing can also be a result of this kind of toxic friendship. If you’re wondering if you’re in a toxic friendship, take the quiz: Can You Spot A Toxic Friendship?