Toxic People, We All Know One
Toxic people - we all know one. They suck the energy right out of your body like an unwelcome vampire, clinging on until you either give up or degrade to their level.
Since moving to Hong Kong, I've met a lot of endlessly kind people with aspirational qualities. But where there is loveliness, there is shit. Sometimes, the shit is wrapped beautifully, but you know it's just a box of shit.
Not wanting to dwell too much on negativity, but hoping that my efforts will help someone out there, I've carefully dissected the inner workings of the toxic person. If one person, and I mean one person, is able to benefit from this list, then my suffering will all be worth it.
Jokes aside, toxic people are everywhere. They lurk in our coffee shops, our chilled out music venues, and our offices or even homes - wait don't turn around! I think there's someone behind you ready to give you the stink eye. Please note that this is not about or an attack on anyone; just some observations based on my own experiences and other people's accounts.
So like that tick you can feel on your body but can't seem to find, I've come to the rescue to rip that shit off for you. Identify these people in your life, and get rid of them by any means necessary: politely decline invitations, do you engage in prolong conversation, or outright screen. You know the drill.
What you wear, what you eat, what you say & how you say it - the judge never rests. This person will make snap judgements about you even before meeting you. All they need is a public Instagram account, and they can concoct a full length novel about your life.
This person will...assume you're from a certain place based on your accent or appearance.
The Master Manipulator
Reverse psychology, gross exaggerations, throwing out ultimatums, straight-up lying. The manipulator will say anything to get their way. They gossip like there's no tomorrow, and they act differently around every person they're with. They don't stop until everyone is confused, and led to believe their deceptions.
This person will...act differently with everyone they meet.
The Attention Seeker
No matter where the conversation is going, this person is going to make it about them, but will try to play it off cool. "I want to get my sister a wallet for Christmas." "I just got his wallet last month before the sales, and people compliment me so much. I think it's sold out though."
This person will...stop everyone at a dinner party to tell them a story about themselves that has nothing to do with the existing conversation.
This person will victimise themselves at every opportunity, pointing the finger of blame at everyone but themselves. Job interview didn't go well? This person will probably blame it on the person who bumped into them on the MTR that day. And don't expect this person to ever apologise for anything, ever. To this person, everyone else is out to get them, life isn't fair, "I have Daddy issues", etc.
This person will...tell all their friends about how badly their ex treated them even though they broke up 5 years ago.
The Greed Monster
There's no other way it - this person is fucking greedy. They want it for themselves, even if they don't care what "it" is. The only difference is that you have it, which by definition is something they want. Your girlfriend, your job, your taste in music. And if they can't get it, then they'll probably whine about it (see above).
This person will...borrow money from you and make you feel awkward for asking for it back.
To this person, gossiping is a serious sport. This person doesn't talk about anything of substance and when they gossip, it isn't always so harmless. Most of the time, they're gossip to prove a point, elevate themselves, or spread false rumors to degrade other people. They want to hurt you because, well, they're extremely insecure about themselves and that's the only way they know how to deal with it.
This person will...tell you who broke up with who, who left their job, who got an unsightly rash - all within 5 minutes of speaking with you.
This person is always silent when someone else is praised for an accomplishment for complimented for their talents. They're never happy for what they have, where the grass isn't only greener on the other side, they'll burn down your lawn if necessary just to stop the pangs of envy. Most of all, this person is jealous of other people's happiness. They get especially territorial for people, so prepare for Stage 5 clinging if they see you getting close to someone important to them.
This person will...bitch about people who are too materialistic when their entire outfit screams the opposite.
The Arrogant Bastard
Don't worry guys, the arrogant bastard will take care of this, even though they don't know what the fuck is going on. But this person knows everything, is the most gorgeous, intelligent, savvy, etc. They'll try to take control of every situation thinking that they're capable when it's not always the case. This person may be very smart, but their flaw is a toxic personality.
This person will...tell you how much money they spent on a recent holiday. SO MUCH.
The No Character Character
There's not much else to this person other than the fact they're toxic. They fuel themselves up on negativity, and only care about getting their way even if it means hurting other people in the process. Maybe they've been hurt in the past, maybe they feel scorned by the world, the fact is - they're out to get you and you don't know why.
This person will...be a fucking asshole.
After all that's been said, I do want to note that I think toxic people deserve compassion, or rather, they need compassion the most. Why are these people toxic? It's a combination of crippling insecurity due to having been treated badly in the past in one way or another.
The best way, in my opinion, to show compassion to these people is to nicely cut them out of your life and move on. In time, they'll realise their wrongdoings and hopefully change for the better on their own.