Do you know why true friends are considered a treasure these days? Because it’s so damn hard to find one. Unfortunately, most of us are surrounded by toxic people who only pretend to be our friends so long as they can use us.
It has become very difficult to spot these fake friends because most of them have become real pros at faking friendships. I’ve compiled a list of signs of a fake friend to help you identify and deal with them.
You should always remember one thing: it’s better to have one friend you’re sure you can always count on than to have a wide social circle where you can’t tell for sure if all those people are your real friends.
I always say that God chooses our family members for us, but we’re the ones who choose our friends. That’s why if you allow your friends to disrespect, manipulate, or belittle you, you’re the only one to blame.
Good friends are hard to find these days because the world is full of fake friendships. That’s why you should consider yourself lucky if you have someone you’re sure you can always count on.
If you have a solid group of friends, guard those friendships because they’re definitely one of the most valuable things in your life.
15 Clear Signs Of A Fake Friend
Even though it’s become challenging to spot fake friends nowadays, there are still some pretty clear red flags of fake friendships we should all look out for. So, if you want to know how to tell if you have a fake friend, just keep reading below.
They use you for their personal gain
A bad friend will always reach out only when it’s convenient for them or when they need something from you. They hang out with you only because they want to take advantage of you.
They don’t want to spend quality time with you or to get to know you better. They’ll ask to get together only when they need you, and this is one of the most obvious signs of a fake friend.
They’re never there when you need them most
Your close friend should be someone who is always there for you – someone who will stand by your side no matter what and who wants to share everything with you, the good moments as much as the bad ones.
If you can never count on your friend because they were never there for you when you needed them the most, I’m sorry, but the truth is you’re in a toxic relationship, and that person was never your real friend.
They’re constantly pointing out your flaws
A good friend is someone who knows you better than anyone else. They’re a person who respects, accepts, and embraces all your flaws and imperfections. It’s someone who accepts you the way you are and encourages you to be a better version of yourself every day.
On the other hand, a bad friend will always try to emphasize your flaws and make you feel bad about those not-so-perfect parts of yourself.
They know what your bad sides are, and they’ll try to point them out often just to hurt you. They’ll do it because they want to suck the confidence out of you, and that’s something you should never allow.
They try to manipulate or control you
A healthy friendship consists of two people who try to understand and respect each other’s choices and decisions. It’s a healthy relationship where both sides have different interests and perspectives and still try to be compassionate and understanding towards each other.
Only a bad friend would use your sincere feelings to try to take control of your life. They’ll also try to make you feel guilty in order to manipulate you into doing something they want you to do.
That would lead to a codependent relationship, which would harm your emotional and mental health. Unfortunately, I was dragged into such a relationship, and it took me a while to understand that I’m the only one who has control of my life.
Your accomplishments make them jealous
A good friend is someone who’ll be proud of your achievements and always rejoice in your accomplishments. They’ll see your success as their own because friendship is truly one soul separated into two living bodies.
If you feel like your friend is envious of your success and all your accomplishments, I’m sorry, but you’re dealing with a very bad friend, and you need to let go of that friendship for your own peace of mind.
They don’t stand behind their words
Trust represents the essential foundation of every healthy relationship. However, we all know that it’s something that needs to be earned with time.
That’s exactly why real friends would never lie to you or break their promises. They’re aware that it can cost them losing your trust, which would harm your relationship deeply.
You feel disrespected in your friendship
When it comes to these kinds of close relationships, trust and respect go hand in hand. You can’t maintain a healthy relationship without any of these.
If your friend is gossiping about you to your mutual friends, it’s a clear red flag they don’t respect you, and it’s also a warning sign that they have never been a true friend.
They constantly put you down in front of others
If your friend continuously tries to belittle you in front of other people, it’s a clear sign that they don’t care for you or your friendship. That so-called friend knows that it’ll hurt your feelings, but it still doesn’t stop them from putting you down.
A good friend will always stick up for you even when you aren’t around. They’ll never allow anyone to speak badly about you because it’s simply what best friends do; they always have your back.
They don’t support your choices…
A real friend will always stand with you, supporting you in achieving your goals and dreams. Maybe they won’t always agree with your decisions and choices, but they’ll always try to support them no matter what.
The unfortunate truth is that if your friend isn’t supportive, that only means they’re envious of your success. This can only lead to the conclusion that your friendship is fake.
And they never defend you in front of other people
As I have already said, real friends always have your back, even when you’re not around. They’ll never allow anyone to trash talk you because protecting you is simply their primary task.
A bad friend won’t ever defend you when other people are gossiping about you because they simply don’t care for you. They just don’t have the virtue of loyalty, and that’s why they can never build a deep and strong bond with other people.
They don’t care for things that are important to you
In friendship, both sides should have different interests and perspectives. However, if your friend doesn’t care about things that are important to you, it’s a warning sign that they don’t care for you as much as you do for them.
I know that we all run to our friends whenever something good happens because we want to share the good news with them. But sometimes, it’s better to keep it to ourselves because we’re surrounded by fake people who only pretend to be our true friends and will never rejoice in our success.
They always ditch you for their romantic partner
If your so-called friend always breaks off plans with you or ignores you every time they’re dating someone, I think it’s pretty clear you aren’t dealing with a good friend here.
A real friend will always find a way to balance their romantic relationship and friendship because both relationships are equally important to them.
You always feel like you’re walking on eggshells around them
If you don’ t feel comfortable around your friend, it’s a good indication that you’re in a fake friendship. You should never be afraid of their reaction if they’re your true friends.
We all have bad days, but being in a difficult situation doesn’t give someone the right to lash out. A fake friend will use you as a punching bag to take out their feelings.
They’ll put themselves on a pedestal
If your friend has a narcissistic personality and you think it’s ruining your friendship, you don’t have to cut them out of your life immediately.
You can still hang out with them, but it would be better for you to consider them a frenemy. The fact is that most narcissists can never have true friends and build deep and real connections with other people.
They’ll criticize you, make you feel bad about yourself, and make you doubt your worth. Narcissists will try to manipulate you and make you think that they’re so much better than you are and that you need them more than they need you.
They’re real energy vampires
If your friend only shares negative energy, you should distance yourself from them before their bad vibes start affecting your mental health.
You should cut that person out of your life before they zap your emotional energy. If you don’t, they’ll simply feed on your energy until they completely drain the life out of you.
10 Efficient Ways To Deal With A Fake Friend
Now that we have talked about the signs of a fake friend, it’s time to find out how we should handle those toxic friendships. So, pay close attention to these tips below.
Throw them off their pedestal
Before you even confront them about their fake intentions towards you, you should throw them off the pedestal they put themselves on.
They can’t always be right. They aren’t the smartest nor the wisest. They aren’t perfect because they also have flaws, just as we all do.
Their bad behavior most likely stems from their narcissistic personality. Before you break up that toxic friendship, you should warn them about all the harm their behavior is doing not just to them but also to the people they care for.
If you have recognized most of these signs of a fake friend in your friendship, you should definitely confront your friend about it. Get all of your thoughts and feelings out.
Don’t do it over social media because it would be easier for them to avoid speaking about it, but if you do it in person, they won’t have any other option but to talk to you. Besides, discussing these serious and important issues over social media is so childish.
Refresh your boundaries
Every time you meet new friends, you have to be direct and clear about your boundaries right away. Set your limits, and don’t ever tolerate anyone who disrespects them.
If your friend has already violated your boundaries several times and you still aren’t ready to let go of that friendship, you can try to refresh your limits and be clear about the consequences of breaking them.
It may make your friend change their behavior towards you, that is, if they care for you at all. But, more importantly, your healthy boundaries will keep toxic people out of your life and help you get rid of fake people who don’t deserve to be a part of your life at all.
Get a grip emotionally
Realizing that a person you always considered a real friend has never cared for you the way you care for them can take its toll on you emotionally. You’ll most likely feel a whole range of emotions, from anger to sadness and despair.
However, you need to pull yourself together and be aware that you need to move on with your own life with or without them in it.
Try to stay out of their drama
One of the warning signs of a fake friend is when they constantly create unnecessary drama over stupid, irrelevant things.
There are two possible reasons for it: either they want to be the center of attention, or they just want to make you feel bad about something, thus allowing them to control you.
If you can’t end your friendship with that kind of person or if you’re in the frenemy stage of a relationship right now, the best advice I can give you is to stay the hell away from all the drama they want to pull you into. Just try to distance yourself from them for a while and see where that’ll take you.
Don’t ever respect someone who doesn’t respect you
I agree that you should never stoop to their level and behave as they do. Always try to be the bigger person, control yourself and try to respond to their negativity with kindness.
However, you should never respect them if they use every opportunity to mistreat and disrespect you. That would only give them the right to continue, and that would also mean that you lack self-respect.
Lower your expectations in that friendship
Tell me honestly, what can you expect from fake people ? Nothing good, right? That’s exactly why you should never set high expectations in toxic friendships.
You can never expect those people to be there for you or help you when bad times hit. Always remember, no expectations means no disappointment!
Don’t ever allow them to make you doubt yourself
Fake friendships can drain you emotionally and leave awful consequences for your mental health. Dealing with toxic people can damage your self-esteem more than you realize.
Those toxic people know that it’ll be a lot easier to control you if they make you start questioning your own worth. Therefore, you must always have unshakable faith in yourself because it’s the strongest weapon you have in fighting toxic people.
Pay attention to your own emotional needs
A healthy friendship is when two people share a deep emotional connection. However, that doesn’t mean that you should expect your friends to fulfill all your emotional needs. You shouldn’t expect it from fake people because they don’t care about your needs at all.
Being in touch with your own emotional needs will also help you deal with false friends and toxic people. You need to be more compassionate towards yourself and allow yourself to feel your emotions.
Simply leave them behind and move on
The fact is that you need to come to terms with the fact that some people need to be left behind. God wouldn ‘t ever send someone into your life to hurt you.
He sends them with a purpose, to teach you an important lesson. He wants to teach you that you should never give your heart to others too quickly. He wants you to know that trust and respect need to be earned, not just easily given to others.
That’s why the moment you realize that someone isn’t genuine and honest with you, you should cut them out of your life. I know it’s difficult to leave some people behind because they’ve grown on you, but it’s something that needs to be done to save yourself.
To Wrap Up
I hope you won’t recognize these signs of a fake friend in your friendship because I know how much it hurts to realize that a person you considered a true friend was faking the friendship the whole time.
The best thing you can do to save yourself is to simply move on and leave that toxic friend in the past. I know it’ll tear you up emotionally, but unfortunately, sometimes it’s our only choice.
I have known my best friend, pardon my ex- best friend, since high school, and I wasn’t able to see all those red flags that she was only using me for way too long.
She was my biggest confidant, a person I always admired the most. I just can’t describe how much it hurt when I realized that our friendship was fake because evidence showed that she was never actually a true friend.
I really believed that were BFFs. Silly me, I was even sorry I didn’t meet her earlier. I was sorry I didn’t have someone like her in middle school.
However, I realized that she was only a lesson God sent me to teach me that I shouldn’t trust people so easily and never give too much of myself in relationships.
It took me a while, but I understood and accepted that my only option was to end that friendship and move on with my own life. I learned that fake people represent trash that needs to be taken out of your life.
I know it doesn’ t feel easy, and I won’t lie to you: it’s indeed anything but easy. However, once you accept that it’s for your own well-being, it’ll be much easier to end that friendship.
In the end, I just want to say that no one is worth wasting your precious time and that no matter how much you love and care for someone, you should never tolerate disrespect.
The world is full of toxic people and fake friends, and if you have a true friend, you should consider yourself so damn lucky.