There are two types of friends in our lives....the Eagles and the Turkeys.
The Eagles are the friends who are literally the wind beneath my wings. In so many little ways and big ways they enrich my life, sustain me when I struggle, inspire and heal me. They may not even know how much they have positively influenced me. They are the type of friends who notice...and listen.
The Turkeys however are the toxic friends, the ice upon my wings. They drain me, ignore, belittle, bait me. Their words and actions become toxic sometimes slowly, sometimes obviously, but poisonous nonetheless.
The hard part is identifying between the two....and then distancing myself from the ones who are a negative influence.
Toxic friends can be 'sneaky'. For instance, negative or hurtful remarks can be made either on my actions or opinions by one. Another joins in. But stand up to them and it will apparently be all my fault for deliberately misunderstanding their comments. Try and express an opinion different to theirs....or try and show a different side to a debate, and watch them turn on you.
Toxic people are draining. They like the drama and sympathy they get from their hard luck stories or trials. Everyone has trials, some more than others....but a toxic friend will ALWAYS have the best hard life story and offer little empathetic or constructive to support you. They don't just listen.
Toxic people are a big ball of criticism. No matter what I do, there will always be something wrong. They seize upon the negative in every situation...and use it to say " I told you so" to put you down.
Toxic friends betray my trust, through gossip or their actions.
Toxic friends make me feel stressed or worried or on guard whenever we are together.
Toxic friends make you feel bad about being yourself.
Friendship is not a one way street. I'm sure we've heard the saying " If you want to have a friend, be a friend" It's good advice. If I want a good friend, I become a good friend myself.
I personally think people take on character traits of the friends they hang out with. The more time we spend with a friend, the more likely we both have an impact, and influence on each others lives. I know I'd prefer to be one who has a positive impact, someone who enriches or lights up another person in even a little way than be someone who drags them down into the pit with me.
We all deserve good friends and to live life well. It's up to us all to choose who influences us, who and how we want to spend our time, what our actions will reflect. As everyone's personality and characters are different and grow and change, so do our friendships. And for all it sounds harsh and hard hearted, it is time to sort between the Eagles and the Turkeys.