Do you suspect you have a toxic friend, family member or partner in your life? Dr. Phil McGraw, author of the book “Life Code,” says that the world is full of toxic people he calls BAITERs (Backstabbers, Abusers, Imposters, Takers, Exploiters and Reckless) and that evil people are all around us. The key to protecting yourself from BAITERs, the psychologist and talk show host says, is to know how to spot them.
In this clip from “Oprah’s Lifeclass,” Dr. Phil reviews eight characteristics of BAITERs — red flags you need to know in order to identify those who are toxic. First on the list? Entitlement. “They have this air of arrogant entitlement,” Dr. Phil says. “They really believe they’re entitled to your life.”
Another sign of a BAITER is that they lack empathy. “They don’t have any feeling at all for what you’re experiencing,” Dr. Phil explains. “They don’t know how to stand in someone else’s shoes.”
Running through the rest of the list, Dr. Phil points out several more characteristics of these toxic people: They don’t have the ability to feel guilt, they are irresponsible, they thrive on drama, they brag about the last person they outsmarted, they’ve got a bunch of short-term relationships and, lastly, they are delusional.
Once you have identified a BAITER, you can protect yourself from getting harmed. But what if the person being harmed is a friend of yours? Should you say anything if your friend is in a relationship with a BAITER?
It’s a tricky situation, Dr. Phil says. In the video, Dr. Phil shares his advice on whether or not you should risk the friendship and suggests exactly what to say if you do indeed choose to intervene.
Phil continues the discussion of a Baiter during his life class interview with Oprah Winfrey on Oprah.com