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Signs of a Clingy Friend

Updated April 17, 2017

There are several types of toxic friendships. One common type of negative friendship is the clingy, needy friend. You may otherwise get along well with this person, but, unfortunately, her behaviour is simply turning you off to the friendship. Just as you wouldn't want a clingy romantic partner, you shouldn't have to maintain a codependent friendship. Learn how to spot these types of friends and then take action to break off the friendship as gently as possible.

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If your friend gets lonely when she spends time by herself, this is a good sign that she may become clingy. While it's normal to get lonely after long periods of time without social interaction, your friend should be able to spend some time by herself without other people around. It's normal to not want to do certain things alone, like spend happy hour at the bar or go to a movie. But other things -- like shopping, grabbing coffee or running errands -- don't always call for a friend to tag along.


If you notice that your friend is always the one to initiate contact between the two of you, and that he is the one who always arranges plans, this could point to a clingy friendship. Worse, your friend may invite himself along to get-togethers and parties that you and a group of friends are engaging in. Also, if a day can't go by without your friend being in touch with you, this could be another warning sign. While some friends who are really close may talk on a daily basis, most friendships aren't like this.


If you find that your friend is adopting your own hobbies and interests, this could be a warning sign that the friendship may turn clingy. While it's normal for friends to bond, share hobbies and open each other up to new interests, your friend shouldn't be copying your lifestyle.

Objective Point of View

If you're trying to figure out if your friend is clingy or not, it may help to get an outsider's opinion. Talk to your friends with whom who have healthy relationships. Make sure that your friends don't know the friend you're discussing. You can also talk with a professional counsellor and explain the details of your friendship.

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About the Author

As a full-time writer in New York's Hudson Valley, Lindsay Pietroluongo's nightlife column and photos have appeared regularly in the "Poughkeepsie Journal" since 2007. Additional publications include "Chronogram," the "New Paltz Sojourn," "About Town" newspaper and "Outsider" magazine. Pietroluongo graduated from Marist College with a B.A. in English.

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