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Ask Sophia: "I have too many toxic friends"

Updated: Feb 19, 2021

Q: I have too many toxic friends and I don’t know how to get rid of them. I try to not talk to them but I always end up coming back usually because of something they say. I’m scared that if I leave them for good, I won’t have any friends.

A: This post is for all the girls who find themselves entangled in a toxic friendship… I’m talking insulting comments, exclusion, constant ridicule, and a lack of trust. Let’s talk about the big picture here. People in your life will come and go. My aunt constantly reminds me that feeling out of place and having trouble finding your ‘people’ is one step in a long journey until you eventually come across that extremely meaningful friendship. Just because it might take you some digging before you come across the people that make you feel most comfortable and complete doesn’t mean you should settle for toxic friends that make your life miserable.

So maybe your friends aren’t awful to you but they do constantly leave you out and the friendship doesn’t feel 100% healthy. I think you have options. Someone reminded me a few days ago that you can’t keep waiting for the other people to finally invite you. Take the leap of faith and plan a fun picnic or movie night. Step up and make a group chat… the night goes well and now they keep inviting you in the plans they make…. The night goes poorly or they keep declining your offer to hang out and you have your answer.

If the people leaving you out are girls you’ve known for a while or maybe even a ex best friend, the heart breaking but real answer is that they’re moving on. If you tell them that you wish they included you more… then they feel obligated to invite you and it’s awkward on both ends. I talk about this in ‘my friends have changed post’ but sometimes it’s better when you can let someone grow apart from you and make the life choices they want to at this time. Think about it this way: Let’s say you wanted to drop someone you just don’t click with anymore. I’d tell you to gently start to distance yourself. Don’t ask for plans as much and start reaching out to new people. The girls you stopped seeing as much would view you as an unloyal, two faced backstabber. In the end, just know that if you’re really not being included as much you should be, it’s honestly not worth it to beg for someone’s friendship… your better than that.

Yes, it’s ok to be scared that maybe you’ll end up friendless or bad mouthed by these girls. Remember that if these girls were blatantly passive aggressive, rude, (or whatever toxic trait they possessed) to your face… they did it behind your back even more. (Also read this post on gossiping). When people are making you feel bad about yourself, it’s time to question if these people should really be your friends and if it’s worth keeping them in your life.

Saying goodbye to someone you’ve been stuck with for years whether that be a family friend you feel tied to or an entire ruthless friend group… sometimes you gotta put yourself first girl and break away. There’s no point in shying away from the possibility of meeting much better people because you're afraid of a short period where you might feel like a wanderer. Everyone can relate to the feeling of being alone and you most likely already feel alone in this toxic friendship. You don’t want to be left in the dust with nowhere to go but my big tip for you is make friends out of school!!!! I’ll say it again… become friends with the girls from the other public school, the private school, your soccer team, art class, neighborhood, summer camp, or volunteer cohort. They don’t know the school drama, you aren’t fighting over the same boys, they don’t care about your grades, and are genuinely a nice breath of fresh air. When you’re at school, sit with the boys or someone who’s fun but maybe quiet. That’s my plan when it comes to friends and it’s working out pretty well.

Like I say in virtually every post - You have to stand up for yourself and own who you are. When you let yourself get walked all over, this is permission to whoever you’re friends with to continue treating you like trash. An independent girl is able to break away and sculpt her own path, even if it’s terrifying at first.

You got this!


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