I’m one of those people who are really bad at choosing friends…I can count on one hand the number of genuine friendships I’ve had in my life. The rest have come and gone, and a lot have hurt the hell out of me.
Every broken friendship hurts almost as much as a broken relationship - you put so much into the friendship and then when it’s over, well a little bit of your heart has gone too.
Since joining circle and discovering the beauty of women for women, when women are there purely to listen and support - I have also begun to understand how I have spent most of my teenage and adult years being a slave to toxic friendships.
Don’t get me wrong, I’m not a perfect friend! I often cancel, I forget we are catching up, but if you call and need me to come over, if you need me to babysit your kids, if your family member has just died or tragedy has occurred - I’m there in a heartbeat. But I can’t always promise I’ll be there at 10am for coffee - so if you choose to be friends with me, you choose the absent mindedness of Skye!
What I struggle with is the friendships that take a lot, give a little and are in charge of the terms. The terms of friendship are all theirs, the time is theirs and you always feel you owe them something - that their friendship is a gift and you should feel grateful.
My family and one or two close friends are amazing at watching me meet someone, become BEST FRIENDS and basically live in their pocket and then get my heart ripped out when I do something that the friend deems unworthy and immediately dumps me.
Sometimes I don’t even know what I’ve done, but usually it’s nothing and I’ve just outstayed my welcome at the friendship house and it’s time to move on.
This has become exhausting, and because I wear my heart on my sleeve, I tend to lose my heart to these friends, and then get it trampled on. Toxic friends are amazing at using and abusing friendship, and yet it seems they are the most amazing friends with their advice and their reminders of how wonderful they are, and I should definitely feel privileged to be their friend.
Toxic friendships also mean that the person caught in the cycle stops talking to other friends and family - this person is their only true friend, and they don’t need anyone else. I do this every time, I stop talking to my mum and sister (because they are not as amazing as the friend) and focus on this one friend.
Usually they last between 6 months and a year, sometimes a bit longer but never more than 18 months. The toxic friend stops the friendship when they don’t need you, or they have found someone else who can fulfill whatever they currently require.
What I’ve discovered from my time with Wyld Tribe is that it gets easier to realise who the true friends are, I know that I finally saw the truth in one friendship and after chatting with Trace about this friend, it was after a night of circle I finally realised - this person is a friend on their terms only. And so in my mind, I’ve ended the friendship - I didn’t sit them down and break up, but I know I won’t make the effort, I won’t go running when they call me - I am in charge and it feels amazing.
So thank you Sistahood Circles, I am starting to see what it means when I am supported by my tribe, and what real friendship is. I am hoping as I get older and more aware of the type of women I want to surround myself with, that toxic friendships will no longer be a part of my life. In the meantime, I hope I see the warning signs earlier and know to stay away or not become too vested in the friendship!
Listen to our next Magick Monday podcast, when Trace and Skye discuss toxic friendships in more detail, how to find your tribe and when you know you’ve come home.