Everyone needs friends in their life. They can be your support network, the people you confide in, and the ones you rely on when you need a helping hand. However, there may come a time when you question a friendship and wonder if you are giving more than you are getting. Read on to learn some of the alarm bells that show your friend may be using you, and what you can do about it.
You Only Hear From Them When They Need Something
No-one begrudges helping a friend out of a tight spot. In saying that, if you only ever hear from someone when they need to borrow money, then that’s a sure sign your friend may be using you. The next time they ask for financial support, why not offer an alternative such as cash loans from a reputable supplier? The frequency of their contact after that will reveal whether the friendship was worth keeping in the first place.
They Don’t Speak Kindly Of You To Others
Friendship is based on honesty, integrity, and respect. You enjoy each other’s company, appreciate each other’s quirks, and have an unwavering respect for one another. Still, it has to go both ways.
If your friend is talking poorly about you behind your back, then the friendship is clearly one-sided. Even though most social interactions only consist of around 15% negative gossip, the last thing you want is to be the focus of that gossip. It’s up to you to decide whether you confront that friend or distance yourself from them altogether.
They Can Be Manipulative
In a healthy friendship, there are boundaries. You would never ask your friend to do something they didn’t want to do, and you wouldn’t make them feel bad for not doing something. However, if your friend is using you, then that’s exactly what they might do.
A manipulative friend may say things like I thought you were my friend when you say no. They may even guilt-trip you into going against your gut. A friend who only keeps you around for what you can offer is not one that’s worth hanging onto. Consider the viability of that friendship going forward.
You Only Hang Out On Specific Occasions
A good friend is one you can meet up with anywhere, at any time. It doesn’t matter what you’re doing – so long as you’re together, you both have fun. Now, think about the friend that you only see on specific occasions. They might only call on you to help with something you are good at, or in social situations that can boost their image.
If you’re convinced this is happening, invite your friend to hang out in a different situation. Their response will reveal them (and their intentions) in an entirely new light.
They Aren’t There When You Need Them
At least one in four people will struggle with mental health issues at some point in their life. Will your friend be there when you need them the most? Think about the times you have called upon your friend for support. Were they there, or did they ignore you?
A good friend will be there through your highs and lows, but you will only see a friend who is using you at your highs.
It can be devastating to learn that a friend is using you, but it can also be a turning point. Once you find out that you’re not as high of a priority as you thought, you can make changes. Review your friendships and surround yourself with people who genuinely care.