• Other Friendship Advice

Insecure about my relationship with my best friend

Published: April 26, 2015 | By | 6 Replies Continue Reading
A college student feels insecure about her friendship and wonders whether she is a “toxic” friend.

QUESTION

Hi,

I just finished my first year of college and I made some really close friends but I think I have some friendship anxiety.

I have the most anxiety with one of my closest friends (I consider her my best friend). We only met about 8 months ago again and she has helped me through some tough times. We have become very close and I have never opened to anyone more than her.

But I always feel as though I am annoying her and am too needy, then start second guessing our friendship and get insecure. I also feel really insecure about all her other friends that she has known for years and I wonder how I can compete with them. I know she is a homebody and isn’t the most open person. I feel like I pushed her too far too fast and we are not as good friends as I thought.

Is it possible to become best friends with someone that fast? Is it needy to want to know how she is doing and to spend time with her? I have overthought the situation so much I don’t know anymore. And I just love her so much and don’t want to push her away by being a toxic friend but I think I want more than she can give in our friendship.

Thanks, An insecure friend

ANSWER

Dear Insecure,

Congratulations on finishing your freshman year. Chances are, if you think you’re being too needy with your friend you already are.

Since you say you’re anxious in all your friendships, I wondered if this concern is life-long or it just started in college. If it’s new, what changed between how you feel now and how you felt previously? If this is anxiety has been with you most of your life, or if you feel like it’s interfering with your friendships, your university’s counseling center would be a good place to get some help.

You seem to have some good insight into how your anxiety might be negatively impacting your friendships. Because you’re taking responsibility for your feelings and not blaming others, I’m quite optimistic you can turn this around.

Lots of people find writing and journaling a great outlet. I have some questions for you to think and/or journal about.

  • Why do I have feel like I have to compete with her other friends to be important in her life?
  • What would it mean if I think of her as a best friend and she cares about me, but she has another best friend?
  • What if she doesn’t think in terms of best friend, but just has several close friends?
  • What can I do to pull back my intensity and reassure myself without being demanding that she fix my insecurity?

Good luck figuring things out.

Signed, *Amy Feld


*Amy Feld, PhD, MSW has trained and worked as a child psychologist.

Disclaimer: Nothing in this or any other post is intended to substitute for medical, psychiatric or clinical diagnosis/treatment. Rather, all posts are written as the type of advice that one friend might give to another.

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  1. avish says:

    hlo
    i m in 12th stranded.
    i have a very close friend . i m not open to anyone except him , he is my only friend it was everything right in starting but now i think he is not same with me.
    he dont cares like i do or i am not able to get his way of caring.
    whenever he use to stay sometime with his other friends i feel like he is not happy from me .
    every time i say sorry for any mistake doesn’t matter its from him or me
    all because i respect him nd by doing so now he thinks that i m wrong everytime
    don’t know what’s wrong with me
    plz help

  2. Carol says:

    Hello again insecure. I just found a great article about anxiety by Charlie Kurth on Aeon, a site I have been on for sometime. Great stories by all kinds of people to all kinds of life challenges. Maybe it will be helpful to you. Hope so. Carol

  3. PollyPau says:

    I was moved by the replies here. Relationship anxiety can be crippling. I suffer from this too and even at the age of 42, I cannot say I have completely overcome it.

    But it comes a point in your life when you just let go, in the full sense of the word. You accept that some people are going to be there for you long term, and that others, no matter how close you were once, are going to move on, and move away.

    It’s hard to lose friends, but I’ve realised that sometimes this is an inevitable part of growing up. It doesn’t mean you or them are bad people, or unworthy of love, it means that our lives have taken different turns, and what brought us close once, might not be there for ever.

    Relationship anxiety can also be related to early attachment patterns to our parents and carers. So it is worth exploring with a counsellor, or read books on this.

    I wish you all the best, OP, as other readers have said, you seem to have a lot of insight into what’s causing the problem and that’s the first big step to turn things around.

  4. Lillan says:

    Hi Insecure Friend!

    Thats great that you are looking at yourself and your patterns. Congratulate yourself!☺

    One thing that came to my mind when reading your post is are you needy or do you attract emotionally unavailable people in your world? This can present itself as always wanting “more” from people who don’t offer it. There may be perfectly available friends for you out there if you are open to that.

    Good luck!

  5. Carol says:

    Hi insecure,

    One of my biggest challenges in life has been my “anxiety.” I am way along the journey in life, as I am 76. I guess what I want to share with you is that I never took my anxiousness seriously until recent years. I eventually became a counselor and in doing so learned so much about human behaviors and how anxiety can affect one’s life. Amy is right, seeking some support and help from a counselor or therapist would help you to understand this part of yourself. You can learn to live with anxiety and understand your feelings more clearly. I have a “best friend” and we love and support each other; she’s so much comfort to me. She is married and has grown children. She counts on me to be there for her as well. Anxiety is not, for some of us, an off and on thing. It shows up when I least expect it at times. Learning to know how to calm myself down, think things through and continue to trust my best friend, can be work for me. If I tell her that I am feeling anxious about something between us; she listens and helps to reassure that our friendship is important to her as well. Love yourself enough to understand your anxiety by seeking help through whatever means you can. For many of us it’s a lifelong challenge. I know you want a friend you can depend on. You will learn that you will find answers if you seek help. All of us are simply human beings, learning and growing. Best to you, Carol

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