The holiday season is here; it's the time when we catch up with family and friends both old and new, get filled in on the latest happenings and what has transpired in their lives since, well, last Christmas.
Has the friend you've known since grade school finally finish her PhD? When is your best friend's sister due with her second child?
But, playing catch up with friends this time of year can be tricky. You almost always seem to run into a friend who either passive-aggressively comments on your singledom, or the one who only shows up at parties and shamelessly dines then dashes.
These people remove the guilt you feel after skipping the holiday get-togethers to just stay home and Netflix-binge.
But, should you brave the storm and come visit, here are the shady, phony characters, otherwise known as “frenemies” you may have:
The Jealous Friend
Before anything else, I must point out that admiration amongst friends is a good thing; it's something encouraged. You need someone in your life to whom you can look for inspiration and motivation to chase your dreams.
But, beware of the type of friend who takes your successes the wrong way. This friend secretly seethes in envy whenever something great happens in your life.
Maybe this friend feels trapped and unable to achieve her own goals, or she simply wants to be the only one at the top.
If you hear rumors circulating about you getting that promotion by doing "overtime with your boss," or that your new fiancé has a dirty past and you're sure none of it is true, then behold the jealous friend working her craft.
The Social Climber
These friends are the only ones around at social events, and definitely business functions, where they can either meet a new business associate to invest in their Ponzi ventures, or at least someone who has connections to people with money and social status.
These social climbers try to charm the socks off people with their head-to-toe (arguably authentic) designer outfits and their seemingly highbrow adventures, but should you dare think of them as real friends? I bet you my Christmas stocking they don't even know your last name.
This might either be a coworker gunning for the same position or one of your BF’s female “buddies” with an ulterior motive. This person is just too good to be true.
She is desperately trying to get into your good graces, constantly complimenting you, going out of her way to impress you and flashing you a devious smile that reminds you of the Grinch.
Be wary of her, as she might just be waiting for the right opportunity to jump you and steal something you hold dear.
The Love-Obsessed Friend
When your friends fall in love, as a friend, you're elated and feel happy for them. But, there are some, who, upon meeting someone, leave you hanging and are almost never around while they chase after their latest object of affection. Then, they crawl back to you when they get dumped.
Of course, you get suckered into sticking by them and watching them whine and bawl while listening to their “profound” philosophies about love that’ll give Plato a run for his money.
That is, until they once again find a new subject to prey, and poof, off they go.
This type of friend is the pitiful, practically pathetic kind, not because they cannot afford anything, but because they just choose to get someone to pay for them, or actually cannot, but choose not to do anything about it.
They bring the real concept of charity to shame. They are only around when in need of money, a hitch or a free meal. This type of friend always comes up with the lamest excuses of why they are miserably destitute.
Whenever they are around, it feels like you adopted an obnoxious, helpless, conscience-lacking, expensive, full-grown baby.
The Self-Destructive Friend
Basically, these people personify every emo song. These types have absolutely no idea where their lives are going and you always end up bailing them out of difficult situations.
One minute, you’re taking in a good show at home, and next thing you know, you get a phone call from this friend, who just got kicked out of a club for picking a fight with the bouncer.
You’re their go-to person when all hell breaks loose, as practically everyone else in their lives already gave up on them.
You might be spending the better part of your holidays dealing with these people, asking yourself over and over why you’re friends with them in the first place. But, hey, as long as you surround yourself with the genuinely good and sincere people in your life, nothing should ruin the holiday spirit.
Maybe just keep your wallet close when the Parasite pays you a visit.