Do you ever feel like you’re being used? Whether you’re being used by a friend, a family member, or a coworker, being used often feels like you’re being taken advantage of. The truth is, everyone uses people from time to time. It’s just natural to want to show your loved one’s attention and care, but when that starts to feel manipulative, there’s probably something else going on. That’s where being aware of the signs of being used comes in.
In this article, we’ll explore some common red flags of being used that you can watch out for if you want to avoid being taken advantage of.
It’s Mostly You Who Initiate The Conversation
For this one, you have to be really observant. If you feel like it’s always you who initiates conversations, it could be a sign that they’re using you. Whether it’s to ask for something, to try and make you feel guilty, or to drain your energy, when someone uses you, they want to control the whole situation and don’t need to talk to you about anything else but their needs.
If you feel like you are being used by someone in this way, it is important to communicate your feelings to them. Let them know that you are not just a sounding board for their ideas and that you would also like to have a conversation where you can share your own thoughts and feelings or talk about something else than themselves. If they are not interested in having this type of conversation, then it might be best to distance yourself from them.
You Feel Like You Can’t Say No
It’s natural to want to say yes to people when they ask you to do things, but if someone’s asking you to do something you feel is beyond your ability to do, you need to say no. People will try to guilt you into saying yes all the time, but they should respect your boundaries. If they constantly pressure you to do things that make you feel like you’re being too demanding or controlling, it could be a red flag that they’re using you.
If you’re being used, you’re being manipulated. When you try to push back and explain that you don’t have time to do their thing, they’ll keep pushing and making it seem like it’s urgent and you have to help them out. If they keep insisting, it’s a sign that they’re using you.
They Never Show Appreciation or Gratitude
People are more likely to show gratitude if they just realize that it’s an important part of any relationship. If someone constantly asks you for favors or gifts and never shows appreciation for what you do for them, it might be a sign that they’re using you. How you go around showing gratitude can vary from person to person, but it’s still important to do.
If you notice your partner, friend, family member, or someone else never says thank you or shows any gratitude, it could be a sign that they’re using you. To determine if they are using you, try saying something like, “I know that you don’t like to say thank you or show gratitude, but I think it’s really important to me.”
If this happened once or twice, it would be understandable, but if they never say thank you, you are dealing with a person that’s using you for their own benefit.
They Only Care And Talk About Themselves
Another red flag that someone is using you is that they only care about themselves or always put you down. It’s a pretty safe bet that they’re using you for their benefit. This person is likely to be self-centered and only interested in getting what they want. They will also try to control the conversation, and steer it towards topics that are of interest to them. If you find yourself in a conversation with someone like this, it is best to end it as quickly as possible.
They’re Only Nice To You When They Need Something
In order to use you, they have to be nice to you. If they’re constantly cold, unfriendly, and only talking to you when they need something, they’re not actually interested in bonding with you. They care about getting what they want, so they’ll only be nice to you when they need something from you.
They might start out being friendly and complimentary to you, but don’t assume they’re genuine. They’re trying to get you to like them, so they’re being friendly and complimentary because they need something from you. Once they’ve got what they want, they’ll start cold ignoring, ghosting you, and being bratty again.
Now that you know what to look out for, you can be more aware of when someone is using you. Practicing being assertive can help you feel more confident in your boundaries and say no when you need to. If you notice any of these signs of being used, don’t hesitate to speak up. You deserve to be treated with respect and treated like an equal. In fact, no one deserves to be used for the benefit of someone else.