How to Deal with Toxic People

Toxic people are all around us. They may look like us. They may dress like us, but they are nothing like us. They are toxic. We’ve all come across one at one time or another and dealing with them can be a bitch, (sometimes, literally).

What is a toxic person, exactly?

No, they aren’t harboring the “T Virus”, (Resident Evil reference). However, their behavior towards you is TOXIC. Generically speaking – they are bullies. Frankly speaking – they are assholes. They bring the people around them down and are a black hole of bad vibes. They feel the need to be ‘top dog’ and will berate people around them to hold onto that illusion.

Signs of a Toxic Person:

  • You have a fear or uneasiness about being around them. (Not in a physical way – that’s an entirely different animal).
  • They love drama, especially creating it but they will thrive off of any drama in their general vicinity.
  • You feel exhausted after having been around them – even if the encounter was brief.
  • Most of the time (aside from drama), it’s all about them.
  • They talk a lot of shit about people close to them when said people aren’t around to defend themselves. (Drama – *eye roll*)
  • They are extremely negative.
  • They are critical of you – even downright rude at times.
  • The victim card is one they play often.
  • “Wrong” isn’t in their vocabulary. They will argue with you for eternity rather than admit they’re wrong.
  • Overall – they treat other people like crap. They think they are king/queen of the castle and everyone around them are mere peasants.
  • They give off the undisputed “BAD VIBE”.

Dealing with a Toxic Person:

First off, anyone who makes you feel bad about yourself consistently – should NEVER be a person that you keep in your life. Life is way too damn short.

However, in certain situations, we have no choice but to deal with them: work, family members, members of significant other’s family, friends of friends and so on – you get my drift. It’s inevitable that all of us will have to deal with one of this blubbering assholes, so it’s best to know how to deal with them.

1. Let them know you don’t want an invite to their pity party. 

Toxic people LOVE to complain. A lot of their conversations are centered around wallowing in grief. Eh, don’t partake. If this is a person that is undoubtedly going to be part of your life – let them know, specifically, that you’re not there to hear them complain. Sure, we all have to unload at times. It’s natural. However, toxic people make a habit of doing nothing but whining.

2. Stand up to the bullies.

Toxic people are usually bullies. And, it’s a well known fact that bullies are usually also cowards. They want to knock you down a peg so they feel higher. Don’t deal with their bullshit! I once had this smug lawyer, mock me for being a freelance writer. I didn’t say anything back and I regret it. He wanted me to feel bad about myself for doing something I love and I shouldn’t have tolerated it. I’m sure on the inside, he hates himself and I should’ve launched a witty comeback. In my experience, bullies will back down quickly – as they are cowards. (Refrain from physical violence please. Words leave a more lasting burn & will let a bully know you aren’t to be f*cked with).

3. Don’t accept their ‘false acts of kindness’.

Toxic people may, on occasion, (usually for personal gain), do something for you. They’ll remind you of it COUNTLESS times. It’s a false kindness. They are doing it for their own gain, something to hold over your head in the future. If a toxic person offers you something – don’t take it. It’s not worth it! With toxic people, any act of kindness will have a price attached to it.

4. Establish Clear Boundaries

No, you can’t just show up to my house whenever the hell you want. No, you can’t call me three times a day. NO – you can’t *insert clear boundary*. Toxic people are also usually narcissists and don’t understand healthy boundaries. They’ll butt into your relationship, into your home and into your conversations. They’ll ask inappropriate questions. Make it clear what is and what is not acceptable! Draw a clear line and, if they cross it – cut them out.

5. Do NOT trust them with any sensitive information.

*Yells that once again for anyone who didn’t hear it*: DO NOT TRUST TOXIC PEOPLE WITH SENSITIVE INFORMATION. Again, toxic people love drama. If you’re going through something you don’t want everyone to know about – don’t tell it to a known gossiper, AKA a toxic person. Toxic people will thrive off of your misfortune.

I know someone in particular whom I like to refer to as “The Grim Reaper”. If someone he knows experiences a family tragedy, he calls everyone he knows to let them know – and to add his 2 cents about how he’s “helping out”.

6. Sometimes, you just have to do a “Walk out”.

Some people won’t understand how toxic they are, no matter how eloquently you word it or how thoughtful you are about it. If a toxic person insults you – sure, have a good comeback, but don’t waste your good vibes arguing with them. Rise above that shit.

A good way to look at it: You know about internet trolls, right? Anonymous people online who break balls just to break balls? Well – a toxic person is the living, breathing equivalent of that. And what do we say to internet trolls – NOT TODAY.

DO NOT ENGAGE THE TROLLS! Seriously – toxic people feed on negativity – bad vibes. Never let anyone, ever, steal your joy or good vibes.

Don’t let a toxic person ruin your “good vibes”.

In closing, you will encounter at least one toxic person. Know how to set boundaries with them, how to say no to them and how to cut them out of your life if it comes down to it. Life is too short to be around toxicity. A toxic person can have a negative effect on your life. You don’t need that.


Do you have a “toxic person encounter” story? Let me know in the comments.

Keep the good vibes flowing 🙂


Krissy October is a professional freelance writer, aspiring novelist and knowledge nerd who is dedicated to consistent self-improvement and finding clever ways to solve everyday problems.

1 Comment

  1. Thank you for your blog article.Really looking forward to read more. Will read on…

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