I realized far too recently how important it is to be reflective about what a friend means to me. It took me a few emotional bruises to understand the concept of a frenemy—a friend that isn’t actually your friend at all. Sometimes, we take it for granted that a friend is in our corner, on our side, there for the good and bad. It's a stunning betrayal to realize that is not the case.
If it's not motivated by true affection, it's not true friendship. What motivates the "frenemy" relationship? These typically happen when someone wants to get close to you because they admire things about your life or who they think you are—but it's not a selfless admiration. It's more akin to envy.
Most of us don't learn the difference between real friends and frenemies growing up. We have to figure it out on our own—which we usually do by getting burned. But there are a few criteria I've developed to differentiate friends from frenemies before you put too much time or trust into that relationship.