We all love being there for our friends, so this may not bother you initially, but if you can't rely on people you invest your time and emotions in, then who will you reach out to, when you actually need support?
Such friendships can only lead to emotional loneliness, because all healthy relationships are built on mutual support and growth. The third type of friendship that you must watch out for is a two-faced friendship. Such friends enjoy the attention they get from you, but don't really consider you a true friend. They are nice to your face, but are entirely different behind your back. If what people say to others about you, doesn't match how they behave when they are around you, how can you ever truly trust them? And without trust, there can be no healthy friendship.
Another sign of such two-faced friends is that they will always tell you what you want to hear, while secretly hoping for your failure. If a friend can't give your honest feedback or a perspective check, then that should be a red flag as well.
The fourth type of toxic friend is a friend who tries to manipulate you to get their way. These manipulations can be subtle, such as always tricking you into doing things that they want, and making you feel guilty for disagreeing with them. Not only is it deceptive and disrespectful, but such manipulation can also damage your confidence and ability to make your own decisions.
An excellent example of this is my friend Joe, who goes to clubs and parties almost every weekend, not because he enjoys it, but because his roommate, Mike does. I remember one time when we were all hanging out and we asked Joe to pick an activity. He chose to visit the Museum of Modern Arts in San Francisco, but after that he felt guilty for a week, like he owed Mike a favor, for not picking something that Mike have wanted him to.
An easy way to start such manipulative friends is by simply taking them up on the promise they made in the past, and see how they respond. Do they actually deliver on what they say, or do they end up making excuses? Another type of friendship to watch out for are mean friends. I once had a friend in high school, around whom always felt like I was walking on egg shells. He always criticized me but never talked about my strength. He used to tell me that he cared about me a lot, which is why he would say those mean things, and I believed him.
I thought he was helping me grow when in reality, all the criticism was only damaging by self esteem and made me less confident to be my true self. Friendships are supposed to be supportive and should add value to your life, but if they make fun of you or belittle your ideas, that's not something you should overlook. There is no room for mean attitudes in a healthy friendship.
Be unapologetically yourself with your friends, because healthy friendships are directly related to a longer life, and also a happier, more fulfilling one. The trickiest part, however, is that even the most healthy friendships will have some rough patches. Good friends aren't the ones that are always telling you what you want to hear, but are rather the ones who tell you what you need to hear, even if you get mad at them. Such feedback can always be delivered with warmth and care, but it's still very common for people to feel angry and upset when someone disagrees with them.
If that's you, then you need to watch this video next, where they talk about why you feel that defensiveness and how to fix it, because it's something that can hurt your relationships and push away even the healthiest of friendships.