Should You Be Friends With Her?

Girls' Life magazine|December 2019/January 2020

Should You Be Friends With Her?
Nobody’s perfect. And sometimes, a friend’s flaws actually can be a *good* thing. Seriously.
Kara Wahlgren

This year, you’re vowing that all your friendships will be positive, easy and drama-free. Because that’s the way it should be, right? A good friend doesn’t stir things up and is 100 percent reliable. Right? Well, actually...not necessarily.

The fact is, some seemingly less-than-stellar qualities can be not so bad after all. The trick is learning to tell the difference between a toxic friend and one who’s a righteous addition to your scene. Here’s how to weed out the bad seeds before they become poisonous pals.

THE CRITIC

If she’s not feeling your new cut, she’ll tell it like it is. This friend is straightforward and outspoken. If you’ve been cranky lately, she’ll call you on it. Her brutal honesty can sting—but it also can save the day. After all, this is not a girl who’ll let you walk around all day with spinach in your teeth. She’ll talk you out of buying that chartreuse sweater that washes you out or clue you in if bae is a player. She speaks from the heart—even when it hurts.

MAKE IT WORK Turn to her when you need an honest opinion. Choosing a first-date outfit? Snap her. Need an ego boost? Call, um, anybody but her. As long as you don’t have unrealistic expectations, it’ll be easier to appreciate how rock solid and reliable she really can be.

WHEN TO BAIL If she’s constantly critiquing everything, all the time, reassess the sitch. Insulting you in front of the crew isn’t constructive criticism— it’s cruelty. A thoughtful friend can still serve it up straight without going on the attack.

THE DRAMA QUEEN

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December 2019/January 2020