There’s nothing nicer than having wonderful friends who love and support you. People you can count on to be there for you when you need them. At the same time, there are relationships that suck the life out of you and leave you feeling used and exhausted. A one-sided friendship that causes you to feel insecure and taken advantage of isn’t any fun.
Here are several signs you might have a one-sided friendship:
You only get called when they need something
If you don’t hear from your friend unless he or she needs something, chances are you’re being used. If months pass and you’re getting the silent treatment, only to be followed by a phone call out of the blue, and then it’s only because there’s something needed, you’re being used. We all get busy and sometimes don’t have time to spend catching up with friends. While this isn’t uncommon, only hearing from the person when they need something is a sure sign they’re taking advantage of you.
I have a friend who only calls me when she needs something. It’s taken me a long time to recognize this, but now I see her for who she is. I know when she calls me, it’s less about catching up with me, and more about whatever she needs from me. Sadly, I’m not wrong. Every time. There’s always a motive to her reaching out. While it hurt my feelings at first, I’m glad I realized it. I know where to put her in my life, and that’s the most important thing.
You do all the giving
If you’re the one who constantly works at the friendship, making calls and initiating plans, then it’s just a one way ticket. This can be hard to notice at first, especially if you’re the type of person who truly enjoys doing random acts of kindness for your friends. It can be painful to realize that if you stopped initiating contact, the friendship would end, but you must. Don’t sink your time and energy into someone who doesn’t appreciate you. There are plenty of people out there who would treat you the way you deserve to be treated. Find those people.
We don’t give to receive, but eventually, it’s got to be reciprocated. A true friendship is one where both parties give, no-one keeps score, and it evens out overtime.
You can’t count on them
It’s no fun to have friends you can’t count on. People who say they’re going to meet you somewhere and be there for you, and then don’t show up. I’ve had friends like this, and it hurts. It’s no fun to make plans, show up, and then realize you’re the only ship in the harbor. I once sat in a restaurant waiting for a friend to show up, who never came. My feelings were hurt but especially my pride. The only explanation was, “something came up.” Clearly, this person got a better offer and ditched me. Who needs a friend like that?
The bottom line
Here’s the most important thing: no-one can take advantage of you unless you allow them to take advantage of you. You’re in charge. You get to decide who you spend your time with and where you focus your energy. You get to draw the line, end a friendship, and decide when something isn’t working in your life.
There can’t be a one sided friendship unless you permit it to happen. You can’t be used unless you allow someone to use you.
Focus on the people who appreciate your kindness and who treat you well. Spend your energy on people who truly care about you, not because they want something from you, but because they recognize how amazing you are.
Find meaning each day,