If there’s one thing I’ve learned over all these years living on this planet it’s this: Relationships are hard. Not just your relationship with your family, or your BF/GF, but with your friends too. Anyone who claims that they’ve had nothing but good friendships in their life is lying, because that’s impossible. Friends can come, they can go, they can make us feel bad and they can make us feel wanted at the same time. They can move away and say they’ll stay in touch, but sometimes (okay, often) that doesn’t happen, even in the age of social media. They can be the people we trust the most and the people we wouldn’t trust at all. In other words, friendship: it’s complicated.
But friendships are especially complicated when you feel like you can’t be real with each other. That’s how resentment and insecurity bubbles, and that’s the last thing you want in a relationship with someone who is so important to you. Haven’t we all had a friend (or several) whom we wanted to confess something to, but we were too worried about the consequences? Maybe your friend made you feel like trash but you were too afraid to tell them. Maybe your friend is engaging in some behavior that makes your skin crawl, but you’re too hesitant to say something because they might take it the wrong way. Well, sometimes, those consequences can be worth it. Here are seven things you should always tell your friends, even if it’ll hurt their feelings.
When Your Friend Is Drinking Too Much, Too OftenYeah, yeah, yeah. Nobody wants to play mom at the party; it's a total killjoy and it makes you look like you have a stick up your butt. But your friend might not actually realize how much of an impact their drinking is actually having on them, especially if they're a binge drinker. If this is a pattern that happens, like, all the time...have a talk. If your friend can't drink without needing to get drunk, let them know that that worries you. They probably won't change their behavior overnight, and you shouldn't expect them to. But they might try to be more mindful about it, even if it's just for your sake. Some Girls
When Your Friend Makes You Feel SmallWe all experience having our feelings hurt by a friend every now and then, right? If it's happening regularly with one of your friends, however, you need to take a deep breath and have a conversation with them about it. Otherwise, you're going to keep your feelings locked up and build resentment. I waited way too long to have that conversation with an old friend of mine, and I still regret it. Yes, the "you-did-this-and-it-made-me-feel-bad-TBH" conversation is...terrible. It will make you kind of want to die. But think of it this way: The best case scenario is that this friend didn't realize that they were giving off a negative vibe or hurting your feelings. This talk could really help them change their tune. The Craft
When You Think Someone Is Treating Your Friend BadlyWhether it's a bad boyfriend/girlfriend or a bad home situation, if you witness behavior that you think is abnormal or abusive, try to talk to them about it before anyone else. You shouldn't go into interrogation mode, but you should be honest: "I saw your BF do this to you, and I thought it was out of bounds." Maybe they feel the same way, but don't know how to address it. If they're in denial and act super defensive, give them some space, but don't forget about it. Breach it again another time, and if things seem dire, tell another adult that you trust and ask them for advice. Heathers
When They're Being OffensiveThis is definitely the hardest thing to do, because people obviously take it really personally if you call them a racist, homophobe, Islamophobe, sexist, slut shamer, fat shamer, etc. But you're actually doing your friend a favor but calling them out. You're only doing it because you want them to be a better person! If they're not totally immature, they'll hear you out and try to change. If they're in vehement denial or call you too PC, is this someone you want to actually be friends with? If you're still apprehensive, remember this: You're not the one who should feel embarrassed about this, they are. Daria
When Your Friend Is Being Rude To Other FriendsNobody wants to disrupt the balance of a group of friends, but you're actually being a bad friend if you witness another friend being rude to someone else in your group, but stay silent. Look, you need to call them out. Maybe not in front of everyone (yet), but maybe take them aside and say, "Hey, is everything okay between you and [friend's name]? You were a little harsh earlier." Still don't think it's your place? Well, how would you feel if you were getting picked on and none of your so-called friends stood up for you? Jawbreaker
When You're Worried About Your Friend's BehaviorYou're not a doctor, but you might be able to tell if your friend has been a lot more down lately, or has been more obsessive about food, or has exhibited any behaviors that are a little...off. It can be hard to breach the topic with them, especially if they're a very private person, but just saying, "Hey, I've noticed [whatever] lately and I wanted to check in on you." You never know, reaching out could really help them move in a healthier direction. One of my biggest regrets as a teenager was not noticing that a friend of mine was never eating at lunch; she had to be hospitalized for an eating disorder and left school. Maybe one of our friends noticed something off, but didn't want to make things awkward. Please, don't place awkwardness above safety, ever. My Mad Fat Diary
When They Just Can't Seem To Wear The Right Makeup ShadeYes, I know, this is a lot less dire than some of the other things on this list, but come on...we all have that one friend who just doesn't seem to realize that her makeup is too dark, too light, too orangey, etc. Approach this as you would, say, telling your friend that there's something in their teeth. If you want to be sneaky, just invite them shopping next weekend and play around with different shades of makeup. Find one that you think looks great on them and convince them to get it. If they resist, then maybe be a little more blunt...but keep it sweet. Ru Paul's Drag Race
Have you ever had to confront a friend? What was it about? Did you resolve everything or did it ruin your friendship for good? Tell us in the comments!