Everyone has that one person who is constantly there, who you might call your friend, maybe your significant other, or the one who you can't seem to get away from. The key is making sure that person is worth the amount of time you devote to them in your relationship.
It is hard to recognize how people that you hang around with might start affecting you, and the way you think. But, as the saying goes, "birds of a feather, flock together." A piece of advice, make sure your flock is made up of beautiful swans.
Ok sorry, maybe that was a little too much.
Throughout the course of the 18 years, people have come and gone, and I expect this pattern to continue on for the rest of my life. I think it's important to remember this, and not to get disappointed by people who you may have expected to be in your life forever, because they're truly not meant to be. Don't get me wrong, I fully believe in soulmates. Whether its a friend or a lover who you seem to have the most amazing connections with, there is going to be someone you meet that will be forever yours.
When this happens, you'll know. You won't need to hang on to the people from before, who you were trying to turn into your perfect match. You won't need to fight for their attention, you won't need to question and worry about them not having your back, and you won't find yourself in constant agony, dealing with the drama and the troubles that these people might give you.
I have learned all of this because I believe I have found one of my soulmates, and I have realized that because of this, it is so much easier to let go of the toxic others, paling in comparison to a person I have found be a true friend. It is like finally being able to take off the blinders and recognize that there is no reason to bother with people who won't treat you as well as someone else can.