March 11, 2013

Don't you know that you're toxic?

Have you ever had a toxic friendship?

You were best friends with them for years until you realized all they would bring to your life is negativity and drama. And ending the friendship would be better?

I have.

I was friends with this girl we'll call Amanda*. We met on the first day of high school. We were friends all through high school. Best friends, you could say. We did everything together. In fact, we received the Best Friends senior superlative. People knew us as best friends.

Starting probably Spring semester of Junior year or Fall semester of Senior year, everything she did brought drama right along with it.

Maybe it was due to her rough childhood and messed up family. But still. You don't have to follow that trend. Change it.

You see, not many people liked Amanda*. But she would still insert herself in situations with these people and "hang out" with them like they were besties. Often ditching me, her true friend, in the process.

My mom and I even went so far as to invite her on our visit day to Luther because her mom refused to take her on any college tours.

Sometime during junior/senior year, she got a job at a department store. Good for her. One day, she came to school and said she quit her job. Okay? Maybe it was just too much. Another day, not too long after, she came to school and said she got a speeding ticket and had to appear in court. 

I would believe this. She was a little bit of a crazy driver; I would know - I rode with her a lot. 

Well, about a week or so later, I was reading the paper. I happened to look at the list of people under felonies, misdemeanors, etc...people who got in trouble with the law.

There her name was, Amanda Wilson*. According to the paper, she stole some money from this department store while she was working.

Now, I'm not sure how much, when, why. And she didn't go to jail or anything if that's what you're thinking. 

As a best friend, I would think she would tell me. No. She had to lie right to my face. And keep up with the lie, even after our group of friends already knew the truth.

I stayed friends with her. Prom comes and she does the whole ditch our group and hang out with people who ignore her, make fun of her, and don't want her there.

My graduation party comes. She told me she would come. Other parties were going on that day, so I knew people would only stay for a little bit. My other BFF's (the sisterhood) came and stayed for about a half hour before going to other people's parties. Amanda* shows up, before the party even starts, stays for 3 minutes tops and says she has to go so she can attend other people's parties. 3 minutes. After 4 years of friendship, it's come down to lies and 3 minutes.

By this point, I was over her drama.

I spent the summer hanging out with the sisterhood and my family before heading off to college. I saw her maybe once that summer. She was too busy trying to be a part of a group that so obviously didn't want her.

I knew, once fall came, I couldn't put up with her anymore. It was time to end the friendship. She would write on my Facebook wall, message me on Facebook. I never replied to any of the messages. I just ignored her. Cold turkey.

Some people say this may be harsh. But there was no other way to do it. I knew if I talked to her even once, at this point in time, I would feel guilty and continue the friendship. I'm just that girl. But I couldn't continue this friendship. So cold turkey it was.

Amanda* would occasionally message me asking what she did. I still didn't reply. Stay strong.

After about a year of not speaking, she stopped messaging me.

I have not spoken to her since June 2007. 

My life is better for it. My sanity is better for it.

I sometimes hear little tidbits of her life. And most of them are lies. She ran into my brother one day two years ago at the local community college. She said she was going to school for nursing. Really? She was not the nurse type. She was never interested in nursing. And, I'm sorry to say it, but her grades were not nursing-worthy. It takes a really good student to get into nursing school. Especially at our community college. Think 4.0 or you don't make it. She was more a C student.

Her Facebook page said she was in nursing at the University of Minnesota. I know people who attend the UofM nursing program. She was never in nursing.

Ironically, this was around the time when I started in nursing.

I always think I'm going to be asked by old high school classmates at get-togethers or reunions about what Amanda* is up to. And I'm going to say we're no longer friends. I haven't spoken to her since graduation.

They may be shocked, but toxic friendships aren't worth the effort.

Last note: The identity of Amanda* in these pictures have been blocked out, but I can just tell looking at myself in most of these pictures, I don't look like my happy self. A self that was present in every picture after I ditched this friendship.

3/12/2013 Update: I just received a Facebook message from Amanda this afternoon. I think I cursed myself with this post. It basically said congratulations on my nursing degree and that I look good and blah blah. I pressed delete.

 *Amanda Wilson is not this girl's name. It has been changed for privacy reasons.


  1. Can totally relate to a toxic friendship. I had a friend since middle school and remained friends with her through college. Unfortunately, her attitude and personality was too negative and I had to cut her out of my life. We still have the same group of friends so I still see her but we will never be close because of how she treated me.

  2. I've never had a friendship this toxic, but I've definitely had friends who created drama wherever they went. It's also hurtful to me when it feels like a particular friendship means more to you than the other person. That happens to me a lot. I try to keep in touch with my friends and I felt like it was one sided. I've kind of gotten to the point where I gave up. It's sad to me because growing up in a small town, I've had the same friends my whole life. But now, we've grown up and grown apart.

  3. Yes, yes, YES! I had an extremely toxic relationship while I was working and living in DC and moving allowed me to finally get away from her. She would say and do horrible things and basically tried to ruin my engagement party. Oh, and she DID ruin my bachelorette party. I'm much happier without her in my life.

  4. I've had a couple like this! & it takes so much out of a person to be friends with a person like that!

  5. I'm sort of going through this right now. I have a group of girls that I've been friends with since first grade (my own "sisterhood") and one of them has really been bothering all of us lately. She acts WAY different than she used to and barely even acknowledges me anymore. Her ego is huge and she only cares about her boyfriend. I'm guessing I won't be talking to her after graduation. Thanks for sharing this!

  6. I can very much relate to having a toxic relationship, two actually immediately come to mind, both very different friendships but equally toxic. One I ended a year ago and one just this year, even though it was about 10 years in the making. I tried to talk out the second one, but I quickly realized it wasn't worth my time and energy, my voice was never going to be heard and things were only getting worse - so I cut off all communication. She didn't make an ounce of effort to ask why or what was going on - so I knew I made the right decision ending it. It really hurt and I felt a lot of guilt, just like you, but I'm finally past it. No ones holding me back from being myself, no ones judging me. I'm glad you shared this story because while our situations were very different, the feelings sound like they were very much the same.

  7. I totally understand what you mean by "toxic" friendship. I can relate to this story very well, as I had a similar situation, but it took me MUCH longer to finally drop her.

  8. That is CRAZY that she messaged you as soon as the post was up. Timing? or she saw it....
    Either way, I think it's great that you severed that tie and moved on. It's really hard, for sure, but it's so much better for your mental health!!

  9. Wow, I just want to say that this post really hit me hard, I never really thought of some of my friends being toxic and now when I think back on some things it might have been better if I were never friends with some of those people. And you know what I still have someone close to me that brings so much negativity in my life and I dont know how to cut them out because we have been friends for so long and we have so many friends in common that I am afraid of what they will say. So good for you that you moved on. I am still trying to.


  10. Hmm, maybe she has been following your blog since you started telling people about it/ made that Facebook page? That would make a lot of sense. But either way it's obvious she still cares about you, which goes to show what a good person you must be : ] I was going to say that maybe you should take the time to tell her why the friendship "went away." I mean, if it were me, I would feel owed an explanation you know? But I can understand your wanting to have that clean break. And if she has been reading your blog, at least she knows the truth now right?

    I can't say that there's ever been a toxic friendship that I've had and "killed" so to speak haha. I do have a really good friend who has way more drama in her life than I can stand sometimes, but I still enjoy our friendship. And there have been people who maybe were not the best for me to be around, and when I realized that, I would let us fall out of touch, but so would they. There's never been a time where I had a best friend I just didn't want to be friends with anymore--thank goodness. I think it's great that you recognized this and had the strength to stay away. Power to you! : ]

  11. My motto is "cut the fat" I know it might seem insensitive, but there's only so much of yourself you can give to any relationship, and I believe sometimes it's better for BOTH parties to part ways. Good for you for stickin to your guns and taking care of you. XOXOXO

    Kristine from The Foley Fam {unedited} Blog

  12. i've had a toxic friendship too. feel much better when you get rid of that.

  13. I've had a few toxic friendships in my life. Sometimes, its best to let them go. I recently let go of some friendships that were bringing me down. It was hard because although we knew each other for a short time, we became very close.
    I know it's hard since you know they are having a difficult time, but in time you will heal....and hopefully so will she.
    You need to be there for yourself :)

    Andie's Traveling Pants