Kalamazoo, MI
one-hundred-forty Years of Service to the Student

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(Graphic by Graham Key)

My ex-best friend is a toxic person. She would literally call me trash. I would accept it because I didn’t know any better. Thinking back, she was a major reason why high school made me sick.

I was miserable in her presence. I blamed those feelings on high school, but no doubt this was because my life source was being sucked out with every minute I spent with my so-called best friend.

I soon learned that toxic people make me toxic, and so with clear eyes I found some other people to surround myself.

Toxic people and situations are unavoidable, that’s true. However, that does not mean you need to stay in these spaces if you are uncomfortable.

In hindsight these things seem like common sense, but I speak from experience in that it is harder than you might expect.

You might feel guilty. At least I did. Please know that it is okay. You are a human being with emotions that call out to be felt. You need to feel them so that you can move on and live your life.

Keep in mind that you are a college student. You are learning to balance academics and social lives with finances and family. You are a rock star. Many of you have stress up to your eyeballs. You do not need any more.

Sometimes you realize how bad someone is for you after knowing them for two months, and other times, two minutes. In my case, it took me four long years.

I let the guilt and anxiety I was feeling delay the process, and so I was enveloped for quite a time in stress that I did not want because of a flakey friend.

Moving forward, I am going to make sure the people in my life are good for me. You should make that a goal, too. Try spending more time with people who make you happy, who challenge you, and who appreciate you as you are.

When in doubt, remember that the people you bring into your life should be honored. Because you are great.

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