How to understand that you are being used: 7 alarming signs

By Jurassic JennMay 12, 2024 16:31 PMPsychology
Share:
How to understand that you are being used
How to understand that you are being used. Source: www.marriage.com

Sometimes we find ourselves in relationships where we feel uncomfortable, but we can't understand what's happening. It's easier for us to deny reality and tell ourselves that it's just our insecurities. After all, it's hard to accept that those we trust and consider close friends are only pretending to care about us because they actually need something from us.

For SSPDaily, psychotherapist Ilya Poludyonyi told us how to understand if you are in a relationship or friendship with a user.

Everything seems fine at first

Such cases often happen at work. A so-called friendship arises, and before you know it, you're doing a project for your new friend at night because they have some kind of relationship trauma and can't get their work done. And you, being a friend, help them out. But once the project is done, your friendship disappears, and you find yourself alone, questioning what's wrong with you. Let's get one thing straight – there's nothing wrong with you. You just fell into the trap of a user who takes advantage of people to make their lives easier.

Minimal signs of attention

Yes, they show some signs of attention from time to time, but usually, these are insignificant gestures that cost them nothing. For instance, they might give you a pebble from the beach, accompanied by a romantic story. They do this so that you can't refuse any of their requests later on. Be prepared to pay back with emotional service, your time, and energy.

They only notice you when they need to

You spend time with this person only when it suits them. It's normal for them not to respond to your messages, keep in touch, or make time for you when you need it. But sometimes they contact you or show interest only when they're bored or need your help. As soon as they no longer need anything, they disappear without any remorse. And if you have a problem, the most you'll hear is, "You're such a good person! You can handle everything."

If you notice this pattern, it's better to steer clear of such a friendship: you won't gain anything from it, only lose.

They know almost nothing about you

Let's be honest – they simply don't care to know. Even though you've been friends or in a relationship for a long time, they might constantly forget your birthday or important milestones in your life. This indicates that they aren't genuinely interested in getting to know you. They're only concerned with themselves and how they can benefit from being friends or being in a relationship with you.

They don't respect your boundaries

They unload all their problems on you and constantly ask you to do things for them, even when you're busy or unwilling. They use you as a dumping ground for their negative emotions. Perhaps they invite you for coffee out of the blue and then proceed to vent about all the negativity in their life. And when you suggest they see a therapist, they dismiss it, saying it won't help. Why spend money when you have "friends"?

They might borrow your belongings and not return them, or return them in a dirty state. They might ask to borrow money and forget to pay you back. These are all red flags that indicate they don't respect your boundaries and are taking advantage of your kindness.

A one-way street

You're always the one to reach out to them, initiate meetings, maintain the relationship, and adjust your plans according to their wishes. Congratulations, it's a one-sided affair. Because what does the other person do? Nothing! They don't reciprocate your efforts or express gratitude for your attention because they're content with the status quo.

You foot the bill

You go out for coffee or to the movies, and your "friend" or "partner" forgets their wallet – no problem, it's not a big deal for you to cover their expenses. You want to believe that they're just forgetful, and you're happy to assist them. But then the situation repeats itself, and it becomes a pattern. You feel uneasy, but you can't help it because you don't want to lose the friendship.

Maybe it's time to face the truth: this person is using you for your money.

What should you do?

Normally, human relationships involve interaction and mutual support. However, assistance should be voluntary, provided you have the opportunity, resources, and feel comfortable in the situation. Discomfort is a sign that you're being used. In such cases, it's crucial to trust yourself and your feelings.

Often, this stems from blurred personal boundaries. Everyone has their own red line – the point after which tension begins to build. For some people, these boundaries are clearer and stronger, and they can calmly express their discomfort. But for others, especially those who grew up in an environment where boundaries weren't respected, it may seem that others' needs are more important. Such individuals find it challenging to say "no" or set limits; they tolerate exploitation for a long time, and others take advantage of it. While such a person might eventually reach their breaking point, it will likely be much later, and they will suffer longer. This is undoubtedly an issue best addressed with a psychotherapist because it can be quite traumatic.

There are two ways out of such situations: you can view them as an opportunity for personal growth. Instead of avoiding them, express what you dislike or find strange. Treat it like an experiment to make it easier on yourself. Imagine it's a game – what if you enjoy it?

The second, more common option is to avoid it and pretend everything is fine.

Unfortunately, there are no other alternatives. Yes, it's not easy, but it's a chance to establish your boundaries so that you don't find yourself in similar ambiguous situations in the future.

Here's a little tip: when you sense some manipulation in a request, don't agree right away. Say you need time to think it over, consult with friends and family. This will give you space to understand the situation and make an informed decision.

Also, if you're afraid to say "no" because you worry about losing a friend or partner, consider whether you need someone who won't support you when you need it.

Remember, if you feel like your loved ones are manipulating you, making you feel guilty, or devaluing you, you're not imagining things. It might be happening. To verify it, pay attention to simple phrases that indicate signs of manipulation and control by the people you're interacting with.

Top Articles
Remain cautious in decision-making: Chinese horoscope for June 14

Remain cautious in decision-making: Chinese horoscope for June 14

Jun 14, 2024 18:52 PM
The spiritual significance of the white butterfly

What is the meaning of meeting a white butterfly? Mystical and spiritual meaning for success in love, career and better health

Jun 12, 2024 15:23 PM

What is the meaning of itchy left foot? Spiritual meaning and what it can bring to your life

Jun 12, 2024 14:53 PM

What is the meaning of the bird that crashed into the window? Spiritual meanings of the event and the symbolism of the winged ones

Jun 12, 2024 13:37 PM
More News
Representatives of three zodiac signs may experience sudden fame in near future

Representatives of three zodiac signs may experience sudden fame in near future

Jun 14, 2024 22:15 PM
Representatives of three zodiac signs can expect financial windfall

Representatives of three zodiac signs can expect financial windfall

Jun 14, 2024 21:57 PM

Blue smoke coming from the car: causes and solutions

Jun 14, 2024 21:39 PM

Representatives of three zodiac signs may suddenly relocate and change environment

Jun 14, 2024 21:32 PM
Representatives of three zodiac signs will better understand their passions and priorities

Representatives of three zodiac signs will better understand their passions and priorities

Jun 14, 2024 21:08 PM
How to get the most out of eating nuts

How to get the most out of eating nuts: 5 useful tips

Jun 14, 2024 21:03 PM
5 reasons to teach your child to give gifts

Not only to take, but also to give: 5 reasons to teach your child to give gifts

Jun 14, 2024 20:34 PM
Three signs will feel the sense of abundance and gratitude: Chinese horoscope for June 14

Three signs will feel the sense of abundance and gratitude: Chinese horoscope for June 14

Jun 14, 2024 20:14 PM
How to properly care for your cat's coat

6 tips from experts on how to properly care for your cat's coat

Jun 14, 2024 20:05 PM

Opportunities for spiritual growth: Chinese horoscope for June 14

Jun 14, 2024 19:45 PM

How to learn to articulate your thoughts clearly: 4 useful tips

Jun 14, 2024 19:29 PM
Changes in their personal and professional life: Chinese horoscope for June 14

Changes in their personal and professional life: Chinese horoscope for June 14

Jun 14, 2024 19:18 PM
Pros and cons of a duplex apartment

Pros and cons of a duplex apartment: is it worth considering this housing option

Jun 14, 2024 19:03 PM
What to do if your computer won't start

What to do if your computer won't start: useful tips

Jun 14, 2024 18:37 PM
Five zodiac signs may find a fulfilling new hobby to explore this weekend

Five zodiac signs may find a fulfilling new hobby to explore this weekend

Jun 14, 2024 18:26 PM

Should you become a police officer: advantages and disadvantages of this occupation

Jun 14, 2024 18:09 PM

Representatives of three signs might feel interest in learning: horoscope for the second part of the week

Jun 14, 2024 17:56 PM
Three zodiac signs will feel adaptable to change: horoscope for weekend

Three zodiac signs will feel adaptable to change: horoscope for weekend

Jun 14, 2024 17:35 PM
Bass or electric guitar

Bass or electric guitar: what is the difference between them

Jun 14, 2024 17:35 PM
Representatives of the five zodiac signs can expand their social circles and form new connections this weekend

Representatives of the five zodiac signs can expand their social circles and form new connections this weekend

Jun 14, 2024 17:34 PM
Representatives of three zodiac signs will feel an upsurge in confidence: horoscope for second part of the week

Representatives of three zodiac signs will feel an upsurge in confidence: horoscope for second part of the week

Jun 14, 2024 17:09 PM
The best way to work out in the gym

The best way to work out in the gym: with or without a trainer

Jun 14, 2024 17:03 PM

Five zodiac signs will get unexpected news this weekend

Jun 14, 2024 16:39 PM

What is better to use for makeup: foundation or cushion

Jun 14, 2024 16:31 PM
Three zodiac signs will feel a strong pull towards nature: horoscope for the second part of the week

Three zodiac signs will feel a strong pull towards nature: horoscope for the second part of the week

Jun 14, 2024 16:12 PM
Is it worth installing panoramic windows

Is it worth installing panoramic windows: their advantages and disadvantages

Jun 14, 2024 16:00 PM