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Bad Friends – When to End a Friendship

bad friends

Bad friends are all around us. Learn to recognize a bad friend and understand when to end a friendship, especially if it’s doing nothing but messing your life.

All of us have had our share of bad friends through the years.

But have you really learnt your lesson, or do you still find yourself in a bad friendship even now?

One of the first things we have to understand about bad friends is that they suck the life out of you, slowly and surely.

Instead of trying to fix someone up all the time, learn to understand when to end a friendship, especially if it’s a bad one.

Life with bad friends

Even since we were little boys and girls, we’ve been made to believe that friendships last forever, that our friends are always going to be there for us.

We were our happiest when we were with friends.

Besides being our friends, they act as our support group, escort agents and shopping guides.

But friendship also comes with a “conditions apply” clause.

The give-and-take policy works here too, as with everything else in the world. The last time you and your friend went shopping and saw that exclusive Gucci bag, did she just step aside and let you have it or do you still have those tell-tale injury marks to prove your survival?

Even among guys, when you spot a hot coworker down the lane, does your friend walk beside you or does he speed up his pace to be the first to talk to her?

When we were kids, there was always the bully of a friend who wanted the best toys, and ousted other kids from the group if they refused his every beck and call. And now during our adult life too, things aren’t very different.

Understanding a bad friendship

Many of us find ourselves in the middle of a bad friendship. Every one of us has a bad friend in our own group of friends.

Now who exactly is a bad friend, you may ask. For starters, they are the ones who expect to be included in every single outing, the ones who take over the story you have been telling somebody else, and the ones that try to dominate you every second of your life. Initially, every bad friend presents themselves as a kind and caring person. But it’s all just an act, even if your friend doesn’t know it themselves. Bad friends are unintentional masters in the art of deception.

There’s a fine line between being there for a friend and never being away from friends. In the workplace, there is the bad friend who calls themselves your friend but stabs you in the back if the boss happens to appreciate your work over theirs.

At a party, a bad friend always tries to steal the thunder and if you happen to get more of the spotlight, you’re going to pay for it. Calculative and deceiving, your bad excuse of a friend will pretend to be your best friend forever until you deprive her of something that she believes is hers.

Sitcoms too have their own share of bad friends, whose sole ambition is to see their friend crash and burn.

So why are we still friends with a bad friend? The answer is totally up to you. As we all know, the very nature of friendship can be tricky. If you don’t have to pop an aspirin after every visit from your annoying friend, then you’re probably fine for now.

But if you feel like you’ve been hammered on the head every time you spend time with this bad friend of yours, then you really need to look deep into your friendship and give this bad relationship a thorough inspection.

When to end a friendship with a bad friend

#1 When you feel depressed

Do you conclude your visits feeling depressed, frustrated or angry? A good friend is supposed to make you feel happy and content. If your friend drags in an air of negativity, perhaps it’s time to end the friendship. Make up an excuse or get the hell out of their life. [Read: How to be happy in life]

#2 If your energy is being zapped

Some bad friends can make you feel dull and annoyed. It could be because they constantly demand your attention like a two year old or drone on only about their problems or achievements. You can do without these types of bad friends, you aren’t a baby-sitter anyway.

#3 Too much drama in their life

Do you feel drained and tired because of a friend’s constant drama? Any friend who behaves like a diva needs to get their head examined. We have television and other sources to serve us this purpose. We don’t need a friend like that around us.

#4 Your friend makes you feel bad

What use is a friend who offends you all the time? Does your friend put you down or makes you lose your confidence? We have our enemies to do that job for us.

[Read: How to love yourself]

#5 A bad friend who cuts you down with criticism

Honesty is very much appreciated, but when friends pass sarcastic comments and take cheap digs at you, things can’t get any worse. Jealousy and competition is healthy, but not in excess. [Read: How to look sexy without trying]

#6 Your friend wants advice all the time

Your friend keeps droning on about their partner or their love life, or constantly asks for your help to meet new dating potentials. And even if you do offer your advice or help, they don’t take advantage of it. Instead, this friend only wants more help all the time.

#7 Behaves like a dictator

All of us have friends who are bossy in nature. But there should be a thin line between being assertive and just plain mean and bitchy. It may work in a teen movie, but in real life, there’s really no point in pampering a bad friend or becoming a part of their entourage.

#8 Green eye alarm

We are all possessive of our friends but when your pal starts to ask a lot of questions about your other friends, start following you everywhere or doesn’t like it when you meet new friends, it’s high time you end the friendship or make sure your friend is not turning into a green eyed monster. [Read: Do you feel lost in life?]

#9 Gossip queen

If your friend is constantly making jibes at other friends, chances are, this bad friend may be talking bad about you behind your back too. Who needs a friend who will do more harm than good?

#10 Busy bee

Some friends never seem to find time for you. They always come up with lame excuses whenever you need them. But they expect you to always be there for them. And if you can’t give them your time, they make it a point to constantly remind you about how bad a friend you are.

The world is full of friends, and then some bad friends. Be wary of those friends that drag you down and understand when to end a friendship and when to keep one. It can make life a lot happier for you.

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16 thoughts on “Bad Friends – When to End a Friendship”

  1. Brittany says:

    That awkward moment when you read a list and realize “Wow. All these apply to my ex and me”. Energy drainer? Yep. Makes me feel depressed? Yep. Too much drama in their life? Yep. Makes me feel bad? Yep. Behaves like a dictator? Yep.

    Idk why we’re trying the friends thing. Looking at this list, we’re bound to crash and burn. Seeing that I don’t really like being around him anymore and yet I can’t let him go either. He chases me and I accept him back every time. I don’t know why. I guess I let my loneliness get the best of me.

  2. Nancy says:

    Yes this was a very helpful article, and depressing as well. I was feeling bad about getting rid of some so called friends until I read this. My reasons for dumping them were valid but now I’m depressed that I’ve obviously been choosing people who are bad for me and now that they are gone, I don’t have any friends. I have acquaintances but that’s it.

  3. EmiliaHill says:

    I’m in what I think is a bad friendship right now, problem is that he is so mean when we are around other people, sex is always over when he’s done, he missed my birthday (which I was all alone for because I have no family) and said he would “repay” me somehow but he just doesn’t go through with anything he says. He is also my only friend so I’m finding it very hard to decide if I should just suck it up or leave him

  4. Benjamin W. says:

    There should be another type of bad friend on this list- and I am totally guilty of this and some other people may be able to relate too.

    #11 the tolerant one

    You may be a nice person and good friend in general, but usually lonely and overlooked, maybe just new in town or looking to meet new people.

    You end up making friends to not be lonely. This may include lowering standards and things you look out for that let’s you know someone is your friend.

    You collect a bad friend or two, and try to put up with their bullshit as long as it isn’t as bad as being alone. The bad friend ends up thinking nothing is wrong with them and is unaware that their bullshit upsets or drains you.

    One day the bad friend goes too far and you realize that you’re not interested in being friends with them. You probably never were, who knows?

    In this situation, they aren’t your friend. You’re their friend.

    I’m sure there’s still hope for the tolerant ones:

    The hardest thing is ‘un-friending’ bad friends, because you’re most likely a really nice person and the ‘bad friend’ may have become really attached to your friendship and always want to be around/sit by you.

    Before calling someone your friend, think about what they’ve done for you, what they may want from you, and the opposite. I know it sounds a bit shallow, but friendships should be mutual, not parasitic.

    Come up with a universal question that you can ask yourself to see if you really see someone as your friend. Something like:

    “would I let this person sleep over at my house?”

    “if we were stuck in an empty room for 5 hours, would this person drive me crazy? ”

    Come up with your own hypothetical situation or question and mentally review your current ‘friends’, both good and bad. Figure out the traits of both. (Many of the bad friends may fit on the list above.)

    Figure out how to get closer to the ones you genuinely like and distance yourself from the ones you don’t. Don’t try to change others. If you don’t like them now, you probably won’t later.

  5. lindagail says:

    Yes this helped. It’s a slippery slope at times. There is this thing called life. Today I see it’s better not to cut friends off but to understand the benefit I get from knowing them.

  6. Jamila says:

    All those traits are present in my bad friend whom i’m currently enduring with all her drama. I unfortunately cant tell her directly how i’m feeling about our friendship because she’s agressive and just so ignorant. She cant change for sure.I gave a second chance hoping probably its not going to be like the previous friendship but it seems like it is again and we are probably gonna stop talking to each other for the same reason.
    me opening up on how i feel

  7. Friday says:

    Wow, this actually opened my mind. Im glad i stumbled across this because im starting to question friendship and honestly, who needs negative people like that in their life
    Especially when as human beings we go through enough

  8. hannah says:

    There also that friend that won’t respect your personal boundaries, guilts and manipulates you,
    And calls you a liar

  9. Rebecca says:

    I had a best friend who was so bully to me and wanted to make final decisions for me and gets upset with me if I dont take her decision and at times accusing me of things that she assumes and that made me feel so bad .At times she will be sulky to me and start talking things that will hurt me about my boyfriend.I used to share my prblems with her as a friend and I learn from the best .We lost touch for almost 3 years since my boyfriend passed away and now she want us to be best friends again and she is now nice to me and want to keep in touch with me and hang around where we use to .I dont think thats a god idea to be friends again

  10. Charles says:

    I can usually tell when it’s time to weed out friends based on birthdays. These are the friends that are grown adults yet act like a child that’s about to turn 7 and start making gift demands. Yet, on my own birthday I’d be lucky to get a text and later claiming to have ‘forgot’. Thing is I don’t need gifts and money spent on me, but a hey happy birthday goes a long way.

    I decided to cut the cord when on my birthday I receive a text. Not a happy birthday, but to tell me about her guy problems and telling me what she wanted for her own birthday. Good riddance.

  11. LaTrice says:

    I had to end my twenty two years of friendship with my ex-best friend, because he doesn’t respect me-not only as a friend, but as a human being. I was his emotional punching bag when things didn’t go right with his life. Whatever decision that he was making, he had my SUPPORT! I was more of a best friend to him, than he was a best friend to me. His girlfriend was extremely insecure and jealous of our friendship-even though there was NOTHING going on between the two of us. When my ex-best friend sent me text messages, by calling me every name in the book, it was the last STRAW!

    He asked if we can work on our friendship, and I rejected the idea. I have a ZERO tolerance level for disrespect, and honestly, it seems that he doesn’t know the true meaning of friendship. I feel that both him and his stupid girlfriend need to grow up, stop airing their dirty laundry on Facebook for the whole entire globe to know, and take care of their children.

    I will NEVER forgive my ex-best friend for what he did to me, because his behavior is atrocious, appalling and DISGUSTING! I will take one day at a time, and I know that I can make it without him.

  12. Anne says:

    The negativity and drama one really hurt. Could it be that your friend is going through something? I had a friend recent scream at me over the phone telling me I have serious issues, then later told me how negative I am. Turns out she is not an empathetic person at all, she worships positivity but forgets the person. She forgot that I had lost my mom suddenly and unexpectedly just months before. Instead of walking along side me and lifting me up, she accused me of being negative. Never once following my return home from my mom’s funeral did she ask how I was doing. That all hurt. Deeply.

  13. Bryanna says:

    I am really stressing out now. I seem to be like a lot of points you just described! But I really dont backstab or gossip about my good friends. It is just that friendship has always been one of my top priorities and that I expected too much. So when a friend didnt act like I though they would (like waiting for me like I waited for them so we could walk together to class, or offering them food when they forgot their lunch, or when they had their hard times, I always talked about it with them so they would feel better) So when they really didnt “give” me anything back like the “give and get” thing I got upset and that later became anger (and it sounds like the dictator point). I also seemto be wanting their attention all the time and I also dont like it when they make new friends, but I have been working on that! Its just that Im afraid that I will upset my friends if I dont give them that attention, but I guess that was only because I didnt want them to be going through what I had gone through… even though they were the one that made me go through the time when I felt like nobody cared about me. Also one of my friends is a totally know-it-all while I have way better grades than her, so that adds why I have been dictator-ish. What should I do? Also when hard times came, I was ready to punch someone if they were going to punch my friend(this is about a other friend), and also I was gonna stick by my friends side in case there would be a fight with words. But when the time came, my friend didnt help me! But she is also very very socially-awkward. Ugh its just that I have beeeeen veryyyyy supportive and never really got anything in return, which made me like this now.

  14. Lucy says:

    I’ve been best friends with someone for a long while who has turned into a terrible gossip. I mean, I can’t meet up with her for drinks without hearing a laundry list of people and what they’re up to behind closed doors. I do like hearing saucy things from time to time, but it’s definitely making me think twice about whether or not I want her friendship in my life. I have to keep my mouth shut around her, that’s for her lol.

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