The Difference Between A Brutally Honest Friend And A Toxic Friend
Nesrin Danan

The Difference Between A Brutally Honest Friend And A Toxic Friend

“A toxic ‘friend’ takes obvious pleasure in shocking you with information they know will hurt. An honest friend directly tells you what you need to know, even if it’s not what you wish to hear.” — Back2Bach

“Are they ‘brutally honest’ with you in public? Pointing out your flaws in front of others as if they’re trying to embarrass you? Toxic. Are they pontificating about your ‘flaws’ almost as if they were saying ‘being you? wrong, be more like me?’ Disregarding the intricacies and differences of both of your personalities? Toxic. Do they say mean shit about their friends with you? They say mean shit about you behind your back.” — [deleted]

“Is their honestly meant to build you up or tear you down? Are they someone who is willing to also tell you good things about yourself, which is also honesty, or do they only focus on the negative? Do they take responsibility if they cross the line, or do they not care and insist that you are being too insensitive? Because if it’s any of the latter, then they are a toxic person. In the end, if you really have to ask, then you probably know the answer already.” — Funandgeeky

“A non-toxic friend will respond to critical feedback that their ‘brutal’ honesty is not welcome, and they will tone it down accordingly. A toxic friend will completely ignore such feedback, or worse may even step-up their behavior out of spite.” — CalibanDrive

“The brutally-honest friend won’t always be being brutally-honest. You’ll have great times, laughs, and the occasional moment of brutal honesty. The toxic friends will always be toxic. Constant complaints, or comparisons. Twisting words or steering the conversation towards negativity, or being the center of attention. If you can’t remember the last time you just ‘had fun’ together, they’re a toxic friend.” — ninjakaji

“I think ‘brutal honesty’ is more often an excuse on the part of the friend to justify a lack of tact. ‘Don’t blame me, I’m just being brutally honest.’ A good friend – or even just a reasonable human being – should generally be able to be honest and direct without being brutal. They might not (and often shouldn’t) beat around the bush, but should realize that there’s room for tact and grace, even (especially) when they’re saying something their friend may not like. So if someone would rather be ‘brutally honest’ than tactfully honest and direct, they probably are already toxic. Exceptions apply, of course. But the only one of can think of is when tactful honesty has been tried and failed.” — roastism

“Brutally honest is meant for your own betterment. Criticism, while harsh, is meant to get you in line and make the appropriate changes because they care about you, and being nice hasn’t worked. Toxicity is flat out not caring about you, any criticism isn’t meant to better yourself, it’s meant to better themselves in either wanting the changes that advance their own agenda or they revel in simply making others feel bad about themselves.” — llcucf80

“A brutally honest friend will tell you the bad, but they’ll also tell you the good. A toxic friend will only point out the bad, usually to make them feel better.” — K666busa