There is nothing worse than your support network being fudged together with some seriously old Blu Tac, you want the really tough adhesive that bonds you together for life. I’ve been upsetting myself lately at the lack of strength there seems to be in some of those bonds within my own support network, I get the feeling a few of those ties are being stretched to their limits with life seemingly breaking a few of those bonds along the way and I’m not sure how I feel about it. I’d like to think I’m grown up enough to sensibly analyse the structure of my friendship group by taking note of what could be the issue before throwing all my toys out the pram like a childish school girl, but I have some deep rooted scars from a couple of past tense toxic friendships that still haunt me to this day, clouding over my judgement making me believe that I should cut all ties and be done with it, move onto new circles of potential ‘besties’. The agony aunt inside me calmly tells me that this is not the way to go about things, that I’m being irrational and past experiences of unkind friendships should never influence the way I perceive others.
This is a lot easier said than done when you’ve had to make some incredibly hard decisions to cut ties with friendships that have become toxic within your lifestyle. People who you called a sister because you were so close, so close you thought nothing would ever get between you and your ever lasting bond, but life changes and evolves opening up new paths to follow and unfortunately some people don’t travel in the same direction as you. Those people will try to hold you back, they will give you bad advice, pick on your insecurities and openly doubt your abilities to delve into new opportunities. They will know you so well they will be able to manipulate any situation to make you feel like your not good enough. They will plant seeds of mistrust in your mind around other friendships and they will turn into the green eyed monster if you see too much of anyone else but them. These people are toxic and they need to be held at arms length, with these types of people in your life you will always feel unworthy and never fully up-to-scratch.
I’ve managed to filter out some negative vibe-ers from my social circle over the years, it’s left me sad for the losses and I still think about them from time to time, but it was necessary in the path I was heading down. I remind myself that if I hadn’t made those hard decisions I very much doubt I would be where I am today, with a beautiful boy, my loving partner and the confidence to start writing about my experiences for all of you to hear. I’m a firm believer that everything happens for a reason. Whatever the weaknesses I may feel in my current friendships are minor, nothing that can’t be sorted over a coffee date or a boozy pub evening, but only because we are open and honest with each other. A good friend will notice change and be quick to address the matter before it becomes un-salvageable, they will get angry at you for all the right reasons and then tell you that they love you, they will stay true to themselves and let you know where you stand and how they are feeling and most importantly, they will support you. The girls I have do just that, whatever feelings of heartbreak I have towards our weakened bond is just down to the failure in communication between us all, but the one thing I’ve found is if your feeling the struggle then it’s likely the other person is too. Friendships aren’t easy, you have to work at them some need more work than others a bit like a relationship, no one friendship being the same, you learn from each one taking away bits to make you a better friend to the next.
If a friendship makes you feel like you’ve done 10 rounds in a ring with Mike Tyson it maybe time to re-evaluate what’s important in your life, is keeping someone who sucks the positivity out of your soul the right thing? Or is having enough self love to be strong by keeping the fakery and toxicity at arms length or even cutting the ties completely the right answer? It’s never easy and it’s a decision not to be taken lightly if ridding them from your life is the conclusion you’ve come to but whatever you do make sure you talk openly about your feelings first, only then will you know what path to take and remember to always be kind and always be understanding, with that in mind you will be able to see things clearly because sometimes all it takes is a little chat to rid the air of toxicity.