Are you in a one-sided friendship? Here’s how to find out and what to do about it

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Do you find yourself consistently being the one that puts in all of the effort to maintain a friendship (or conversely, never put any effort into it)? If so, you might be in a one-sided friendship.

If you’re unsure, relationship and friendship expert Dr. Melanie Ross Mills says you need to pay attention to how you feel after interacting with this person. She says “look at how you feel after you meet for coffee or hang up the phone. Are you energized? Are you encouraged? Are you inspired? Or are you feeling a little less than? Are you feeling anxious?”

Overall, does it make you feel exhausted?

So, what do you do with those people?

First and foremost, Dr. Mills says to look at why you’re staying in the friendship. It might involve some hard questions of yourself, like asking if you’re seeking their approval. She says that you need to consider if you’re staying in an unhealthy friendship because you don’t feel worthy to have ‘better’ friends.

Another scenario may be that you find yourself in a group of friends that is gossipy or toxic and you want to move into a circle that is more reciprocal. “So limit your time, it doesn’t mean you’re not friends with them,” she says, “it doesn’t mean you can’t go in and out, but then gravitate towards the ones that are healthy and make an effort.”

At the end of the day, Dr. Mills says that friendships are relationships and sometimes they’re just not a fit.

Visit for more information and advice on relationships.

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