When your best friend dates someone toxic, it puts a strain on your relationship. You want to be blunt with her because you have never lied to each other before. You have always given each other the honest truth, even when it sounded harsh. But you know how protective people can get over their relationships. You know badmouthing him could lead to an argument. You know she might hear your complaints about him and assume you are jealous, you are dramatic, you are out of your mind.
When your best friend dates someone toxic, you feel like every move you make is the wrong one. If you speak up about how she needs to end the relationship, she gets mad at you. If you keep your mouth shut in order to avoid an argument, you feel like you are encouraging her bad behavior. All you want is for her to be okay, for her to be happy — but whenever you criticize her relationship, she assumes you are trying to make her miserable.
When your best friend dates someone toxic, you watch her slip away. You can tell she is keeping secrets from you. You can tell she is not giving you the entire truth when she talks about her relationship. She is hiding arguments with her boyfriend because she doesn’t want you to think poorly of him, she doesn’t want you to brag about being right, she doesn’t want you to encourage her to break up with him. Even though you used to share everything, she is suddenly picking and choosing what you get to hear. She is keeping her darkest moments to herself.
When your best friend dates someone toxic, you see her less and less over time. She cancels plans. She avoids answering texts. She has excuses about why she has been so distant, but none of them add up. You have a hunch her boyfriend is controlling when she is allowed to leave the house and who she is allowed to see — or that, at the very least, he is putting lies in her head about how you are not worthy of her friendship. Either way, it’s his fault you are growing apart. And you hate him for it.
When your best friend dates someone toxic, you desperately want to help her. You want to shake sense into her. You want her to realize she deserves so much better but you cannot figure out which words will convince her. You will eventually reach a point where you realize you can offer her a couch to sleep on or a shoulder to cry on, but you cannot change her mind about loving him. You cannot convince her to leave, even though leaving is the obvious choice from where you are standing.
When your best friend dates someone toxic, you lose them for at least a little while. Sometimes, they will save themselves and find their way back to you. But sometimes, there is nothing you can do except accept their choice.
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