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5 Warning Signs You’re In a Toxic Friendship

Most of us have been in a toxic friendship at some point. If you’re reading this, odds are that you might be in one now . . .

Read on for signs that your friendship may be toxic, plus advice on what to do next.

We’ve all seen the countless romantic comedies where the inevitable break up scene comes. Usually it is because one of the partners was not being fully transparent, was not showing up in the relationship, or was not ready to fully commit themselves.

The next scene usually features a newly single actress eating a pint of Ben & Jerry’s straight from the container in clothes she’s been wearing for three consecutive days while she is lying on the couch watching a romantic comedy.

In other words, we’re used to seeing break ups and break downs when it comes to romantic relationships.

We must take the leading role in our friendships when it comes to our own happiness.


Yet no one showed us what to do when we have toxic friends in our lives who are not honest with us, who don’t show up for us, or who aren’t ready to commit to building a long, lasting relationship with us.

And because we’ve seen one too many scenes without this scenario, it may be hard to break down the facts to see if a break up is the right move in your friendship too!

We’ve got you, friend!

In this article we are giving a whole new meaning to CHICK FLICK! It may be time to flick your toxic chick out of the movie of your life!


Friendship Plot Twist

It’s not always a happy ending. Movies are forever setting unrealistic expectations. In the movies we do see about friendships, they often get portrayed as lasting forever.

In our real life, we can’t just sit back and watch our friends show up in the same disappointing ways the same way we might rewatch a bad movie on the big screen.

You get to rewrite the script on what a valuable, worthwhile, symbiotic friendship means.

We must show up for ourselves by putting a stop to it – by pressing the metaphorical pause button. We must take the leading role in our friendships when it comes to our own happiness. And sometimes that means producing a choice when you decide it’s best to move on.

5 Signs You Might Have a Toxic Friendship:

These signs will help you understand when it’s time to move on from that toxic friendship.

1. She Takes Center Stage

You can account for every millisecond of her day including when she needed to pick broccoli out of her teeth at her networking event. You can recite back how many cups of water she drank and what new fad diet she’s on.

Or you can sense how successful or scared she is feeling just by the tone in her voice. Most importantly, you know that she does not know the same things about you because you can rarely get a word in edgewise!

If your friend is someone who talks often but rarely listens, desires to be seen but cannot see how they affect you, or takes everything you say to heart when you open your heart, then it may be time to close the curtains on this toxic friendship.

Her stage only has space for one. She’ll probably be too busy in her own soliloquy to realize you left anyway.


2. She’s Still the Same Character

We’ve talked about the law of attraction in various articles.

This law states that like energy attracts like energy. This means that the friends in our life are reflections of us.

When we are vibing with them, we are vibing at the same level – possibly in terms of interests, hobbies, or stages in life, but also quite literally in terms of vibration of frequency.

As we grow individually, elevate our frequency, and get casted into even bigger roles in our personal life, we can outgrow other people in the process. They no longer can play the same part they’re used to playing when we have evolved into a completely new character.

We want people in our lives that add value, not detract from it or make us feel like less than.

Here’s another way to think about it.

In film, synergy is defined as the interaction between two or more organisations to produce a combined effect greater than what could be achieved on their own.

In short, it’s the idea that 2+2=5. Same equation can apply to friendships. We want people in our lives that add value, not detract from it or make us feel like less than.

If our friends are not willing to grow with us, will not contribute to or cooperate in our success, or if they’re comfortable staying comfortable by sticking to their outdated friendship script and character, then it’s time to recognize the friendship has turned toxic so you can turn the page.

3. She’s Trying to Win an Award

Friendly competition can be so much fun and can even revitalize a relationship as long as it’s…well.. friendly! There can be a fine line, especially if your buddy is always racing to beat you to some – unbeknownst to you – finish line!

For example, you got her a cupcake and a balloon for her birthday with pure excitement to give it to her because red velvet is her favorite. On your birthday, you open your front door to what you thought only happened in movies!

There is a giant, dancing human inside a cupcake costume that spits sprinkles at you while twirling fireworks. Now don’t get us wrong, we love a good surprise, but the point we’re making is that it depends on intent.

Did she do this to make herself feel better or to make you feel like your best self because she truly appreciates and loves you?

Put differently, does she always try to one up you or is she genuinely not interested in keeping count? Does she realize the true gift is always presence and not presents?

Other examples that demonstrate if your friend may be seeking validation of what a great friend she is rather than altruistically being a great friend to you include:

  • Asking you questions but not genuinely listening to your answers
  • Trying to fix your problems without you soliciting her help
  • Making promises or commitments but not following through on them

It shouldn’t feel like she’s checking boxes to complete the criteria it takes to win an Academy Award instead of honoring that friendship is the reward!

Your companion should not be acting like a friend, but rather she should just be an authentic friend – because either way you will always see her true character. She shouldn’t be more interested in picture reels that show how great she is to you rather than being real with you.

But if she is, then that’s an indication that she’s a toxic friend.

4. She’s Not Interested in Auditioning

In a real movie audition, the actress would spend a copious amount of time preparing and learning every nuance about their character – what makes her smile, how she would dress, what she would do in a specific situation.

In friendships, we want our girlies to know these things about us as well. We want our gals to show us that they are genuinely interested in us and invested in earning their place as a permanent character in our life.

Like auditions, building lasting bestie bonds takes continuous practice, rehearsing, and dedication.

If you have a friend that just assumes her role as the Louise to your Thelma – be it due to the length of time you’ve been friends or the history of your relationship for example – without doing the actual work to maintain that title, then it’s time to have her exit stage left.

15 Simple Yet Powerful Ways to Improve Your Relationships

We’re not looking for extras in our lives that can be replaceable and don’t need to audition. We can be selective when it comes to who we allow in our setting!

We want friends who value our perception of them. We want friends who don’t take our friendship for granted or as if it’s simply owed to them.

We want friends who show up as the audition version of themselves at all times – they intentionally show us their best parts, they highlight things that bring value to our experience, and they make us giddy with excitement and anticipation to see them again!

5. She’s Dramatic

Everyone at her job isn’t pulling their weight and it all falls on her – and it’s the same scenario at every job she’s ever had. The waitress gave her a side eye for no reason – so she didn’t leave a tip. Her parents messed her up as a child – that’s why she can’t do (X).

Or her neighbor stepped on her lawn – she called the cops again. She has the worst luck in the world – so she doesn’t even try. Sometimes it’s soothing for our soul to vent to our soul sisters, but it should not get to a point where you feel like your soul is being sucked dry.

A healthy dose of complaining is okay but if your gal pal can’t carry a normal conversation with you that doesn’t include venting, then like in the movie Apollo 13, “Houston, we have a problem.”

We want friends who value our perception of them. We want friends who don’t take our friendship for granted or as if it’s simply owed to them.

An important question to ask yourself when trying to determine what is actually going on behind the scenes of your friend’s mind can be, “Is drama always finding her or is she always finding drama?”

Basically, if talking to your confidant constantly feels like you’re watching a telenovela, then it sounds like a toxic friendship and it may be time to say adios to her!

You are the Director of Your Life

So if you’re in a friendship that feels like a bad movie, then it’s time for you to act like the director of your life by metaphorically yelling, “CUT!” If they’re not ready to edit their behavior, then you don’t need to take another shot with them.

You can take ACTION by showing them where all the exits in the theater of your life are located!

End the Scene on Toxic Friendships + Rewrite the Script!

Recognizing a toxic friendship can be a hard pill to swallow at first. But know that saying no to toxic friendships sets a healthy boundary moving forward, so you can say yes to healthy friendships!

Remember, you are the superstar and you get to choose who belongs in your story or not.

You get to rewrite the script on what a valuable, worthwhile, symbiotic friendship means. Then, the best part of all is you will get to cast a newly opened supporting role of “awesome friend.”

And that’s a WRAP!

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Abbey Acevedo

Abbey Acevedo is a Youtube motivational speaker, audiobook narrator, poet, caffeine junkie, student of life, and lover of all things related to self and soul development. By harnessing her natural superpowers - her voice and words - Abbey is lighting the way for those on their way to the light!

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