I previously did a blog on the topic of toxic people focusing on seven types of noxious individuals. However, I have found that some people do not fit neatly into only one category or one specific grouping. Instead, they are a smorgasbord of toxicity boiling in a caldron loaded with controlling narcissistic self-importance with a smattering of jealousy. Many times these poisonous people can even be marinated in drama smeared with a dash of exaggeration and are dictatorial.
For our health, it is our responsibility to weed through and find the tumultuously pernicious friends and think. Have we lost so many friends that we are eager to sacrifice our health and wellbeing not to lose another compadre? Between you and this malicious cohort, who has a more significant influence on the other? Do you lift them to your level, or do they pull you down and make you align with their insidious behaviors? In this blog, I will tell you about a few of the virulent people in my life and how I answered these questions.
Take, for example, my friend Brad who is a massively materialistic monster that often stretches the truth. When his parents died, they left him not much money but did leave him a nice average American house and two used cars. This gift has caused him to feel superior to others, claiming that their parents should have left them an inheritance as well. If you spoke to Brad, you would quickly understand that he only cares about others if there is something in it for him. He says that he is a Christian, but his thoughts belie him his words contradict him, and his actions prove him wrong.
If you are keeping someone like Brad in your friendship quiver, you need to answer some of the aforementioned questions. Does this person put you in an awkward position where you must contemplate going against your beliefs? Are your health concerns threatened or put at risk because they have not considered your MS? Do you have a stronger pull on them while trying to make him or her a better person?
I decided to keep Brad as a friend because I understand that I have a greater pull on him then he has on me. When we palaver, I sprinkle love, kindness, and compassion into all topics making sure that he walks away with no negativity from me. When he uses a bitter barb towards someone, my response is usually some positive affirmation loaded with benevolence.
There is my friend Joe who has changed significantly and now has become toxic in several ways. Fifteen years ago, we met, and he began helping me in various ways, driving me places, like doctor appointments. He had done more for me than any other person in many years had ever done. However, recently he is newly divorced and alone, and in the last twelve months has become extremely venomous towards me. He has begun to lash out at anything that I do if it does not coincide one hundred percent with the way that he would do them. I tried to make him understand that the way I do things may be different, but they are still good. Alas, sadly, for my health, I have decided to sever the ties of our irreparable friendship.
Joe, as a guy who is in his late sixties, is very stubborn and set in his ways and not willing to accept the opinions of others. He is not willing even to bend his ideals to the possibility that someone else could be correct. I have no impact on him, so I have no ability to show him that there is more than just his way. These facts lead me to the realization that my health is more important than our fifteen-year friendship. I have made the decision to remove the cancerous cohort from the body of friends that I have. I am monumentally mournful at the loss but feel better that this stress will no longer impact my MS.
It is difficult to purge a toxic person who has been an exceptional friend for an extremely long time. A confidant who has helped you immensely and made an unquestioningly huge difference in your life is hard to ditch. I took the straight forward approach deciding to simply be an adult and write him a heartfelt letter explaining everything. It was a challenge, but I had to remind myself that my health comes well before any friendships.
On the other hand, there are a few toxic people in my life that I have decided to keep around. I feel that the benefits of our friendship outweigh the negative aspects as I think I have a stronger pull away from the dark side. However, for our friendships to continue, I cannot and will not be the only one to acquiesce to the ideas of others. Some days I have to put me first and say to them it looks like today is not your day, so we are going to do my thing instead.
Friends come and go, but the importance of your health remains the same.