Bad Company: Are Your Friends Really Friends?

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“Put a rose in a sack of fish and soon the rose will start to stink too. Be careful of the company you keep.” – His Holiness the 17th Karmapa Urgyen Trinley Dorje.

Are your friends really your friends? Are they supporting and enhancing your life or are they teaching you to think and behave in darker ways that you never thought you would? The company you keep is so important. They will change you in more ways than you know.

I have been wanting to write about this topic for a long time as it is something that affects each and every one of us. And, it is something that becomes more obvious the older I get. I really hope all of you reading this will leave a comment and tell me your thoughts on this matter as I would love to know what you think.

Why your friends are important

We all know that friends are important in our lives. They keep you company when you are bored and they love you when you are sick or sad. But this isn’t what I am talking about. I am talking about the fact that your friends are (other than your parents) the most influential people in your life. You spend hours upon hours with these people and after a while you start to mimic their behavior. Your friends change you.

Take a look at the quote at the start of this article. It is a very important quote to understand. If you go off to a mountain retreat and live with monks and yogis you will find that your behavior and outlook will naturally start to become very peaceful. If you go to Wall Street and hang out with cocaine sniffing wealthy executives you will find that you naturally become more greedy and competitive. The people you hang out with change who you are. Because, as humans, we take in information from the world around us and, more importantly, we try to fit in to that world around us.

Your friends are important. They play a big role in how you see and interact with the world. Your future is largely dependent on their influence. So, are your friends really friends?

Signs your friends aren’t really friends

Creative Commons License photo credit: presta

Now I want to go over a few signs that might indicate that your friends aren’t really your friends. I hope you will read over them and let me know if you can think of any others.

1. You have to be someone else around them
If you feel like you have to be someone other than your normal self around your friends then chances are they aren’t your real friends. We all know this feeling. You go out with these people but you feel like you need to dress or talk differently in order to fit in.

These people aren’t your friends. These people are tools you are using to try and be more popular. And this type of pursuit won’t get you anywhere at all. Next time you meet up with a “friend” take a look at your own mind and behavior and see if you are falling into this trap.

2. You gossip more
Gossip is a terrible thing. It hurts other people and it makes you feel bad about yourself in the long run. One sure sign that your friends aren’t really your friends is when you find that you gossip more around them.

In the new movie Doubt with Philip Seymour Hoffman and Meryl Streep there is a wonderful scene where the local Priest (played by Hoffman) gives a stirring sermon about gossip. The wonderful acting by Hoffman made this an extremely moving section of the movie – so powerful that I wanted to share it with you. Here is the transcript:

A woman was gossiping with a friend about a man she hardly knew – I know none of you have ever done this – that night she had a dream. A great hand appeared over her and pointed down at her. She was immediately seized with an overwhelming sense of guilt. The next day she went to confession. She got the old parish priest, Father O’Rourke, and she told him the whole thing.

‘Is gossiping a sin?’ she asked the old man. ‘Was that the hand of God Almighty pointing a finger at me? Should I be asking your absolution? Father, tell me, have I done something wrong?’

‘Yes!’ Father O’Rourke answered her. ‘Yes, you ignorant, badly broughtup female! You have borne false witness against your neighbor, you have played fast and loose with his reputation, and you should be heartily ashamed!’

So the woman said she was sorry and asked for forgiveness.

‘Not so fast!’ says O’Rourke. ‘I want you to go home, take a pillow up on your roof, cut it open with a knife, and return here to me!’

So the woman went home, took a pillow off her bed, a knife from the drawer, went up the fire escape to the roof, and stabbed the pillow. Then she went back to the old parish priest as instructed.

‘Did you gut the pillow with the knife?’ he says.

‘Yes, Father.’

‘And what was the result?’

‘Feathers,’ she said.

‘Feathers?’ he repeated.

‘Feathers everywhere, Father!’

‘Now I want you to go back and gather up every last feather that flew out on the wind!’

‘Well,’ she said, ‘it can’t be done. I don’t know where they went. The wind took them all over.’

‘And that,’ said Father O’Rourke, ‘is GOSSIP!’

In the name of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Ghost, Amen.

Gossip is, unfortunately, the product of many bad friendships. Often times we meet with people and, after running out of things to talk about, we start talking about the mistakes that other people have made. If you’re friends are making you gossip more it might be time to switch company.

3. You’re moving further away from your goals
Everyone has goals that they want to achieve. Some people want to buy a nice big house, other people want to travel and some of us want a good career. Whatever your goal in life is it should be supported by your friends. They should help you get closer and closer to this goal.

I went to school with some really motivated people. They knew what they wanted to do in life (doctor, lawyer, accountant, etc.) and they knew how they were going to do it. But around senior year a lot of these friends met with bad company that lead them astray. They started drinking a lot, taking drugs and skipping school. By the time exams came around they were so far behind that there was no chance they were going to get into the college degree of their choice.

This is a really sad example of how bad friends can change your future. The very act of hanging around with the wrong people can cause you to lose track and lose your way. If your friends are taking you further away from your goals then you really need to take a look in the mirror and ask yourself if they are the best thing for you.

4. You don’t notice any positive qualities growing
One thing that you will find happens quite naturally when you hang out with good friends is that your positive qualities will grow and flourish. If you find that no new positive qualities are developing and, in fact, you are developing some negative traits then it is time to be worried.

Creative Commons License photo credit: presta

As an example I have an old yogi friend who has spent many years in meditation retreats. Whenever I hang out with this guy I find myself becoming more loving and patient and relaxed. On the other hand, I have some friends who leave me feeling more anxious, agitated and angry at the world. There is a big difference.

Friends should bring out the best in you. They should help you to reach new heights, not bring you down to their problems. Take a look at how you feel during and after meeting your acquaintances and see what is going on with you.

But I can’t just give up on my friends!

With all this talk about leaving bad friends and finding better company you are probably having the natural reaction of not wanting to give up on your friends. Good. That is normal. It shows you have a heart. The task is to discover inside your own mind whether or not this is the best solution. And it is something that only you can ascertain.

For example, if you can stay friends with a bad influence because you feel like their example doesn’t rub off on you and, in fact, you are benefiting the person by being their friend then by all means you should stay their friend. But, on the other hand, if you are finding that this person is bringing you down and you really aren’t getting anything from the relationship then you might need to make the tough decision to see them less often.

Only you can decide what is the best thing to do. You know your own mind and behavior better than anyone else so if you can see changes going on for the worse you need to take action. Nobody else can take it for you.


The company you keep is important. They influence you for both the better and the worse. Take a look at your five closest friends and see if they are good for you. Because those five people are your biggest influences. You will surely begin to emulate them in one way or another.

Please leave a comment if you have anything to add on this subject. I would be really interested to hear your advice, thoughts and experiences with bad friends.

50 thoughts on “Bad Company: Are Your Friends Really Friends?

  1. I loved this because it contained so much insight and depth that I’ve yet realized about my own friends. I’ve experienced this just last night: after graduating, I attended parties with my friends of a decade or more. We’ve grown apart in recent years but after I had left them for the night I found myself having anxiety over it and over analyzing why certain looks were exchanged, unnatural things were said, etc.

    Yet during graduation I’d met new people that brought out friendly and positive qualities, and made me feel much better about myself. The contrast between the two groups has left me a little insane for the past week but I’ve now had a small door of insight opened. Thanks. :]

  2. I can only speak for myself, but I feel like these are all things that I know, but I tend to look the other way in some cases.
    In this day in age, I find it is so hard to meet and make substantial friendships. The general attitude is that of being self-centered. A lot of people are looking out for only themselves, and have ulterior motives, and only pursue friends to benefit themselves.
    I do not consider myself that type of person, I have many acquaintances, but few friends. It’s disconcerting, but a truth nonetheless.
    As much as I hate the seemingly never-ending cycle of said friendships, I can’t seem to get out.
    It’s a tragic flaw on my part I know, but I naively think that I can make a difference in people’s lives, and I strive too. But what I have found is that I give and I give, but nothing seems to happen. I am not looking for anything in return, other than appreciation, and the hope that maybe I could rub off on people.

    It’s frustrating, but it’s better than being self-centered and unfulfilled I’m sure.

  3. Very valuable advice, tough as you say but immensely valuable. It also reminds me of the interaction between the Buddha and Ananda:

    Ananda, the Buddha’s friend and personal assistant, once said to the Buddha that half the spiritual life consist of kalyana mitrata, spiritual friendship, or friendship with what is lovely. The Buddha replies, ‘Say not so Ananda. Say not so. It is the whole, not the half of the spiritual life.’

    Keep up the good work TDM. _/\_

  4. “There are three friends that do good, and three friends that do harm. The friends that do good are a straight friend, a sincere friend, and a friend who has heard much. The friends that do harm are a smooth friend, a fawning friend, and a friend with a glib tongue.”
    – Confucius

    and another:

    “Have no friends not equal to yourself.”
    – Confucius

    My thinking is that if you forget about friendship for a moment – you have an affinity with certain people. You can think of this as the crossing of our paths. But the crossing of paths can occur for a multitude of reasons, and can end just as easily.

    So when you think about good and bad friends, ask yourself – what is the nature of the affinity between us? What brings us together? What causes our paths to remain crossed?

    In some cases it may simply be shared history, convenience, or habit. In others it may be shared interests. I think in the best of cases it is a deep affinity based on similar character, common goals, and an equal level of virtue.

    We use the word ‘friend’ so freely, that it can include any number of people, regardless of how we truly interact with them. In my own experience, I have been surprised to discover that people I truly admired as friends were really only people I shared an interest with.

  5. So so true, thank you for this article (and all the others). I recently discovered your blog and its awesome..

    About bad influencing friends, I have some and have been one. I find it difficult though to let go when in a dark space in mind and one has grown so used to confining in them in these times. I will keep on trying though.

    Thanks again for all the good writings.

  6. Been there done that and have found that even though my mind would like to think that the stronger person would influence the weaker one…in reality it’s the other way around. As the stronger one, you begin to let things go so as not to offend the weaker person, so you basically become them.

  7. I agree with this comment. In the recent past., I have allways made an effort to help those in my circle of friends. However, while ones heart might be pure and desire nothing but the best for others, it sometimes does not work out. I have sadly, found that the best intentions lead to sadness and emmotions that were never deserved.

  8. I give and give and nothing happens
    no one cares,no appreciation, then the ones I tried
    to be friends with wont even talk to me now.
    Its hard to just forget and move on Because they are
    my Neighbors of 10 years. And we have known them for
    years and years all our life. We see them everyday,
    and at football games, the store,going down the road.
    The hard part is they won’t talk to me unless I go up
    to them first. Which means they are avoiding me
    and I have no idea why or what happened.
    They used to talk all the time but now its nothing.
    Not Knowing WHY is the hardest part.
    I would actually PAY to get the Honest Real Answer
    of WHY they just dropped me for no known reason.
    I really want to know what the problem is.
    I have no idea what happened.

  9. I appreciate your article it was a friendly reminder that I really need to sit back, think deep and figure out if my friends have my best interest at heart…I have been struggling with this for years as for all of my friendships are long term but one in particular has me feeling pretty down she tends to recycle her friends and does whatever works for her at the moment without a care on who she might hurt along the way as if she has an uterior motive with everything she does and gets off on bringing you down and is often envious and a true gossip girl.I really think what keeps us together is the amount of time we’ve known eachother it just doesn’t feel right any more I find I have to be just as phony as she is to feel comfortable around her.I believe it’s time to let go it is no longer a healthy relationship sad but true. Thanks

  10. It just seems every time you try to help, people just use you for their own intentions.
    I agree. I have 1 friend. Its funny, everyone likes him, not many like me on other hand, i dont really have anything in common, but he only hangs with me. Friends, and i mean people that will stick with you and never leave you out, are worth calling friends. Juat think of it this way, you can have 100 friends that most probably chicken out when going gets tought, oe you can have 1 that pull you oit of a s*ithole. Quality over quantity, make it count.

  11. I just want to say thank you so much for posting this! I have been feeling guilty because I said goodbye to a friend who I love and care for very deeply. I just started getting migraines when we were supposed to get together or felt really uncomfortable because of the increased drinking and what I define as sideways behavior. When almost insulting or directly insulting behaviors are taking place. I made excuses for this for years until fairly recently I said good bye. Maybe it is because of my early fundamental religious training or unnecessary guilt. I am sure my meditation practice will continue to shed light on this. But having what I did be validated in some form means more than you could know! This is like absolution of unnecessary guilt. It was not an easy decision and I will always love this person.

    Thanks again!

  12. A bitter pill. Avoiding friends that pull us away from the path seems conducive towards enlightenment..perhaps…at least at times. However my mind is divided. Would a bodhisattva behave this way? Also, if we cannot remain unmoved by the behaviors and thoughts of others how are we to ever achieve this with our own thoughts? It seems counter to equanimity. Then again perhaps I am defensive because I have been the bad influence at times.

  13. I know what you mean. It is hard. I have dealt with this with 2 people now. One was 10 years ago, the other 5 years. No explanation. One is a neighbor who turns their back to this day. Pure hatred for no known reason. The only thing to do is to “let”. Let it be as it is and then move on. It is no longer up to you. You cannot change them or their thoughts or reasons. I’m sorry this happened to you. I feel your pain and desire for resolution as I have it myself. Good luck.

  14. This is a great read. Well said. It is nice to know that I am not alone with my struggles with failing friendships. It is also sad to know that so many other people go through this painful experience.

  15. Hi everyone,very nice article and comments here I Have learned the meaning of true friendship,Get up in the Morning and look in the mirro and the person that looks back at you is a true friend,if you can’t accept and learn to live with yourself their is no way friendships can last,Some folks are just phony,pretend to be nice and loyal,trusting then they strike like a cobra hurting your feelings and destroying your enter soul,don’t let this happen folks life’s too short move on; yes we will miss these demons but you will survive and enjoy your lives,be good folks

  16. Thank you for your article! I’m going through a hard time with a friend of mine whom I considered one of my best friends. We weren’t friends for very long, but we were very close. We’ve both experienced life-changing events in the past few months, and I thought these events would bring us closer, but they actually made us drift a part. We see each other on a regular basis, but only because we are assistant dance instructors in the same group. It’s very awkward knowing that you no longer share anything in common with someone you clicked with, but I know that we no longer support each other the way we used to. I had a very hard time coming to that realization; I do not take failed relationships lightly – but I am now more at peace with us going our separate ways. Once you know you no longer hold the same positive influence in a person’s life, that is when you know it is time to bow out of the friendship and let the person go. Thank you again for your supportive words. They’re very inspiring.

  17. There were lots of insights in your article. The one that hit home is how we mirror our friend’s behavior. Personally, I stay alone a lot! I know it’s unhealthy but I’ve had really bad experiences with ‘friends’. I’m not sure if I ever had a true female friend. I try to be my best and I seem to always attract people who try to use me and the compete with me. I lift them up and they use it to put me down. I’m ending a long relationship with a friend. Everything I say she turns it into a competition.
    We met when I was doing well in my career and she was raising kids on welfare. I never once put her down. For ten years I encouraged her to accomplish a goal. I gave her lots of advice and literally helped her. Now I’m going through a rough period. It seems like she likes patronizing me. She takes any chance she gets to put herself on a pedastile( spelling???). She has not really reached her goal but you’d swear she did. She has gotten so cocky and arrogant but she still calls me to help her with her project. I feel used and I think she is telling another mutual aquaintence my business. Reading this article has really clarified my mind. Thank you for sharing. On the positive note I think I need to spend time figuring out where the good friends are. Any ideas???

  18. Thanks for sharing your problems. Perhaps you don’t need to find real friends but address the current issues with this friend. She might not even realize that she is upsetting you. I’d suggest talking to her about how you feel.

    Please let us know how you go.


  19. Its often been said that a person is the company they keep .
    A long time ago , i made friends with these people i met at the pub . I moved into their house , and all turned from good to worse .
    I was sleeping in a outside bedroom at their house at the time .
    These horrible people would go into my room while i was out , and steal money from my jar .
    I let these people use my car that i had saved up lots of money to buy . In a short while the car was ruined beyond repair . I had to take it to the car junk yard .
    I have learnt my lesson . Choose your friends wisely .
    First time is a mistake . Second time never again .

  20. i know this probebly does not apply to your alls comments but i would like to express what i feel,,OKAY,my freinds are really nice and kinda teachers pets so there not a bad influence but every day,my so called freinds do this to me…the only time they come to me is when there other friends ditch them and then thats the only time they will talk to me. they turn there back to me but yet my other freinds are trying every way to turn me against them when there even worse!!!! HELP!!!!!!!!!!

  21. I totally agreed what u had said. In the past, I have a best friend who always copies my homework. She was my classmate and we are best friend for years. Only from this year she had this habit of copy my homework. Not only that, when teachers are passing some notes, she always be the first one to take only hers she wont help me to pass to the back, I was so annoyed that I ask her why she cant help me to pass the notes, she just said “why are you making such a fuss?” I was so shocked and angry about her selfishness and ignore her for a few days. I even resist borrowing my homework for her to copy. I was so angry with what she had said and share this problem with my sister, she told me to stay away from her as she is not really a good friend for me, so I decided to switch my place other people without telling my “friend”. When my “friend” asks why I change my seat, I simply said I can’t see the board clearly. I can see she sense something was wrong when she ask me again “why I never heard you saying that before?” I simply give a stupid reason that “It’s been a long time, it’s just that I didn’t tell you” Even my other friends ask me the same question, as we are so close to each other and sits together for a long period already. But I don’t care I just don’t want to be used by my so-called-best-friend anymore. This carry on for two weeks or so, until she called me one night, saying that she was very sorry about what she had been saying, but she only realize that when she looked at my Face book post, and I just simply said it was okay as it is already over. But deep inside my heart, I keep telling myself don’t be cheated by her apology. From that day, she did not borrow homework from me anymore and we begin to chat like usual, until a month later she ask me whether I want to sit with her again, but I just said I could not see the board clearly if I sat my old place, which is a part true. But lately I was told by my other friend that she was gossiping about this matter with her close friend, this makes me a bit sad and but I decided to ignore it. We now got along quite good but I was still care about her words last three months. She says that I was such a fuss but never being thankful that I always lend my homework for her to copy! Please tell me what I should do!

  22. This was great. I’m in my late 20’s and it is amazing to see how your friends turn on you. I have had a few really good friends that turned out to not understand what is best for me to. For example, I was in a very emotional abusive relationship for several years and I had my best friends not understand and forgive me for needing time to mentally get better. From being in a past abusive relationship, my blood pressure increased and whenever I get stressed, I pick my health and take care of myself. A few months ago several friends came in and I went to meet them out. The directions I had gotten were wrong and thus caused me to be late. I could not get in touch with them and waited. I felt the stress of failing to meet them out (because they would tell me I never come out) and my blood pressure was raising. I didn’t feel good… so I drove home. I got a very mean message from a supposed to be best friend saying that I was a liar and that I always have an excuse. I told her that I needed to go home and take my mediction. She once again said she has had it. My conclusion from reading this has helped me realize a good friend will be there for you. If this happened reverse roles, I would of been a good friend and done what I could do to be understanding and supportative. I have now lost 2 childhood friends that think I’m a selfish, liar, and a bad friend.

  23. I have had this friend since my sophmore year in high school and then I have my bestfriend that I have known since 7th grade. Everytime I would hang out with the hig school friend I noticed she would talk bad about my best friend and soon I started talking bad about my best friend. Also when ever we were together we would gang up on my bestfriend it was like she was trying to wrip me and my best friend apart because she was jelous of it. Also she would get really aggrivated with me everytime I did something with my best friend like go shopping or something. It got so bad that one time I brought this friend to meet my grandparents and while we were there me and my bestfriend got in a really big fight and its because my personality changes when im around this girl, that I almost ruined my friendship with my bestfriend. It took my best friend, my boyfriend, and my mom to make me realize that this person was not a very nice friend I even told her a secret that no one else knew not even my boyfriend of 7 years and some how that secret got around and to my boyfriend and alsmot ruined my relationship. But despite all of that I still forgave her because im a forgiving person and I really honestly cared about her even tho she didn’t care about me. She has moved to another state now and I thought then I couold be rid of her but thats not the case she just wont let me go I just can’t get up the courage to tell her I dont want to speak to her any more. So I got a new number and I deleated her off my contacts list on all my social networking sites so she cant contact me. Sometimes its better to just end it quick and easy. And now I feel so much better and more positve about my self and my friendship with my bestfriend is the bets its ever been.

  24. Hi, this was a nice article. I always believe in God and seriously, believe me or not; God is around us, watching our every move. Good things happen to bad people but won’t last long. People around us are good to us as long as they need us. Once they feel that they they are earning more or they are in a good condition that hey can handle their own life and that they don’t need anyone (not even you): They wont care about us(or you). We are left alone. Yet, life is so long ( i hear life is short infact its not). One minute of a decision can change your life forever. The key to happy life (I dont mean a luxury life) is a positive feeling inside you. Pray God, think good (positive)and you will be successful and happy forever.

    Even if someone (or ur close one) has a million dollars in their bank account, they are not happy. Why? They are greedy and they want more. Always think money is nothing (its just papers or just a digital number that show up when you check ur bank balance). Earn atleast u need to , be happy, don’t think or analze how and where do people earn from. Make a small happy friends around you. Be happy what you earn for ( i know it wont buy you a BMW or the hottest girl in the world) BUT it will make you pure inside. Life is just the way you live not the way you want. Thanks and beware of greedy and negative friends around you. Be yourself….My personal best thought: The people who really cares about you is your family (Mom, Dad, brothers or sisters) no even your wife or your best friend. Thanks and have a gud night sleep..

  25. Very thought provoking.

    Particularly Your moving away from your goals and You don’t notice any positive qualities growing…

    I hope my son reads this, he needs to. Or include as part of the national curriculum so gets discussed in schools! Even better!!

  26. Thank you for sharing. I’m facing this kind of problems now, and I still figuring out what to do. Anyway, you teach me a very valuable lesson, I’m very appreciate it !

  27. i know dat i am in a bad company…but actually not my all friends are bad..only few of them…but if i left the bad ones…the others may feel dat i m bad…and get annoyed wid me…what do i do…??
    Moreover how will i face them(the bad ones)…as we are in the same class…and will meet everyday?

  28. I really liked this article !! Thank you for writing it !! Everything is so true !!

    I hate how there are so many bad friends out there. When I’ve had friends like that, I’ve tried, slowly, to make them more like me; calm, loving, etc. But unfortunately people are who they are and sometimes you can’t change them 🙁

  29. Some of my older friends checked out when I became successful. I have decided I am above it. I am past the point of feeling hurt, betrayed and angry. My mom always used to say it’s a compliment if someone envies you. That might be true, but if envy poisons a friendship to the point people don’t even congratulate you with your promotion, refuse to contact you for months and simply reject each and every change they get of meeting you…..

    Then it’s about time to move on.

    It’s a pity, but it’s really their loss. I know it’s hard to find good friends, but it is definitely problematic to find good friends if you continuously treat people in a negative, rejective and rude way just because YOU feel so intimidated by them.

    It’s just no use trying to fix my gay ex that refuses to come out of the closet and till this day tries to keep up his bogus story or my infinitely envious oldest friend who seems to think she can ignore the problem by just ignoring ME.

    I am saddened by the way these two people have treated me the past few years, but in my opinion this merely demonstrates their weak character and their poor judgement. If people get off on treating you like crap they merely show the world how intimidated and envious they are of you.

    Last month I decided I want to be surrounded by winners- not losers. Winners respects themselves and value the way they live their life and do not feel instantly intimidated by your success. Sadly, not everyone of my past fits into this caterogy.

  30. I have a best male best friend, and I used to be his manager, we became good friends due to we have the same interest. Of course i make more money than he does, ha has a lot of friends, and I feel that when he calls me to hang out if because i have always the drinks. he knows can get information from me about work due to we are good friends. I feel he really dont apreciated me as a friend, but only when he wants to drink is ok for me to be there for him. He has good morals and stuff because he knows i read about god and trying to be good, and he always reaching out for me to give him good advice and how to be better, but when i want to hang out with him, is always an excuse. what can I do, to handle this situation?

  31. My philosophy is ” I’d rather be a good friend to one person- than a hypocrite to many”. I have been a good friend to so many people but from a early age realized that not everyone who you wish the best for, will in tern wish the best for you.

    Thank you for the article which is so true— I worked with persons who pretended to be good for years. Gave them the best advice every time they had problems(they always came to me for help). I remember one person told me that our then boss liked me and she advised me to ” play with his and get involved to get the advantages”. I was shocked out of my wits and refused immediately– To my surprise, after I got a few promotions over the years for my hard work and helping others with theirs and bringing new ideas to the team, the same friends teamed up and wrote letters to HR that they believed that I was having relations with the boss… and don’t be surprised, they were still talking to me and asking for my help.. They didnt even know that someone who knew about their act told me who it was who wrote the letter. Its funny how people will gang up on you when they think you are excelling yet still smile with you and hate you.

    So what I did, I recently deleted all contacts of persons I know aren’t my friends from y social networks and have not contacted them in any way. It does hurt because I always knew they were against me but I kept being nice to them thinking they would change and be honest. i HAVE NO REGRETS AND I WILL TELL ANYONE GOING THROUGH THIS…I PRAYED ABOUT THIS FOR YEARS AND CONTINUED PRAYING FOR THEM BUT SOMETIMES ITS BEST TO ……CUT THEM OFF!!!!! You will forever give and never receive…. Read Matthew 7:6

  32. Enjoyed the insight into friendship. Actually what friendship is? I think it is a relationship of convenience to cater to the needs of mind which needs ventilation by way of sharing its thoughts with others. We unconsciously start this process in school, college, or work place. Then the viewpoints of those other people are liked or disliked by the mind and it starts giving the preferences to certain people, whom we start calling friends. Whenever there is conflict between your own interests and that of friend, the inner feelings of friendship come to an end. To keep somebody your friend for ever, you need to be in noneed mode.But then sometimes you feel, what use of keeping a friend , if not helpful in need. True friendship is in theory only, but to keep good company, never cross the paths with whom you consider your friend, never ask for favours. Read a lot of books. Friendship be confined to one or two persons with same economic status only. You must exhaust all your money, before you ask a friend or monetary help to keep the friendship going.

  33. thank you for all this because in school (im in grade 9 nearing the end of it) inculding me were 4 friends and two of my friends they make me really angry and annoyed and my other friend when im around her i can be myself otherwise for those too i have to keep up an act which i dont like one bit….those two of my friends i have tried telling them wat they were doing wrong but then they blame everything on me and ignore wat i say and they only care about their own feelings or each others mine dont even matter to them and the sad part is my other friend(the good one) shes leaving my school and going to some other one and then next year ill be with them and it used to be like that and i was extremly negative so i was hoping u would give me advice on how to handle those two friends next year because no matter wat i dont think i should run away from the problem??

  34. I loved this. Thankyou,
    Ive done bad by my friends. In the sense of getting way too intoxicated and being cruel to them. To the point now that I am not going to be forgiven. I know and I think somewhere in their hearts they know this isn’t the real me. I don’t know what to do? I have never acted this way and am really upset with myself for doing this.. I have admitted I was in the wrong 150%. What should I do now?

  35. Great article. As a Christian, I have found these things to be true, and would add:
    “A true friend cares more about your character than your comfort.”
    Also, NEVER take advice from someone who tells you
    “The most important thing is to do whatever makes you happy!” This is possibly the worst advice anyone could ever give you.
    Also, from my favorite piece of wisdom literature the Book of Proverbs:
    “A man of many companions may come to ruin, but there is a friend who sticks closer than a brother.” -Proverbs 18:24
    The Book of Proverbs says a lot about choosing your companions.
    Once again, good article. I re-posted it on my Facebook page, and I’m sure it will offend some “bad friends”. 🙂

  36. This is a very interesting article and some great comments from others who have experienced life up’s and down’s regarding friendship etc. I am 63 years years old and i have met many people through life’s journey so to speak. I have found good friend’s and bad ones some have been users only want you for take, take, take, and not give anything in return unfortunately so i have stopped seeing those so called friends as soon as possible. A true friend is someone who is there for you through thick and thin good or bad times, i have tried to live up to this myself if i can. Some people can stress you out if they drone on and on about things which you don’t need, but mostly my friends have been good ones which i am grateful for. That old maxim that sometimes friends can be better than some families is quite true i think but life is a journey as i have said and to learn by your mistakes can make you a stronger person i think.

  37. This is a very interesting article and some great comments from others who have experienced life up’s and down’s regarding friendship etc. I am 63 years years old and i have met many people through life’s journey so to speak. I have found good friend’s and bad ones some have been users only want you for take, take, take, and not give anything in return unfortunately so i have stopped seeing those so called friends as soon as possible. A true friend is someone who is there for you through thick and thin good or bad times, i have tried to live up to this myself if i can. Some people can stress you out if they drone on and on about things which you don’t need, but mostly my friends have been good ones which i am grateful for. That old maxim that sometimes friends can be better than some families is quite true i think.

  38. I have a friend who I thought was my best friend but she always like leaned across the lunch table and stuff to tell my other best friend something that was sooo important that it just couldn’t wait until afterwards. I then confronted her and she just blamed it on me! I didn’t do anything wrong! Now she’s asking ,e for forgiveness but I’m not sure I’m ready to be friends with her again. What should I do????

  39. Hey, Great article over there.

    One of my friends is a divorced drunk who can’t hold onto a job! Talk of debilitating company. I guess it’s a foregone conclusion; it’s about time I moved on.
    Problem is we’ve been friends since we were like 13 years old, and he’s a cousin to boot! Now he’s(him)like 41 years and obviously I am not helping much.
    I guess my wife knows this ‘useless friendships’ thingie coz she’s discouraged me from seeing him for years.
    So, courage brother, courage….

  40. I have several acquaintances, friends, and three close friends. I used to think that minimizing contact with one person who trusted (and hurt me) was reckless and immature decision, but I’m glad I did it. I’m not a stone.

    I’m considered to be a good listener to (my) friends. However, I don’t just give up on (a) friend(s) just because…he/she is not wearing my favorite branded items and we don’t have in common.

    I always try to understand one person due to the fact that some people do need somebody to talk to or help them conceptualize their situation and so on.

    After a few trials in my life, I learned to accept reality that some people just embrace their stupidity, ignorance, negativity, unrealistic ideas, etc. I can only changed/improved me, but those who don’t want to try. I have been giving my best advice to people. I was always a fair person and a good friend to those stubborn friends I dumped.I’m glad I have had them in my life.

    These days, I don’t give a rut whether I’m alone. It’s better than getting frustrated with some people. I rather train a shark on how not to eat me alive than with a backstabber or a conniving person.

    I don’t put up with negative people anymore. It hurt and frustrate me at first. Nowadays, I whistle or hum while cleaning my car. I find serenity and peaceful mind. I’m not going to save his/her day. I love “me.”

    Volunteer works have a purpose…I will spend my hours for a good cause than with some people who will make me feel bad about myself.

  41. Great article. One more thing is guilt. Friends who make you feel guilty because you can’t make it to a dinner or you can’t go to lunch with the group… Life is so busy and real friends make it count when you are together.

  42. Great comment Carole Heath I can relate to your wise words myself. I to have had good and bad experiences with friends. Some where users some where a real pain at times but mostly as you mention many where ok. I hope you have some like minded friends like your self you sound a very kind genuine person and they aren’t always easy to find.

  43. Having PTSD from a verbally and defaming abusive up bringing I learned to allow anyone to be my friend. I knew nothing about self worth or boundaries and didn’t even think I deserved them.
    It took me 50 years of hurt and pain to finally learn that I deserve both self worth and boundaries and that I have a right to be respected for both.
    It’s difficult and lonely but you learn who was really your friend or not. And you learn how blessed you are to finally be able to tell the difference and have the right not the wrong friends in your life.

  44. Dear Lauren,
    As I have grown older, I realized the ‘friends’ I used to have now seem very self-serving. I had a friend for thirty years, but because I moved and did not live in the same town anymore, this friend distanced themselves from me. They made all kinds of excuses as to why they could not connect or come to visit me-even though they had a car and went everywhere else in the world. So, finally realizing ‘their lifestyle and attitudes’ had changed and I will say, not for the better; I knew in my heart I was not ‘their friend’ anymore. The signs were very obvious to me. This person only valued friendship if it was ‘convenient’ for them. When this person had to go out of their way to connect with me, the so-called friendship was only ‘friends’ when it benefited them. The moral of this story is: go find friends who will have YOUR best interests in their heart and minds. Who will love you for WHO YOU ARE not what they can get out of you. Many blessings to you as you’ll make someone a very great friend when the true friend comes along.

  45. My friends dumped me as I totally changed the outcome of my life. Needless to say they still keep in touch just to see how the weather is and that is fine by me. God will bless me with a kindred spirit I deserve . I would rather be around things good than bad or downtrodden.

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