We all have those “friends.” The ones that may or may not show up. The ones that may or may not text back. The ones that may or may not keep their word. And the ones that only come around when it’s convenient – for themselves. They’re really good at making you feel a bit used or like a second option. In reality, they’re really not friends at all. On the other hand, have you ever sat and wondered if you yourself have ever been that friend?
Good, beneficial friendships are hard work just like any other relationship and every once in a while it’s a good idea to take a step back and evaluate ourselves. Some of the key elements that make a person a good friend are some of the hardest to follow through on; keeping secrets, sticking it out during the hard times or being truthful. At first glance, it’s easy to say, “Well yeah, I do all of those things! I’m a great friend!” But if we were to be real with ourselves and our friends, there are probably areas that could be improved upon. And below you’ll find 15 signs that you’re actually a bad friend. If some of these points apply to you, it’s time to step up your game.
15 Social Climbing
Do you really enjoy being around your friends? Or do you hang out with certain ones only to climb the social ladder? If you’re envious of your pals things or popularity, you may not be in the friendship for just that … friendship. Make sure you’re not acting like a friend only to gain a level of status you’ve been chasing after. And make sure you’re with a friend for no other reason than what’s internal rather than what you can gain from hanging out with them on a Saturday – at a party he/she may be able to get you into.
14 Trying To Change
If you’re trying to change your friend – stop now. There’s no reason to be in a relationship – of any kind – if you want to change the other person. Instead, complement each other and lift each other up. That’s what friends are for after all. No one wants a friend who tries to manipulate them into being someone different. In fact, it’s a bit insulting – and who wants someone around like that?
13 Overtly Flirtatious
Have you caught yourself flirting with your best friend’s significant other? Wouldn’t you be upset if you caught your pal making passes at your beau? If you can’t be trusted, then that’s a loud, red and flashing sign that you’re not being the friend you should be. Once a line is crossed you can’t go back, remember that next time you become too touchy-feeling with someone who isn’t yours.
Everyone hates a one-upper, right? Whether it’s a higher test score, spring break plans or, for the mommy friends … stroller brands, the constant competition can get tiresome and hurtful. If you’ve caught yourself doing some bragging and comparing, you just may be the annoying one-upper. Stop trying to be the better of the two and just relate, empathize or congratulate depending on the situation – that’s what real friends do.
11 Talking More Than Listening
Think about the conversations you have with your friends and try to differentiate between how much you’re talking and listening. If you’re constantly the one to cut the other off just to get an extra word in edgewise, you’re in need of a wake-up call. Relationships are all about communication, which is a two-way street. You need to make sure you’re being a good listener all the way around.
10 Too Much Drama
Are you the friend with the constant crises? Or are you drawn to every Facebook fight, Insta argument or Twitter-feud? And then, you get in touch with your buddies to vent or hop on the bandwagon. Drama gets old, so don’t be the friend that has to have unnecessary friction and turmoil. Unless there’s a real problem, swallow it, calm down and just enjoy a night out with the gals without the need to vent about more pettiness.
9 Secret Spiller
If you have a tendency to spill your friends’ secrets, well then, shame on you. There’s a reason it was called a secret in the first place and trust was put into your hands in hopes to vent and not so you could turn around and divulge the juice. Whether it involves personal family matters or health concerns, if you promised or you know he or she wouldn’t want the rest of the gang to know – keep your lips sealed!
Are you constantly allowing your friends to pay your way? Whether it’s dinner or a ticket to a movie, it’s nice when our friends treat us. But that should go both ways. And if you can’t afford to do that, your friends will and should understand as long as you’re honest. But don’t allow your pal, no matter have “well off” they may seem, to constantly foot the bill for your fun. Eventually, they’ll feel used by you and may even start to question the friendship.
Does your stomach turn when your BFF is having a coffee date with someone else? Or do you get really jealous when she starts spending a bunch of time with her new boyfriend? You don’t want to be the possessive, overprotective friend. That “no one is good enough” for your friend mentality isn’t healthy. Don’t get in the way of your friends living their own lives. And if you constantly voice your less-than-important concerns about others, you’ll quickly become the “little boy who cried wolf” which won’t help matters when legitimate concerns arise.
6 Never Taking Responsibility
Or saying sorry. These two go hand-in-hand. If you’re the type to make a mistake but act like it was no big deal or you have no realization that you ever did anything wrong, then this too is a big sign that you’re not doing your part in the friendship. And part of being a friend is being able to say you’re sorry when you slip up or do something hurtful – intentional or not.
5 Inappropriate Comments
Commenting on one of their friends you don’t really know or even mentioning his or her parents in an unflattering way, making unfiltered comments may not be the best way to go about being a friend. Trash talking people that your friends care about, it’s simply not nice and there’s no gray area here. You shouldn’t being doing it. Sometimes it really is a good idea to think before you speak.
4 Holding It Over Their Heads
When a favor is done for a friend that doesn’t mean they owe you anything in return. Whether it was footing the bill for their last mani-pedi because they were short on cash or giving them a lift to work when their car was in the shop, that’s what friends are for. If you’re known to hang little things over your friends' heads just because you feel entitled, that doesn’t make you the friendliest of the bunch.
3 Super Judge-y
It’s one thing to share your opinion with a friend and be truthful with how you feel, it’s another thing to be super judge-y and critical. You’re there to support and help friends through difficult decisions, but judging them for kissing on the first date or having to get a second job because their parents can’t afford to pay their entire way through college, won’t be strengthening your friendship anytime soon.
Are you the friend that acts different depending on who you’re with? Do you tell different stories or lie about different things because you just want everyone to “like” you? No one likes this kind of “chameleon” friend. It’s phony, it’s fake and eventually the truth will come out and all of your pals will feel manipulated and hurt by the façade that’s been played out for far too long.
1 I Told You So
Making your friends feel worse about an already crappy situation won’t be getting you any brownie points. Again, there’s a time and place for advice and you should always be open and truthful with your friends, but when the “sh!t hits the fan,” the last thing he or she will need from you is the dreaded, “I told you so,” from someone who needs you in their corner. Remember you’re there to support and lift up your buds, not to push them even further when they’re down.