Friendship is hard. Especially when you're in your 20s and trying to actually figure your life out.
The evolution of friendship during this time can be somewhat difficult to come to terms with. If you're in college, you're beginning to understand some friendships weren't meant to go the distance.
If you've left college, you've already dealt with those feelings and had to shift your definition of friendship as schedules, jobs, locations and romantic situations have changed.
Your 20s are a time in your life when you're giving more consideration to what and, more importantly, whom you want in your life.
Obviously that's totally terrifying, but this is the time in your life where you can be as selfish as you want in order to start living your life in the happiest and healthiest way possible.
Unfortunately, this usually means it's time to assess your friendships and realize some of the people in your life no longer benefit you and could even be holding you back.
These are the friends it's sadly time to cut ties with. Some will happen organically, but there are a few types of friends you should consider making a clean break from.
1. The Bragger
Everyone has one of these friends. You know, the friend who will never stop bragging about what's going on in their life.
They'll tell you their job is great, how often they get hit on when they go out, what their significant other did for them, the cool new thing they got. On and on and on.
The braggy friend wants to brag and have someone say, “Oh, that's so cool!” or, “Wow, that's awesome!” They, in essence, need some sort of validation, which can get super irritating. They want someone to look at their life and say, “I wish I could do that!” or, “I would never be able to wear that like you do!”
If your sole purpose is to build them up and never get a word in edgewise, or they don't build you up in any way or even ask how your life is going, it's time for the relationship to come to an end. Friendship is a two way street, my dudes.
2. The Complainer
Similar to the constantly bragging friend, the complainer will get ahold of you just to complain about all the problems in their life.
Sure, we're all totally guilty of venting to our friends and then just moving on without really asking how they're doing, but it's the friend who constantly complains to you about everything and brushes off your complaints that's an issue.
If you find yourself as this type of friend, try and rein it in. If you're only asking your friends how they're doing as a perfunctory measure so you don't seem like an asshole, you're being an asshole.
You can't just ask without actively being part of the conversation. Be a real friend and ask questions, give advice and create dialogue. Don't just dial someone up to complain, say, “Oh, that sucks,” and then get back to yourself.
If you have this friend, speak up and fix the issue or just move on. You don't need that kind of energy in your life. If you connect with this type of behavior, do what you can, otherwise you might wind up with a lot fewer friends than you anticipated.
3. The User
We've all done stuff for our friends that we would hope they would do for us if we were in their shoes.
We spot them cash when they leave their wallet at home or are short on their tab, we pick them up from the airport, we hold their hair while they puke. You know, simple things that we hope would be reciprocated for us.
But if you have a friend who takes advantage of your generosity and simply volunteers you for things you want no part in because they know you won't say no, it's time to go your separate ways. Generosity is something to be appreciated and reciprocated, not taken advantage of.
Do not allow them to guilt you into something and use “but we're friends!” as an excuse. If you don't want to do something, don't do it.
Moral of the story: Don't let the guise of friendship allow you to get taken for a ride.
4. The Can't-Make-Time-For-You Friend
As I've grown older, I've noticed not only is it difficult to see your friends because of different schedules, commitments, fiscal situations and relationships, but it's just become more difficult for us to get up and put forth the effort -- which sounds bad, but hear me out.
Say you've been working all week and your friend suggests something, sometimes the idea of leaving the house just isn't appealing. You'd rather sit at home watching Netflix and going to bed early.
That's OK. Your friend has probably done the same thing more than once.
That's not the same as someone who simply can't make time for you. Discussing the reason you don't want to go out and the reassurance that it has nothing to do with the friendship is different than someone who just constantly ignores your offers to hang out or could never be bothered to ask if you want to do anything.
This is especially annoying if you talk to this person frequently and believe you're close friends.
If you suggest hanging out and they constantly blow you off or pretend you didn't ask and in turn don't ask you to hang out, it's not worth your time anymore.
5. Marcia, Marcia, Marcia
If your friendship is entirely based on them, this person has got to go. Plain and simple. If they only want to talk about themselves, their lives, what they're doing -- they have to go.
That's not a friendship. That's a daily journal entry. The end.
6. The Unsupportive Friend
It's one thing to give advice and point something out that you may have overlooked, but it's an entirely different thing for your friend to tell you you're making poor decisions in regard to your career, your health, your romantic life or your finances.
If you find yourself constantly shitting on your friends' choices, try to remember it's not your life; it's theirs. They are entitled to make their own decisions and are not asking you to make them. They are asking for your support, not your condemnation.
If you hear, “Why would you do that? You're not even good at that,” or, “That's a total waste of money,” or, “I don't like your boyfriend, I think it's time you broke up," that's not a friend talking. That's someone who wants to feel powerful.
While it's hard to reconcile the idea of losing a friend, you need to think of yourself and how that person plays into your overall health and happiness. If they're constantly bringing in negative energy and not helping you grow in any way, that's just the way the cookie has to crumble.
There's also nothing wrong with it. It's the natural evolution of things. I've lost friends to relationships, opposing viewpoints and playing an extra in their lives rather than a more important role. It's just the way things happen.
Who you surround yourself with influences who you are and how you deal with things. Make sure to surround yourself with only the best and you'll be sure to feel loved, supported and fulfilled.