All is fair in love and war. Over the past 15 years, I have been in several relationships and they have ended for a variety of reasons. One of the avoidable hindrances to relationships may be the company you keep. Essentially we would like to believe that our friends have our best interest at heart, especially when they offer advice or listen to our relationship issues. In many cases, this could not be further from the truth. If we are honest with ourselves, we all have or have had friends that fit that profile.
These kinds of friends tend to have ulterior motives. This includes platonic friends who have been in our lives since forever or friends who could possibly be romantically interested in us. Although they genuinely care, the heart wants what the heart wants. Thus, they unconsciously or consciously sabotage your relationship. Let's not forget about the ex that lingers around hoping to get a second chance. Now don't get me wrong, it is human nature to seek out counsel in the midst of a storm, but you have to make sure that the individual you seek out has your best interest at heart. It is my hope that by reading this article, you will become equipped with the power of discernment. Without further ado, here is my list of "The 10 Types of Friends Who Will Ruin Your Relationships."
The Platonic Friend
As stated earlier, this type of friend is the one that you've known your whole life. He or she is the one that you have kept in contact with over the years. We tend to seek counsel from them because they know us best. Just because this may be true doesn't mean that they will give you the best advice. They often mean well and have your best interest at heart. However, their opinion may be motivated by other factors. For example, their advice may be based on their past experiences. You know the, "I don't want you to go through what I went through," type of experiences. Or they may feel like they know what's best for you since they have been in your life for so long. He or she may be your lifelong friend but that doesn't mean they know what's in your best interest relationship-wise.
The "Secret Crush" Friend
This kind of friend is the one that smiles in your face. Behind closed doors, they want what either you or your mate. Beware of this kind of friend. The advice you receive is tainted by their hidden agenda. They will tend to hint that you should leave your significant other. He or she may say that your mate isn't good enough for you. In short, their advice will be fueled by negativity and jealousy. In secret, they hope that they will succeed and get you or your mate, whichever one they may desire.
Your ex is always an interesting character. They believe that your friendship is the open door to get back with you. These are the worst kind of friends because they are relentless in their quest to try to get you back. Proceed with extreme caution when you encounter this kind of person. You can never trust the advice in which they give. Their agenda is clear but sometimes you trust their advice because of their loyalty. Don't listen to them unless you feel that what they say is useful.
The Ex-girlfriend/Boyfriend's Parents
Even though you have ended your relationship, you still maintain a great friendship with his or her parents. They may try to persuade you to get back with their son or daughter. Their parents will highlight all of the positive aspects of being with their son or daughter. Have you ever heard this line, "He or she would never do that," or "You know things weren't that bad when you were with my son or daughter?" The parent's may like you but their objective is clear. They want to sabotage your relationship so that you will get back with their child. To be clear, this isn't always the case, however, nine times out of ten this is usually their ultimate goal.
The Clingy Friend
This is the friend that always wants to always be in your presence. They want to know everything that goes on in your relationship. He or she is your right hand and is always around and wanting to be included in your activities and outings. You never know! The clingy friend is usually the first to disapprove of your mate. Why is this? It's because your mate is taking you away from him or her. This sparks jealousy and leads to bad advice. I wouldn't trust the advice that this type of friend gives you. It's like a lion taking advice from a zebra on how to be a lion. It's not going to lead to anything good. Trust me, I know from experience.
Well, that concludes part I. In part II, I will unveil the final 5 types of friends who can potentially ruin your relationships and also provide a concluding discussion.
Follow Matthew Lynch, Ed.D. on Twitter: www.twitter.com/lynch39083