One of my favourite quotes about friendship is from the Bible which says “there is a friend who sticks closer than a brother” and though I don’t keep much friends I know that this statement stands true and I also know that there are friends that are worse than enemies. Identifying which friend is “closer than a brother” and which is worse than an enemy is very important so as to take appropriate steps in keeping the former and discarding the latter.
A lot of people find it difficult to end abusive friendships, feeling they might offend the friend or might not make another friend, feeling like they owe them loyalty. But the truth is friends can exert a great influence on the direction one’s life always take whether for good or for bad. Some friends you may never get to meet again in life after a particular stage in life passes or circumstances that brought you together changes, but the decisions taken under their influence can last a life time.
A friend is a person who is usually not a family member or lover that you know very well, have a strong liking for, share trust, loyalty, respect and sometimes beliefs. Friendship is a relationship of mutual affection between people. It is more an interpersonal bond than an association.
According to Aristotle as written by Associatesmind.com, there are three types of friendships and they are:
Friendship based on utility, this means the friendship is based on mutual usefulness and implies when usefulness diminishes or ends, the friendship also subsequently ends.
The second type of friendship is based on pleasure or delight, that means the friendship is in place to eventuate one’s own pleasure – a self focused relationship.
The third type of friendship is based on virtue. Participants share a set of values and principles of a moral nature. It is usually selfless and constructive.
A wants for B what is good for B for the sake of B. This is a rare type of relationship, yet less likely to metamorphose into an abusive friendship.
Abusive friendships are common. Some are obvious yet victims do not know how to handle them. Others are concealed and need to be unveiled and handled appropriately. There are signs through which one can identify an abusive friendship. Some of these signs will be discussed below alongside suggestions on how to deal with abusive friends. These signs are inclusive but not exhaustive parts of a large pool of signs.
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