Have you ever had a friendship that was toxic?  It happened to me a number of years ago and I still think about it.  I’m proud that I had the courage to end it, but I miss the friendship.  I didn’t really realize it at the time, but in retrospect I can see how difficult this friendship really was.  Although it was hard, I learned a lot about myself through it all.  Friendships come and go sometimes, especially when you are young, but when it happens as an adult, I think that if you take the time to think about it, as painful as it might be, there is much self-knowledge to gain.

I know that I present only my side, but it always felt as if there were a heavy burden on me.  Everything that I said and did was over analyzed.  ‘Why did you say that?’  ‘You should have said this’ and on and on.  It was just too hard.  I tend to be somewhat of a ‘peacemaker’ and so I went along and tried to adapt and ‘say the right thing’.  The interesting thing is that I didn’t even recognize it at the time.  It took years to slowly become aware that I was being smothered and it was then that I began to distance myself. 

I probably could have handled it differently and been more confrontational but that isn’t my nature.  I simply tend to walk away.  Years later I can honestly say that I miss the friendship but not the toxicity.  I feel good about the fact that I did something about it.  It has been really revelational.  I now have a clearer idea about who I am and what I give and don’t give in friendships (and relationships). 

It’s a grown-up thing, I suppose.