6 Types of Toxic Friends and How You Can Deal with Them

However, if you are at your wit's end and willing to try one more thing before calling it quits, try finding fault in the Fault-finder. Those who criticize and find fault are often unable to take it from others. If you do criticize the Fault-finder, it may break the spell of negativity that is now allowing this friend to say and do anything toward you. When the shoe is on the other foot, she may suddenly have an "ah-ha" awareness of what it feels like to others. But beware: The Fault-finder might cut off your friendship forever rather than deal with your criticisms or even try to understand the larger message you are trying to convey.

See Chapter 2 in When Friendship Hurts for an analysis of the 15 additional types of potentially negative friends-The Taker, The Double-Crosser, The Risk Taker, the Cheat, The Discloser, The One-Upper, The Rival, The Downer, The Rejecter, The Abuser, The Loner, The Blood Sucker, The Therapist, The Interloper, The Copy Cat, The Controller, and the Caretaker -- as well as an exploration, with examples, of the "ideal" friend, a quiz, "Recognizing a Harmful Friendship," and a checklist of factors that distinguishes positive from negative friendships.

Dr. Jan Yager, who is a speaker, consultant, sociologist, and journalist, has studied friendship for more than two decades, since it was the subject of her sociology dissertation (City University of New York, 1983). Dr. Yager, who did graduate work in art therapy and has a masters degree in criminal justice, has taught at the University of Connecticut, St. John's University, Penn State, and The New School.

From WHEN FRIENDSHIP HURTS by Jan Yager. Copyright ©2002 by Jan Yager, PhD. Reprinted by permission of Fireside, an imprint of Simon & Schuster, Inc.

This excerpt contains the opinions and ideas of its author and is designed to provide useful advice in regard to the subject matter covered. It is provided with the understanding that the author and publisher are not engaged in rendering legal, psychological, or other professional services in this document. The author and publisher specifically disclaims any responsibility for any liability, loss or risk, personal or otherwise, which is incurred as a consequence, directly or indirectly, of the use and application of any of the contents of this excerpt.

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