While it may seem like only the people that act negativity are “toxic,” that’s not always the case. We all probably have that “friend” who wishes only the best for us, but suddenly gets upset when we achieve something. Or the people who behave like they know everything. If you feel that something is off, you might not be overreacting. So it’s better to be able quickly spot the people who can poison your life.
Bright Side understands that we’re surrounded by different types of people and sometimes it’s difficult to tell whether their behavior is manipulative or if you’re being too sensitive. But if you feel that communicating with them is only hurting you, it’s better to make sure they don’t belong to one of these 11 types of poisonous people.
1. Highly opinionated people
While having an opinion and standing up for it is a good trait, sometimes people act like their opinion is the only thing that matters. Opinionated people can easily cross their boundaries and start giving unsolicited advice. They rarely consider the feelings of others or worry that they’re hurting someone with their remarks.
Opinionated people may say they’re sharing the harsh truth with you for your own benefit, but it’s not true. They usually try to boost their own self-esteem by using you and if you can’t set boundaries it’s probably better to just go away.
2. Gossip mongers
It seems like some people just can’t leave others alone. They know all the juicy details about the people in both of your lives and can’t wait to share this information with you.However, constantly listening to rumors and fake news only brings more negativity and influences your perception of life.
Keep in mind, that there’s a high possibility that a person who gossips with you is likely to share information about your personal life with others, as well. It also makes you a target and may make you feel like that person is only communicating with you to dig up some dirt on you and the people around them.
3. Conversation narcissists
Some people have the ability to turn every conversation into something about themselves. Conversation narcissists usually do all the talking and love to be the center of every conversation. It doesn’t seem like they’re concerned at all with your life or the things you may want to share with them.
While it might be a natural desire for every person to want to talk about themselves, after having a chat with a conversation narcissist you may feel emotionally empty. They act like your emotions aren’t important enough so they use you to express themselves and boost their ego.
4. Emotional vampires
Sometimes it feels like some people can drain your happiness and energy with just a simple conversation. Emotional vampires are usually manipulative, feed on negative emotions, and can easily dominate people, but their victims don’t recognize this.
Unfortunately, it can be challenging to spot an emotional vampire. If you always end up being anxious and depressed after an interaction with a certain person, then something is probably wrong. Take a closer look at your relationships to address the situation.
5. Drama queens
Drama queens are experts at creating problems out thin air. Their life resembles an emotional rollercoaster and they’re willing to take you on the ride with them. However, these people drain your energy and you may notice that you’re tip-toeing around them so you don’t cause any problem.
Drama queens drag you into their dramas and make you feel like it’s your responsibility to help them deal with all their problems. And if you fail to meet their expectations, they call you a bad friend and manipulate you into feeling worthless.
6. Armchair critics
Some people can be too opinionated and able to find flaws in everything. Getting some feedback might be beneficial in some situations but only if the person who gives it actually understands something about the topic. Armchair critics can speculate on different subjects for ages, but are unlikely to have any real experience with them.
Armchair critics can undermine your confidence by giving unsolicited advice and providing feedback that isn’t really worth considering. And if it’s your close friend or family member, it might be difficult to not take it personally.
7. Control freaks
Dealing with controlling people can be quite a challenge. They usually obsess over small things and dictate to others how they should behave. Control freaks always know better than you and you’re left with no choice: either follow their directions or deal with their emotional outburst.
Controlling people can kill your confidence by saying how you should feel and how you should behave. They don’t provide enough space for you to express your individuality and make your own decisions without getting their approval first.
Manipulators know what they want and they don’t mind ignoring your interests to get it. They can be very charismatic and people love them. However, if you take a closer look, you’ll notice that they rarely make close friends and are not good at long-term relationships.
Manipulators twist everything you say to their benefit and will probably make you sound like you’re crazy if you confront them about it. Try to stay in touch with your real feelings to know when you’re being manipulated and dragged into situations you don’t want to be in.
Some people want to prove that they’re the smartest ones in the room and they take every opportunity to prove how smart they are by letting people know that they’re already aware of the information they’re sharing with them. They aren’t open to new ideas and easily become argumentative with friends.
Know-it-alls can make you feel like you’ve got nothing interesting to say and all your knowledge and wisdom is nothing in comparison with their broad experience. You can try to ignore this behavior, but if you notice that it’s hurting you, it’s probably time to let go of these people.
Cynics can bring too much negativity into your life. While, in recent years, many movies portray these people as appealing and the ones who truly understand the very essence of life, romanticizing them can be detrimental to your psychological stability. Cynics can drive you crazy with their inability to find a silver lining, be supportive, or just be happy for you.
Cynics tend to undermine your confidence, making you feel like your achievements mean nothing and expect you behave in a certain way. Cynics easily feel rejected and insecure, but it’s not your job to fix their psychological traumas, so sometimes relationships with these people aren’t meant to last.
While communication is the key to any successful relationship, stonewallers are likely to disagree. They prefer to use the passive-aggressive form of communication and keep silent if any argument arises. These people can’t manage their anger in a healthy and mature way and “punish” their partner or friends if they experience any discomfort.
Stonewalling often considered emotional abuse. They drag the other people, who may be willing to resolve the conflict peacefully, into a situation where they don’t know how to deal with the problem anymore and feel useless.
Have you ever had to deal with the types of people described in this article? How did you manage to handle the situation? We’d love to hear about your personal experience in the comments.
Illustrated by Alena Tsarkova for BrightSide.me