Why it’s okay to cut toxic friends out of your life

“But they’re my friend.”

“We’ve known each other for ages!”

“They’ve been there for me in the past.”

...All of these are excuses I have heard in the past, reasons as to why people feel as if they cannot cut contact with a friend who brings a shit ton of toxicity into their life.

It’s difficult. It really is. These are people we trust/ed. People we’ve built bonds with. People we thought would be in our lives for the long run. Accepting that they might be who we thought they are, or that they aren’t right for us, or that they might need to be cut off... it’s hard to deal with.

This post came to me today after I saw somebody in public who I used to be really, really good friends with. We no longer speak after I decided to cut her off due to several insensitive comments she made about me/a difficult situation I was in. This was someone who I had known for 6 years, someone I thought was a proper mate. She proved otherwise, and I decided that was it.

Some people might think that was dramatic, but under the circumstances, I thought it was the right thing to do, and I haven’t looked back. Sometimes when you fall out with people / stop talking to them, you feel sad about the situation, you miss them, etc. However, I knew this was the right decision, to cut her off, because afterwards, and still to this day, I don’t feel anything. I don’t long for her to be in my life again and I am not mad about what happened.

I went with my gut instinct and I was correct in doing so. She was toxic for me. Not saying she was a toxic person in general, but as time went on, her late actions showed me that she didn’t care enough to take my valid feelings into consideration.

I’ve been through similar experiences in my life, with people like this. We are prone to blaming ourselves when a friendship ends - but we need to realise that often, it isn’t our fault. And sometimes, it isn’t theirs either. Sometimes it’s the fault of both sides. Sometimes it’s neither. Sometimes it’s just life. But when it turns toxic, that’s when we need to acknowledge wrongs, and not feel guilty for making those choices we wish we didn’t have to.

Friends are there to support you. Care for you. Love you, no matter what. Unless you know, you did something seriously wrong, then fair enough. But you shouldn’t be blindly accepting toxic behaviour just because they are your friend. Know when enough is enough. Make room in your life for better people and healthier relationships. You’ll thank yourself, you really will.

It’s only when you cut people off that you start to realise their previous patterns of behaviour, and you’ll remember times when you were unhappy in that friendship. And you’ll be glad you ended that chapter when you did.

It can be painful. It’s just like grief. It’s a loss. It’s a process. And that’s okay. It’s okay to know that it’s going to hurt, maybe for a short time. Maybe for a longer one. Toxic people can also be great people too. They might have provided you with support, care and love in the past, which of course will make the whole thing a shit ton more complicated. You might have made great memories with them, shared unforgettable times. But if you’re reading this and thinking, I have a friend like that, a friend who is adding more negativity to your life than good, a friend who isn’t making you feel valued, a friend who invalidates your emotions, a friend who dismisses you... then maybe it’s time to re-evaluate that friendship.

Do what makes you happy. Put yourself first. Make your needs top priority.


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