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people to avoid when struggling

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Life is filled with peak and valley experiences. And although we should always be mindful of the company we keep, when it comes to surviving challenging circumstances — such as a devastating medical diagnosis, divorce, the death of a loved one, or even the loss of a job — surrounding ourselves with the right people is paramount. Here are five personality types you should definitely avoid during trying times.

People who are amused by your pain

First and foremost, you’ll want to distance yourself from people who quite clearly are using your tragedy as a form of entertainment. Generally speaking, these are the people who desire to hear every salacious detail about your breakup and probe you with questions that make you uncomfortable. The ones who hop on Facebook to post about the death of your loved one before checking to see if all of your relatives have been notified. You know, the one who seems to low-key delight in your misfortune. Without fail, this person will make you feel worse about your present situation.

People who kick you when you’re down

We all know people who have a habit of either intentionally or unintentionally kicking people when they’re down. Oftentimes, these are people with “I told you so” attitudes who will respond to news of your recent layoff by telling you that you chose to work in the wrong industry or make insensitive comments about lifestyle choices when you share that a loved one has passed away. Folks with this high and mighty attitude are virtually incapable of providing you with the empathy and emotional support that you need during challenging times.

People who have all of the answers

Similar to Sister High and Mighty, you’ll also want to avoid people with a know-it-all spirit who seem to have the answers to everyone’s problems but their own. While these people generally mean well, they have a tendency to oversimplify other people’s problems and relentlessly offer basic, common-sense solutions that you likely thought of and tried 10 times over. Conversations with these people can be frustrating and should be held in moderation during trying times.

People who pretend to be perfect

No one’s life is completely perfect. We all have circumstances that we wish were better. Sadly, there are some people who make themselves unrelatable because they are hell-bent on projecting a false sense of perfection. While not done purposely and usually the result of their own insecurities, these people can make you feel worse about your circumstances when you’re having a hard time.

People who are natural worriers

Worry warts also mean well, but they are anxious by nature and can send you into a downward spiral when you are using every bit of your strength just to hold it together. They have a tendency to become hysterical when you share bad news and can cause you to stress even more with worrisome rambling and what-if questions.


When times are tough, the people in our circle have the power to either uplift and strengthen us or weaken and weigh us down. They have the ability to speak life into our situation or speak negativity and doom. While our loved ones generally mean well, not all of them are meant to be a part of our inner-most circles when we are going through it. Choose well when it comes to who you surround yourself with during these times.

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