By David Joel Miller, MS, Licensed Therapist & Licensed Counselor.
Some friendships are very conditional.
When things are going well, you’re likely to have many friends, but once things get tough, those friends disappear. When you’re throwing the party, they are there, when it comes time for the cleanup those friends have vanished. When your life is working, these friends want to be associated with you, but when times get hard, they moved on.
One article I read described these folks as “Clear weather friends.” When life is sunny, you see this person, but the first raindrop washes them away. There are many names for these people, fake friends, pretend friends, Fairweather friends, clear weather friends, unreliable friends. Underneath all their pretensions they want something from you, but they’re not willing to reciprocate.
It’s tempting to put up with these fair-weather friends thinking that without them they would have no friends. When you feel lonely, you may be tempted to settle for fair weather friends. The worst form of loneliness is caused by poor quality relationships rather than by having too few relationships. So how can you spot these fair-weather friends?
Fairweather friends are never wrong.
Their motto is “I’m right; everyone should be able to see that.” If you’re afraid to disagree with them for fear of losing a friend, that’s a fake friend. When they let you know that you must always agree with them to keep their friendship, what you have is a fake friend, not a BFF.
When problems arise, you can’t tell Fairweather friends.
Fake friends expect you to listen to all their problems, but when your troubles come they don’t want to hear about. They especially don’t want to hear when you have a problem with them. While they expect you to be empathetic toward their issues when you talk about your difficulties, their answer is, “you need to get over it.”
With Fairweather friend’s criticism is a one-way St.
Fairweather friends feel free to criticize you. They may preface the comments with the statement “I’m just being honest.” But their honesty always consists of telling you what’s wrong with you. They have no problem pointing out your every flaw. What a fake friend can’t take is anything remotely like you criticizing them.
You must always agree with fake friends.
Fake friends will tell you that “If you disagree with me about that there’s something wrong with you. I write, I know I’m right.” Rather than sympathy and understanding when challenged, they always attack. With Fairweather friends, it’s not possible to agree to disagree. They will always insist on being right and on your agreeing with as a condition of keeping their friendship.
Fake friends enjoy criticizing you.
Fairweather friends enjoy telling you what’s wrong with you. Rather than building you up, they tear you down to make themselves feel better. If you have a friend, and every time you’re with them, you come away from that visit feeling worse than when it started, good chance you’ve identified a pretend friend.
Fake friends are not empathetic.
Fairweather friends don’t want to hear about how you feel. How you feel is not important to them. They may even tell you that you shouldn’t feel that way. When you’re upset, you’re likely to hear, “Stop being so emotional.” They dismiss your feelings. But these Fairweather friends have no problem burdening you with their miseries. When it comes to conflicts, fair-weather friends will tell you, “If it upsets you, it is your problem.”
Why don’t you believe me, if I said it then it’s true?
Fake friends have the belief that if they say something, that makes it true. They expect you to believe what they say even when all the evidence contradicts their statement. They like to say, “Why don’t you believe me, would I lie to you?”
I don’t want to talk about it.
Pretend friends avoid discussing difficult topics. When problems arise in the friendship, they want to sweep everything under the rug and pretend it’s all your fault. Lack of openness is a characteristic of fake friends.
Staying connected with David Joel Miller
Six David Joel Miller Books are available now!
Bumps on the Road of Life. Whether you struggle with anxiety, depression, low motivation, or addiction, you can recover. Bumps on the Road of Life is the story of how people get off track, and how to get your life out of the ditch.
Dark Family Secrets: Some family secrets can be deadly.
What if your family secrets put you in danger?
Letters from the Dead. The third in the Arthur Mitchell mystery series.
What would you do if you found a letter to a detective describing a crime and you knew the writer and detective were dead?
Casino Robbery is a novel about a man with PTSD who must cope with his symptoms to solve a mystery and create a new life.
Planned Accidents The second Arthur Mitchell and Plutus mystery.
Sasquatch. Wandering through a hole in time, they encounter Sasquatch. Can they survive?
For these and my upcoming books; please visit my Author Page – David Joel Miller
Books are now available on Amazon.
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For more about David Joel Miller and my work in the areas of mental health, substance abuse, and Co-occurring disorders, see my Facebook author’s page, davidjoelmillerwriter.