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Frenemies: How to Know if a Friend You Trust is In Fact a Frenemy


Frenemies are people who pretend they are your friends to gain something. They treat you as an enemy. Beware, they will break your heart.

If we all want to be honest, we have all had a frenemy at some point. Frenemies are supposed to be a friend, but they are a covert enemy. Typically, not liking you any more than you do them, you keep the peace because it is easier than being honest about how you feel.

Beware, the repercussions of not being friends with someone not worth pretending to be friends.

10 signs to beware of frenemies hidden in friend’s clothing

The problem with frenemies is that if you get sucked in and forget your place, you end up getting really hurt. The lines between friends and enemies is one that blurs pretty frequently. If you don’t notice, you wake up with your heart broken, your secrets stolen, and feeling robbed.

If you have a frenemy, don’t allow yourself to be attached or ever forget what the real relationship is.

#1 They are way too self-disclosed up front. Someone who tells you everything about them instantly is probably doing so to capture you and get a leg up. They do it to gain control over you and to get you, in turn, to give them your secretive information.

Once they know all your secrets, they’ve got you. They own you. Be careful of a friend wearing sheep’s clothing by telling you things way too early or that you know you shouldn’t be hearing. If it feels too deep and personal, it is. [Read: How to tell if someone is jealous of you]

#2 They want all of your attention. A frenemy wants all of your time and all of your attention because they don’t want any competition from other people in your life. Isolation and making sure you have no one to turn to is your frenemy’s best friend.

If they get you to blow off your other friends and focus solely on them, then who are you going to turn to when they start to push you around? [Read: Superficial person alert: 36 shallow traits they just can’t hide]

#3 Frenemies love to play devil’s advocate. If you have a friend who can’t seem to ever agree with you or be on your side, but rather takes the “devil’s advocate” side, they intentionally try to sabotage your feelings and any initiative that you would have to succeed.

Like popping your balloon, they never show you praise. Instead, they present to you all the reasons why things never work to keep you reliant and subordinate to them.

#4 They almost always have an ulterior motive. Frenemies aren’t really your friend. They seek to gain something from you. You are a means to some end. If you feel taken advantage of, guess what, that feeling is probably real. Listen to that internal feeling telling you something isn’t right. It is almost always right.

#5 They love drama. A frenemy likes to create conflict and drama by always digging up dirt or starting shit. They always have to be mad at someone to unite you to them. Always asking for allegiance, they create fake scenarios to pit you against other people just because.

#6 They love to know all the ugly. A frenemy loves to get the dirt on everyone to use later for their purposes. Almost like taking stock of everyone’s faults, failures, and what they can ultimately use to embarrass them or make them miserable. When with a frenemy, they constantly pump you for gossip and information on everyone else’s shit. [Read: Why some people go searching for drama]

#7 They use humor to cut you down. A frenemy disguises their hostility toward you as a “joke.” Often making you the butt of their entertainment, everyone else thinks they are just being funny, but deep down you know that there is nothing funny about what they say or do.

#8 They make you question what you say and do. A frenemy works best by keeping you on your guard. Since they pretend to be your friend while at the same time showing the hostility of being unfriendly, it leaves you asking if it is you or what you have done.

When someone who is being nice, yet has an undertone of an “I don’t like you,” it leaves you constantly questioning what you did or what type of person you are. That isn’t much fun, and that certainly isn’t friendship behavior.

#9 They hate to be challenged. At the heart of any frenemy is someone insecure and probably jealous. Easier to have you around than to be at odds, they don’t like it when you question their superiority over you or really challenge them at all.

Frenemies just expect you to go along with whatever they say. Because, well, most people do. If you do call them out, they completely overreact and make sure you feel so stupid and insecure that you might think twice about doing it ever again. [Read: 10 types of toxic friends you need to ditch immediately]

#10 They couldn’t care less. A frenemy’s signature move is they couldn’t care less about you. They aren’t ever going to be your emergency contact. In fact, if something is serious in your world and you really need them, they are either going to be out to lunch or staring at their phone while you pour your heart out.

The only person that frenemies care about are themselves. Insensitive is an understatement when it comes to someone who is your frenemy, so try not to make the mistake of thinking that they care. They just don’t.

If you have a friend who you feel doesn’t really give a shit about you, uses you as a scapegoat, and makes you the bud of their comedic routine every time you are out, then they aren’t your friend. They keep you close because they envy you and know that it is better for them to pretend to be your friend than to make you their enemy.

[Read: 15 signs you have shitty friends and need to get some new ones]

Just be careful of a friend in frenemy clothes, frenemies are a road to heartache.

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Julie Keating
Julie Keating

A writer isn’t born, but created out of experiences. No lack of subject matter, my life reads more like fiction than anything that could have been imagined...

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