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Coping from being called toxic and manipulative

T

Trying3

Member
Joined
Jan 31, 2021
Messages
7
Location
Florida
I am struggling from losing a friend recently to my mental health. I have to see this person every day at work. We also have mutual friends and while they try to balance their time between us, it's more natural for them to spend time with her. Short backstory:

I struggled with anxiety and depression since junior year of high school. It seemed to come on after I suffered a bad concussion from falling off my bike. Since then, I've been to multiple therapists and on many different medications. To most people, I'm a funny/go with the flow/kind and caring person. Despite my struggles, I've managed to succeed academically and enjoy a solid career. However,I have a dark side. One that is very sad, lonely, self defeating. I am extremely critical of myself and call my brain my worst enemy. I have been hospitalized for my depression and anxiety in the past and very recently had a mental breakdown that caused me to be out of work for about a month and a half.

During this last breakdown and filling out the FMLA paperwork with my doctor, I was told I have a diagnosis and have been diagnosed for the past 4 years. I said I thought I just get depressed sometimes. And my doctor explained I have a diagnosis of major depressive disorder - moderate to severe - with psychotic features, and that i also have anxiety. It wasn't until this past breakdown that I realized how sick I was and how it important it is for me to take my mental health seriously, not something i did before.

Prior to my breakdown though I was struggling with the anxiety of covid and the fear of bringing covid home to my older parents. I work in a profession that requires me to be with the public, primarily low income and incarcerated.

I became best friends with a coworker and I told her I didn't want to tell her my mental health stuff and to just accept when I said I was fine. But as time progressed, she pushed and pushed me to talk. So I did. I opened up. And when things got too dark and I was struggling to acknowledge reality from fiction, she walked away from me.

I tried to reach out numerous times to talk. But she turned me down every time. When I came back to work after being gone for over a month, she wouldn't even look at me, let alone acknowledge me. I have changed medications, been going to therapy weekly and am in a 12 week DBT class, but she doesn't want to hear any of that. She did allow me to talk one day recently and she told me "there's a lot of water under the bridge". I didn't know what this meant and google didn't help. I started to fill in the blanks and make myself upset, so I went back the next day to ask what that phrase meant. She said it meant baggage. And that we can be kind to each other in the office, but she can't be friends. She refused to speak about the future, but said for now we can't be friends.

The conversation actually brought me peace. Until a mutual friend of ours told me that she was annoyed I talked to her and that she truly didn't understand what i was going through and that she wants nothing to do with me. ..this deflated me even more. I thought our conversation went well only to find out she went behind my back to complain about me.

Last week,out of nowhere, a coworker i am not close with came in and started asking if I am ok and that she doesn't see me socializing anymore. I quickly realized she was fishing for information on why me and my best friend don't speak any more. I kept the conversation about me and didn't say anything about my friend. But the whole experience stung. And as the day progressed, I became more upset and resentful towards my friend. I hated that I was getting cornered asking if I'm ok and why I am not socializing, when it wasn't my choice to be cut out. My friend chose to cut me out. Not me.

So i went to my friends office originally to give her a heads up that our coworker is fishing. But instead of being calm, i became upset. And it turned into an argument. And my friend was cold towards me. And refused to acknowledge she had cut me out. She said I was toxic and manipulative. Which stung, because I constantly fear I am those things,so to hear it from her was painful.

However, one of the things I learned was that she thought the conversation last week had gone well. When I explained I thought it had too until I was told differently, she seemed surprised. I explained I was in there today because I was fed up from the week before and now being confronted by someone i didnt appreciate being confronted by. And that i hate being watched. She insisted she was treating me no differently than any other worker. And laid the line we are not friends. We only work together.

I'm trying to manage this. Where the person who used to care and pushed me to open up now finds me toxic and manipulative.

I don't know how to cope in an environment where I have to see her daily and that I am consistently excluded from our friend group.
Now that I know how sick I am and am doing the things I need to take my health seriously, she has cut me out and makes every day an emotional obstacle course.

Have other people had this experience? Does it get any better? Does the friendship ever come back? Or is this just my life now?
 
Z

Zoe1

Well-known member
Joined
Jul 8, 2019
Messages
17,592
Location
Nowhere
hi Trying :welcome: to your forum

I've had a lot of this in the mental health services
either I've got too much for someone or they were too much for me .
basically what I see now is that alot of service users
are not getting the services they need to get well
especially in the talking therapies

so a lot of my friendships have not worked out becaeu of this.
and I'm now doing the peer mentorship course
hoping to learn more about how things work between peers
and it seems basically I don't have proper boundaries to begin with
I offer the person too much that I can't sustain

hope that helps


:grouphug:
 
T

Trying3

Member
Joined
Jan 31, 2021
Messages
7
Location
Florida
hi Trying :welcome: to your forum

I've had a lot of this in the mental health services
either I've got too much for someone or they were too much for me .
basically what I see now is that alot of service users
are not getting the services they need to get well
especially in the talking therapies

so a lot of my friendships have not worked out becaeu of this.
and I'm now doing the peer mentorship course
hoping to learn more about how things work between peers
and it seems basically I don't have proper boundaries to begin with
I offer the person too much that I can't sustain

hope that helps


:grouphug:
Thank you! It does help. And I'm finding the DBT group to be very helpful, eventhough it's more of a class and not a support group. But I finally hear others saying the same things I have been saying and struggling with. It's comforting. But also makes me sad that my friend can't support me through this time. Being called toxic and manipulative is extremely painful. But I won't give up trying to be better
 
Z

Zoe1

Well-known member
Joined
Jul 8, 2019
Messages
17,592
Location
Nowhere
k so your mentally ill friend calls you toxic and manipulative
that doesn't mean its true though
if you check it out with other people
you might find its ' her stuff '

im constantly having to work on ' my stuff '
so I don't take it out on other people
 
S

shantikhan

Member
Joined
Jan 31, 2021
Messages
16
Location
sheffield
i have never been in this situation, so i cannot understand fully. although maybe you should not seek validation from these people, just try to be at peace with them if you want to stay calm in your job. focus on your job. I am no professional, but if you really think you have these issues which has made her feel this way, then try to look at them within yourself. maybe she wanted a friend and you told her too much which is out of her understanding capacity , which she cannot handle. i have had this situation before. or maybe she is the work gossip? either way. you cannnot contrrol others only yoyurself . try to be kind to yourself and your issues through out this. if you come out the bettter person, then these people will not mattter. am not saying it easy, if you know you have a dark side, maybe you need to explore that. this is defenatly what i am am doing now, this one is deffo not easy but, has very much insight to the friendships i have and have had in my life. (i am not a preacher or never wil be). I hope you peace and love what ever you are working with. i would love to slag her offf with you and try and justify her way, but everything lies with us.. take care and lots of love too you. keep working and being a good personxxxx
 
T

Trying3

Member
Joined
Jan 31, 2021
Messages
7
Location
Florida
True. Just because she says it doesn't make it true. Im just extremely sensitive and critical of myself. So I want to fix the things people see in me, even if she is the only one saying it. Also, she isn't mentally ill. I'm the mentally ill one.
 
T

Trying3

Member
Joined
Jan 31, 2021
Messages
7
Location
Florida
i have never been in this situation, so i cannot understand fully. although maybe you should not seek validation from these people, just try to be at peace with them if you want to stay calm in your job. focus on your job. I am no professional, but if you really think you have these issues which has made her feel this way, then try to look at them within yourself. maybe she wanted a friend and you told her too much which is out of her understanding capacity , which she cannot handle. i have had this situation before. or maybe she is the work gossip? either way. you cannnot contrrol others only yoyurself . try to be kind to yourself and your issues through out this. if you come out the bettter person, then these people will not mattter. am not saying it easy, if you know you have a dark side, maybe you need to explore that. this is defenatly what i am am doing now, this one is deffo not easy but, has very much insight to the friendships i have and have had in my life. (i am not a preacher or never wil be). I hope you peace and love what ever you are working with. i would love to slag her offf with you and try and justify her way, but everything lies with us.. take care and lots of love too you. keep working and being a good personxxxx
Thank you! I appreciate your insight.
 
Z

Zoe1

Well-known member
Joined
Jul 8, 2019
Messages
17,592
Location
Nowhere
k well six of one and half a dozen of the other really
because people who are not mentally ill
can be extremely ignorant

so in the end we end up with nobody isn't it
it takes me years to build a friendship
 
HDawg

HDawg

Member
Joined
Sep 3, 2013
Messages
5
Location
Manchester UK
k well six of one and half a dozen of the other really
because people who are not mentally ill
can be extremely ignorant

so in the end we end up with nobody isn't it
it takes me years to build a friendship
Never a truer word spoken! Aha
 
T

Trying3

Member
Joined
Jan 31, 2021
Messages
7
Location
Florida
I learned today my friend filed an HR complaint against me. She insists she has treated me no differently, even though she ignores my existence and has made the work environment toxic. Then today im talked to by my boss that Im making my coworker uncomfortable. Basically given a cease and desist or very bad things will happen. My attempts at trying to make my work environment peaceful has now escalated to an HR complaint. My boss said she doesn't know the other's agenda, but i have to be careful. It's likely i will quit.
 
S

shantikhan

Member
Joined
Jan 31, 2021
Messages
16
Location
sheffield
Dont quit, just hold your head up high, if you know you have nothing to loose. N if you are aprt of it, weather direct or indirecrly, learn from it n dont make the same mistakes again. We have one lifexxx
 
anex

anex

Well-known member
Joined
Oct 1, 2020
Messages
309
Location
USA
That was not right of her to push you to open up after you kept saying no. Highly inappropriate. That is NOT okay. And then when you told her, she behaves like that? THAT is manipulative. Absolutely messed up. I’m sorry you’re going through this. Is that something you can bring up to HR if you haven’t already?
 

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