Recipe For An Unhealthy Friendship


Add 10,000 cups of low self-esteem. Be at a weird point in your life. Maybe you’re a freshman in college or something. Have trouble standing up for yourself and wince every time you look in the mirror.

Stir in 1 chance encounter with someone who’s magnetic and has a charisma that draws people in. They’re sexy, funny, mysterious, a real charmer. They will be your worst nightmare, but shhh! You don’t know that yet. Be socially vulnerable. Need a friend to run errands with or watch TV hungover on a Sunday. This person fits the bill perfect. They’re willing to be that someone you can call and do nothing with. Bingo.

Marinate 3 good months of friendship. Everything has to be special before it can get marred, before it can become the worst version of itself. Have the kind of nights together  that create long-lasting memories, and endless remember when’s? Feel relieved that you’ve found a friend who wants to be your other half. You had been feeling disconnected and now you’re plugged into something real.

Sprinkle 6 mean comments from your friend, the kind of comments that make your neck constrict and have you questioning everything about yourself. Oh no. The honeymoon is over. They know you well enough now to realize  you have a jelly backbone. Wonder if this is them using it to their advantage. Wonder if they’ll be putting you down on a regular basis. Wonder what you’ve gotten yourself into.

Pour and stir 1 new dynamic. Your friend has begun to be manipulative and make you feel badly about yourself daily. There has been a rapport established between the two of you that may be hazardous to your mental health.  It’s constant competition now which has forced you to become something you aren’t. Suddenly there’s tension about good grades and crushes when all you wanna do is sit on your couch with them and watch endless hours of television. But the shift has been too great. Your friend has morphed it into something completely different and now there’s no going back to lazy hungover days and exciting nights. You’ve been punked.

Drizzle 50 moments of disbelief. Do everything your friend tells you to do—things that are inconvenient, disrespectful, and just plain bullshit. Experience an odd mixture of invigoration and exhaustion. Walk away from every hangout session feeling fatigued, but also wanting the next kick. Who is this person and what have they done to your sense of self?!

Chop up 1 long epiphany. This person is FUCKING CRAZY and maybe a sociopath. They don’t understand the true meaning of friendship, and you won’t be the one to teach them. Sometimes the only way to build up your self-worth again is to have someone take it away from you every day. Start inching your way out of the door.

Put 1 last night on top. This ends everything and kills the relationship for good. There’s nothing different about this night than the others except you’re finally able to see things for what they are and have the power to walk away. Say goodbye as if nothing’s wrong. Never answer his phone calls again. Never give an explanation. What would be the point? They’d be incapable of understanding your points. To them, this is a good friendship. It works out great for them!

Add 1 giant sigh of relief. Feel like you had been experiencing everything as if there was a dirty film over your eyes. It’s like you’ve woken up from one long nightmare and now you don’t want to go to sleep ever again.

Garnish with 8000 pieces of self-respect. Be in disbelief over how you could have ever been in a friendship like that. Relate to the Madonna lyrics, “I’m not your bitch. Don’t hang your shit on me!” in a new profound way. Resolve to never befriend a crappy person ever again.

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image – Freaks and Geeks