Know and understand the dangers of toxic friendship

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UNAIR NEWS – Humans are basically social creatures who cannot live alone. In this case, one of the most influential social environments on the character and psychological life of humans is the environment of friendship. Friendship often has positive influences such as making life happier, getting a good support system, reducing loneliness, and making life more meaningful.

Unfortunately, according to Dr. Primatia Yogi Wulandari, S.Psi., friendship does not always give a positive impact. In some situations, there are friendships that actually produce a negative impact on a person’s psychological. The popular term for this situation is toxic friendship.

“Friendship should be mutualism. If it only benefits one party, it could lead to negative and detrimental relationships, ” she said in the Healing Relationship discussion held by UNAIR Psychology program on Saturday, July 11, 2020.

According to the lecturer in educational psychology and development UNAIR, there are at least eight negative impacts caused by unhealthy friendships: stress, sadness, anxiety, self-doubt, feeling abused, feeling not being yourself, loss of trust, and making individuals always feel giving.

In the perspective of psychology, there are seven types of toxic people that we might encounter in a toxic friendship relationship. The first type is the user, they will only be there when they need something. They tend to be manipulative and when their needs are met they will just leave. The second type is the leech which tends to depend on us. Third is the drama queen.

“This type may be found in many circles of friendship. But some also found among men. For them life is full of disappointment and sadness so they always feel they need attention, ” she said.

The next type is negative nellie where individuals always complain and think negatively, even on positive things. The fifth type is critical cathy which likes to criticize. Unfortunately, the criticism conveyed is not constructive criticism and instead tends to bring down. The sixth type is the gossip hound who likes to spread gossip. You have to be careful with this type because they have the potential to leak secrets. Meanwhile, the last type is the rebel which invites us to bad things.

How do we recognize a toxic friendship? Basically to determine whether our friendship is toxic or not, it all depends on individual perception. Does it feel disturbing and give negative impact on them? However, there are several aspects that can determine whether the friendship is toxic or not.

“There are ten simple questions. First is do you feel they like you for who you are? Second, do you enjoy being with them? If you feel tense, emotional, or other negative feelings appear during being with them, it could be that it is not a healthy friendship, “said Dr. Primatia.

The next question is: Do you try and want to spend time with them? Do they make you feel valuable? Are they always there when you need? Do they really listen to you? Do you believe and tell them your secrets? Do you think you recognize them well? Are you sure they will stay with you when there is another person? And, finally, Do you feel refreshed or excited after being with them?

“If there are three to five ‘No’ answers from the above questions, then your friendship is toxic. So you should pay attention to these things to recognize and overcome unhealthy friendship circles. You deserve more. Spend time with people who love you by overcoming or avoiding toxic friendship, ” she concluded.


Author: Intang Arifia
Editor: Feri Fenoria

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