Toxic friendships are real-life dementors
Do you remember the third Harry Potter book/movie when dementors were introduced? Do you remember a dementor-kiss?
For non-HP fans, a dementor was a magical creature- evil to be precise who sucked a person’s soul. They were the foulest creatures of the wizarding world.
Now, a dementor may not exist in the real world, but they’re people who are real-world dementors. They suck out your soul by constantly being bad friends, being toxic- acting as bad influences over your mental health. These real-life Dementors weren’t magical, floating creatures- but people that resembled you and me.
Have you ever been friends with someone that constantly puts you down or makes fun of things you are clearly insecure of despite them knowing the story? Then, I am sorry to tell you, but you’re a part of a toxic friendship.
While these two aren’t the only signs of a toxic friendship, they are one of the substantial red flags to deem the relationship as toxic.
Friendship breakups suck. They are annoyingly hurtful and stay with you forever. While I can’t call myself an expert in the entire ‘friendship breakups’ situation, but I’m experienced enough to know that they hurt- sometimes more than romantic-relationship breakups.
An acquaintance once told me- how I change friend dynamics every year. It felt weird, hurtful (of course) because how is it my fault that every friend group I become a part of- ends up mentally exhausting me to a point staying in my room, refusing to leave the house?
Have you ever walked on eggshells? Have you ever not known the place you stand in a friendship/ group dynamic? I’m afraid- these two are other signs of a toxic friendship- red flags, if I may.
I was the kind of person who would stay in a toxic friendship for the momentary happiness- momentary escape or validation it gave me. I would walk on eggshells, do things they liked, say things they wanted to hear and let my mental health go to the drain so they could be friends with me.
This momentary validation, even though it sounds a little too tempting, a little too comforting, a little too familiar- is probably worse than being oblivious to the fact that you are in a toxic friendship.
This momentary comfort is something that burned a hole in my heart, something that left me with no one to turn to, something that led people not to respect me.
But lately, in fact- not too long ago, I have realised how friendships- despite the length of it, despite the intensity of it can and should be broken if either party gets toxic.
Friendships take more of a person’s life than relationships, and to have these precious, innocent friendships- that takes a little too much from your life to have ended up in a bad rut just because either of them doesn’t accept the toxicity is unfair.
Why would you want to knowingly mess with your mental health just for the sake of friendships that already have set expiry dates?
Because yes, I do change friend dynamics every year; yes, I have had quite a few momentary best friends; and- yes, things ended up at a point beyond redemption. The reason for it was because- I stayed in those friendships long enough for me to realise how messed up other people’s minds were and how ugly their hearts could be.
But that’s just the way the world works. You learn, you grow, sometimes lose but, every time, gain something when toxic friend dynamics lose the pact.
Because, at the end of the day, you want to be with people who make you feel safe -if not home- and not with someone that constantly talks about things you are clearly insecure about while continuously downplaying your life experiences.