Toxic friendship- stay or leave?(4 Posts)
long time lurker here. No children and living in Germany so English is not my first language so please bear with my writing.
Something has been bothering for a while now and I could use some advice.
My best friend and I have known each other since kindergarten. We became best friends at 16. Though our friendship has always been difficult as in we're completely different. She is very confident and outspoken to the point of being rude. I'm the opposite...quiet, gentle and introverted. After a while the friendship was becoming toxic for me. She has a lot of issues and needs to be the Centre of my world. She hates me having other friends so I only had her. I tried to get away from her a few times but she wouldn't have it and practically stalked me. A few years back I was diagnosed with General Anxiety Disorder, Social Anxiety and Depression. I got therapy and worked really hard on myself. I still do. 6 years ago I got the offer to train for a job in Berlin with mental guidance which is far away from where I live. I decided to go for it and it meant I left said best friend behind. After a few months we lost contact and I got the chance to make new friends. I fully thrived and lived an almost carefree life. I didn't miss my best friend as I made so many new friends who I had much more in common with and for the first time i enjoyed people's company.
Sadly that time ended after I completed training after 3 years. I stayed in Berlin but most of friends moved. Anyway...a year ago my former best friend suddenly got back in contact with me. Feeling more mature I thought she probably grew up like me and that I could handle her now. End of story is she managed to make me move back where I have only her and my parents + brother. I even live in the same house as her. So maybe I can't handle her at all.
The first few weeks were fine. But then the problems started. She's very opinionated and we don't agree on many things. For example she said something like: "you see that slow moving mother with her brood? She looks Turkish...we should all gas them." She is also very manipulative and most of the times gets things done her way and if not she sulks like a child. I also have to defend my actions to her. If I buy something she wouldn't buy herself she makes a snide remark. If i buy makeup she informs me of "all the chemical crap that's in there" and ask "what I have payed for this nonsense". She is a lesbians who dressed like a guy, complete with short hair. I'm a girly girl so we don't have a lot in common there. I'm trying to grow my hair after she convinced me to cut it short and she disapproves of it. She's also a notorious liar and the list goes on and on...
The thing is we get on really well WHEN we agree on something so I do feel guilty when I talk about her like this. But since receiving therapy for my disorders my mental health has become extremely precious to me and I really don't like to risk any breakdowns or be around people that make me feel bad. She does so many things that trigger all my mental issues. And in contrast to when we where teenagers I no longer can ignore what she says or does and it's becoming really stressful and drains me. I have to bite my lip so many times because discussions with her lead nowhere. She listens to no one. Not even doctors.
I really want to have a friendship where I feel comfortable in and can do more things that I'm interested in. Girly things like chatting about make up and men. Going to the movies or the theatre. But first of all I don't know wether to end the friendship with her and secondly she isolated me from everyone else. So I wouldn't know how to find new friends with the same interest. I spent nights awake about this so I really would love to hear your opinion on this.
Should I leave her or should I work on the friendship? Or am I simply overreacting? Also sorry for the long post. I needed to vent and actually edited and shortened it
I can't think that anyone on here would advise you to stay given what you've described. This person sounds awful and controlling, but only you can get yourself out of this. She s not a friend, she's a control freak. Move away now and build a new life with new friends.
Thanks for your answer.
Yeah, I guess it's quite obvious. There's just always so much guilt tripping involved as she has done quite a lot for me. But the bad things outweigh this.
Though I don't know how to leave. She refused to let go and she's known to confront people who ignore her. She once stood in front of a friends house for almost two hours waiting for her to come out after that friend tried to end the friendship. Talking to her seems fruitless. We also live in the same house like I said and that makes avoiding her difficult.
I feel like I'm in school again. It's ridiculous and I thought as an adult you could handle things more maturely
You need to leave and get far, far away. Then block all contact with her. No idea how it works in Germany, but if you can make sure you get your post redirected (to catch anything you've forgotten to give your new address to) so that she has no excuse to get in touch. I'd also plan to move when she's away for a few days, and leave enough money to cover the rent for the next couple of months if you can so you're not in the wrong by leaving her in the lurch.
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