Friendship Bombs: When Words Explode in Text

How 'Text Bombs' Destroy Friendships The Detrimental Role of Therapy Speak

Text bombs’ and therapy speak are damaging friendships.

A giant typing bubble appears in the middle of a conversation.

They say a picture is worth a thousand words, but in the world of friendships, sometimes a thousand words can be explosive. Picture this: you’re going about your day, thinking everything is hunky-dory with your bestie, when suddenly, out of nowhere, you receive a giant block of text, AKA a friendship bomb. It’s a novel-length message filled with grievances, accusations, and therapy speak that blows your mind. You feel like an emotional bomb squad trying to defuse the situation. Boom!

But why has this become a trend? Isabelle Morley, a clinical psychologist, sheds some light on the matter. She explains that text bombing, also known as the “giant block of text,” has become alarmingly popular for expressing grievances. People are dropping paragraphs on their friends about how they’ve been hurt, the new boundaries they’ve set, and why they can no longer continue the friendship. It’s like receiving a text grenade that explodes all over your emotions.

Now, therapy is great, but therapy speak in these text bombs takes it to a whole new level. Suddenly, people are throwing around terms like “emotional labor,” “toxic,” and “gaslighting” as if they’re handing out pamphlets at a self-help convention. It’s all in the name of self-care, they say. But is it really? As it turns out, therapists are voicing concerns about the damaging effects of using therapy speak to sever ties instead of attempting repair or, at the very least, kindness.

Let’s break it down. These friendship bombs often come loaded with labels like “toxic” and “unsafe,” unfairly judging the person as a whole rather than addressing specific actions. It’s like dropping a truth bomb on someone’s character, leaving no room for nuance or growth. Imagine being handed a one-way ticket to Emotional Doomsday, where your inner world is mercilessly attacked. Ouch!

Even former text bombers admit their regrets. They thought their missives were justified, as they believed they had been hurt more. But in many cases, after the dust settles, they realize the weight of their actions. Hilary Davis, who once bombed her college best friend with a flurry of texts, recalls feeling embarrassed and thankful that her friend still wanted to be her friend. She even went years without knowing if her friend had received those texts! It’s like living in a textual Twilight Zone.

But here’s the twist: therapy speak wasn’t as pervasive back then. Davis didn’t have terms like “boundary” and “toxic” at her disposal. Instead, she focused on expressing her frustrations and how her friend’s actions made her feel. A little less bombastic, don’t you think? Even today, Davis and her best friend are still happily texting away, proving that those college years were just fireworks in the grand scheme of their friendship.

So, what should you do when you find yourself on the receiving end of a friendship bomb? Well, therapists suggest a more civilized approach. Instead of launching an all-out textual assault, try using “I” statements and addressing the specific actions that affected you. Better yet, have a face-to-face conversation or at least a phone call. Let’s keep it old school, shall we?

And if things don’t improve, it’s okay to distance yourself from that friendship. Shift the frequency of your interactions or the level of intimacy shared. After all, not all friends are created equal, and it’s okay to have different roles for different people in your life. Sometimes, you just have to find the right peg to fit into that square hole.

In the end, Kendal, our protagonist, takes the time to reassess her friendship. She sits on her response, making sure it reflects what she truly wants to say. At the end of the day, she knows she deserves friends who will give her the benefit of the doubt, rather than detonating friendship bombs.

So, dear readers, remember: in the realm of friendship, words can be explosive. Handle them with care, and think twice before pressing send on that text bomb. Because when it comes to friendships, it’s better to defuse than to detonate.

Have you ever been on the receiving end of a friendship bomb? How did you handle it? Share your experience in the comments below!