When Cutting People Off Becomes Toxic

So, I went into detail about why I let people go. For most, the act of cutting people off emerges from a place of self-care. We realize we are being mistreated, and we seek to remedy the problem.

However, just like with anything, there’s a wrong way to go about it. Instead of cutting ties with toxic people, YOU become the toxic person needlessly burning bridges.

Let’s walk through a few ways this can happen.

When You’re Not Honest With Yourself

Be honest. Did your boyfriend really treat you as badly as you claim he did, or were you exaggerating a little? Did you eject that long-time friend from your life because they did something wrong? Or was it because you didn’t properly communicate your expectations?

Something I’ve been guilty of is expecting people to know what I want from them. I’d get frustrated because I’d think “Why is it so hard for them? I don’t expect much anyway!”

So, when they’d make a misstep like forgetting my birthday, blowing me off to hang with other people, etc, I’d just nix the friendship without communicating with them. Then, they’d be confused and hurt, and we’d both end up with unresolved issues. Nothing would get solved.

Turns out people can’t read your minds, and you can’t read theirs. They also can’t be held accountable for things you never properly address.

When You Simply Isolate From Everyone

Sometimes we think we’re punishing others by removing ourselves from their lives. We think to ourselves “This’ll show them!” as we deactivate all of our social media accounts and refuse to answer anyone’s texts.

Then, inevitably, we realize this solves little and wind up returning to our circle with our tail between our legs. We don’t punish anyone but ourselves.

Isolating from others does more harm than good in nearly any situation to begin with. If you feel neglected by others, it’s better to communicate with them as to why.

When You Recruit People to be Spiteful

You’ve decided to bestow your boyfriend with the ex qualifier now. You’re officially done with him for life, but that’s not enough! Now you have to get your friends, family, and pets to disown him as well.

You decide your best friend has disrespected you one-too-many times, so you break free. Except now you want the rest of the circle to leave them out as well. So, all of you regularly go out without including them.

Now imagine yourself in the other person’s shoes. Would you like it if an entire group suddenly shunned you and left you out? And we’re talking about for minor offenses like forgetting birthdays, not cheating or trash talking. Does it really warrant all that?

Now, I’m not saying you shouldn’t have boundaries. It’s okay to express to people that you need your space. What’s not okay is banding a troop together to slander and tarnish someone because of a bad breakup, relationship or otherwise.

It Starts With a Sense of Self

Cutting people off shouldn’t always be the answer.

The above scenarios happen usually because we need to work on our communication skills. We struggle to express our feelings sometimes because we feel we can’t stand up for ourselves.

This often stems from low self-worth or self-esteem in the individual. That sounds a little drastic, right? Except, it’s not! Improving your self-worth is relatively easy and something I recommend to most people who struggle with communication. Check out my book, Life After Low Self-Esteem, for more details.

And remember. Cut people out when it’s appropriate, not because you’re afraid to express yourself.

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