Emotional Dumping Ground: Identifying Toxic Narcissistic Friendships
6 Red Flags
Throughout our existence, we tend to have a lot of different types of friendships revolving within our lives. Statistically, if a friendship lasts longer than seven years, then it will more than likely last a lifetime. The best types of friendships are those that reciprocate kindness, fun, love, and support. Having an equal amount of respect and attention towards each other. These are the ingredients to help maintain lifelong healthy friendships with other people. In our darkest times, we can rely on certain people in our lives to be there for us when we really need somebody. Unfortunately, not all friendships follow this simple formula. If you read the first couple of sentences of this article and you already have had an epiphany about certain people in your life, you more than likely have someone in your life that you suspect is a toxic narcissistic personality.
1. The Phone Call Test
Give the suspected narcissist a phone call soon. If your friend spends more than 15 minutes talking about their problems and you haven’t said one full sentence the whole time they’ve spoken, they might be a little tiny bit of a narcissist. Nothing to worry about really. They’re human. They just needed to vent a little longer about whatever is going on with them but they are still happy to hear from you! They love you, they’re just a little vain. We all have our flaws.
If they spend 25 minutes or more talking about themselves and you’re not able to get in a word edgewise still, you are definitely talking to a narcissistic personality. It's nothing that cannot be fixed with communications to let them know how you’re feeling! If they are truly your friend than they will understand and change this nasty little habit. You matter too and you are not a dumping ground!
If they spend more than 45 minutes talking only about themselves and you still haven’t been able to respond or reply to anything they’re saying, run!!! It is more than likely that this person is using you as an emotional dumping ground.
**If at anytime the person talking stops in between the conversation and asks you for your input so you talk for more than let’s say, 10 minutes back and forth, they’ve completely passed the test. They generally want your feedback and they are generally wanting to listen to you as their friend. That means they value your input and appreciate you. They don’t want to just dump their issues with you like some free counseling service and send you on your way. Especially if you need to vent and need your friend to be there for you as well. Friendship is a two way street.
Automatic FAIL: If they fall asleep while you’re talking or when they wrap up their narcissistic fest, and finally ask how you’re doing. By obligation. Let’s say you talk for about 10 to 15 minutes and they suddenly have “to go,” that usually means since the conversation is not directed at them anymore, they aren’t very interested. It’s usually “my phones gonna die” or “so and so is calling me, I gotta go." It almost always ends the same way. You feel this sadness and a bunch of really messed up feels at once. Yes, you were played. No, you aren’t crazy for feeling that way. You really don’t deserve to feel that way because you are a priority too. If this happens more than half of the time then you are definitely dealing with a highly toxic narcissist. You need to recognize them in your life and give them the boot!
2. Drama: A Functional Part Of Daily Life
Drama is a driving force in the life of a narcissistic person. They will systematically and subconsciously create their own drama around them in their lives in order to function. Hanging out with a narcissist will consist of constant complaining about everything around them. Even people they don’t even know, coworkers, family, friends, etc. The narcissist has to hold a position of superiority at all times with everyone around them. They are never at fault, but somehow every single person in their life is always 100 percent at fault. They never do anything wrong ever or will ever admit to doing so. It is always the other person or something else responsible for the current state of things. Do not be surprised if peaceful times in your life makes the narcissist drift away from your friendship, but once your life is stricken with some sort of dilemma or confrontation, the narcissist suddenly has a whole new lackluster interest in the friendship again. It is instantly restored. That is because they can place themselves right smack in the middle of your circumstances and somehow try to make that about themselves. Revolving and gravitating to their desire of attention. Once again, the cycle is repeated. If you have ever tried to explain the pattern you’re seeing in your friendship to them, it is usually always met with the parade of excuses and absolutely no acknowledgement of their own selfish behavior or they get mad. They cannot function without this behavior.
Example: I’m sorry you’re feeling that way but like I’m having a crazy chaotic week, and so-and-so is been so crazy mean to me. My work is so stressful and my boss such a bitch to me. Me. Me. Me. Me. Me.
It is always very chaotic with a highly toxic narcissistic friendship.
How They Speak About Others Says Alot
3. One Upmanship
As stated above, the highly toxic narcissistic friend will make it a mission to keep the conversation and or theme of your friendship gravitated towards themselves. Always. So it is no surprise that one upmanship is a common practice here. It doesn’t necessarily have to pertain with your personal accomplishments when it comes to this but any topics you discuss with them. Subtly or outright obvious. You can pick up on his pattern quite easily.
4. Jealousy and Possessiveness
One of the most toxic behaviors above all with the narcissist is jealousy. To them you are an extension of their own being. You’re not your own person. More like property. Something as simple as introducing your other friends to the narcissist could definitely have consequences. They usually want you all to themselves. They are naturally suspicious of all other people that you interact with, it is not uncommon to hear commentary from the narcissist regarding your other friends in a very negative light. Their comments are definitely smeared in subtext. They want you to know that they’re your only REAL friend you have. Therefore nobody compares by far. They are superior. Everyone else is inferior to them.
5. Getting Away With Murder
Every person has their problems within their personal lives. We try to repair or better our human relationships the best way we can. Sometimes we make it and sometimes we don’t. How we treat our families or significant others speaks volumes about ourselves as people. This can be the narcissists natural playground. They can be capable of doing some terribly unethical things and they eventually become so accustomed to this shady behavior that it becomes second nature. Pathologically lying, cheating, or even stealing. Like a switch. It is hard to sit back and watch this unfold for very long until you have to take a few steps back and remove yourself from the situation. You are not a bad person for instinctively wanting to flee a train wreck waiting to happen. This person must learn to deal with the consequences of their actions and it might even be beneficial for you to not provide a pink fuzzy cushion when they get a heaping fat dose of karma. Reality checks are important for the narcissist.
6. Feeling Bad Energy Afterwards
You start to feel “off” after your hang out or even after speaking on the phone to this person. You sat there and basically absorbed their negative vibrations. If you have natural empathic tendencies than you will recognize what is going on immediately after. You have been emotionally dumped on and you literally feel like garbage.
Perhaps someday this toxic narcissistic person will learn that the world doesn’t revolve around them. It can take years for a super toxic person to become humbled by life. It IS possible though. If sharing your feelings with the narcissist doesn’t go well than you need to decide whether the friendship is worth continuing. It’s imperative that we try to sustain healthy relationships in our lives, platonic or romantic. We have control of who stays in our life and who goes. You are responsible for your own happiness.
“Fake friends; those who only drill holes under your boat to get it leaking; those who discredit your ambitions and those who pretend they love you, but behind their backs they know they are in to destroy your legacies ”
- Israelmore Ayivor