The Lowdown Hub

How to spot a user who appears as a friend

Can you tell when a friend is using you? Do you quickly notice when someone is using you indirectly? Sometimes it can be difficult to tell. It hurts to realize that someone you considered a friend is using you and that they are not in any way your real-friends. In situations like these, it's easy to shy away from the truth at first, ignoring the signs and living in a state of denial. The truth is that if you don't stand up to check your friend's behavior, nothing might change. Do you get a sinking feeling that your friend doesn't even really like you that much? Don't feel too bad about it. Some people are actually quite incapable of a real friendship, and they don't know how to do anything else other than using people. If you suspect that one of your friends fits this description you should draw back from them.

Here are five signs that could let you know that your friend is a user:

1. Your friend only calls you when they need something

When you notice that your friend only contacts you when they need something from you, that should be a pointer.

For example, if your friend calls to hang out with you, they spend a few hours with you, and sometime during the encounter, they mention a problem they have. Maybe their car broke down, they need to cut down an overgrown tree in their front yard, or they are short on laundry money.

An expert user won't ask you for anything up front. They will build some rapport, then mention the problem. Before you know it, you might be offering to give them a ride to work, to fell their tree with your chainsaw, or to let them use your washer and dryer.

There's nothing wrong with doing favors for your friends but it becomes uncool when your friend wants something from you almost every time they see you.

2. They never put you in mind

Your friend tend to treat you like a low priority. They don't seem to think about you. They never say stuff like "Oh, I heard this one song that I think you'll like!"; they don't tend to call you during the holidays; they don't tend to bring back gifts for you when they go on a trip.

They only remember you when they need something from you. Friends who are using you are almost always inconsiderate.

3. They say not-so-good things about you

Users find it easy to gossip about you. They stop at nothing when it's time to talk about you.

They'll speak poorly of you when you're not around because they don't really care about your reputation.

4. When you need their help, they are never available

Yoi don't find them when you need them the most. Sometimes it's not even about money or resources—on occasion, we may just need someone to talk to when our world is crashing down.

When something tragic happens, does your friend show up for you? Or do you hear nothing but crickets chirping?

5. They get pushy or mnipulative if you don't give them what they want

Good friends understand boundaries. Crappy friends who only want to use you for resources might get angry if you don't give in to their requests. They may even try to manipulate you by guilt-tripping, or saying things like, "I thought you were my friend!" when you tell them no.

Watch out for this controlling behavior. Real friends respect your free will and they'll like you even if you have nothing besides your friendship to give.


You should be conscious of the people around you so you don't get used by people who claim to be your friend. Know your worth and draw back from people who wants to use you at all costs.

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