How to Tell if You Are in a Toxic Relationship
“Toxic” is not just the name of a famous song by Britney Spears. It’s also a definition of a relationship that brings destruction and sadness. A toxic relationship is something that people often fall into without realizing how bad the situation is. They usually don’t even try to escape this cage. Why? Because of love, affection, or fear. But if you feel unhappy with your relationship, it’s time to change something, and this article will help you understand if you are in a toxic relationship.
Why Is It Important to Exit a Toxic Relationship?
We all love love, and we all love being loved back. That’s why sometimes people prefer not to pay attention to little details that might ruin the magic of the world that this person has made up. He or she might not see the influence of the partner and their bad attitude because of a subconscious (or conscious) fear of loneliness. This is what makes a toxic relationship even worse – not all people are ready to end this nightmare.
A toxic relationship often causes various mental problems – depression, neurosis, and anxiety alongside with low self-esteem or even suicidal thoughts. A relationship should bring joy, a sense of protection, care, and stability. A toxic partner takes all this away, creating an unhealthy atmosphere. The following are the most common signs that your relationship is slowly destroying you.
1. You Always Feel Guilty
Guilt, in general, is a healthy emotion that we face throughout our lives. It helps us understand what’s right and what’s wrong or how to avoid making mistakes in the future. However, a constant sense of guilt is unnatural and unhealthy as it has a bad influence on your self-esteem and your psychological balance.
Does your partner always comment on your actions or the way you look, making you feel like you do everything wrong? Then you should make it stop.
2. You Feel Lonely Even When You Are Together
A great relationship means that your partner is also your best friend, someone whom you can talk to about anything in the world, who supports you and cares about you. However, if you feel like you are lonely and not understood even after trying to communicate with your partner, you may be involved in a relationship with the wrong person.
If being together with your partner doesn’t bring you any joy (and especially if it makes you feel worse than being alone), consider ending this relationship.
3. You Don’t Share Much with Your Friends and Family
Some partners are just too jealous. It can get so extra that it makes you talk less to the people closest to you. Toxic relationships make people distance themselves from their families and friends, which results in losing the chance to get help from people who know you the best.
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If your partner presses you to give up contacts with your friends and family, it is truly a bad sign. Ask yourself, why does your partner do that to you? Maybe he or she understands that this way you will become more dependent on your relationship. This is a manipulative move that ties you down and limits your freedom.
4. You Feel Emotionally Drained
Not all vampires look like Edward from Twilight. Some of them look just like regular people. Of course, we are not talking about the ones who crave blood but about the ones who actually take your energy and will away. Emotional vampires might seem like a myth, but they do exist.
They don’t have fangs and don’t make you fall into some hypnotic sleep. They just exhaust people around them and make people emotionally weak, suppressed, and dependent. By taking your inner calmness away with scandals, blaming, suspicions, and insults, they make you do what they want.
Energy vampires might not look as scary as Dracula, but their toxic influence is as dangerous as sharp teeth of any bloodsucking immortal.
5. You Are Careful with What You Say and Do
Are you always afraid of making your partner angry with what you say or do? Do your conversations feel more like tipping on your toes? If instead of expressing your thoughts and feelings genuinely, you have to be very careful with your words, that means that you don’t have the kind of emotional bond that has to exist in a really deep relationship. Being with someone means understanding the needs of your partner and their experience. If you can’t share what bothers you with your significant other, ask yourself if they are really the one who you should be with.
6. You Give up Things that You Like for Your Partner
It doesn’t matter what it is that your partner makes you give up (a hobby, a friend, a job), it’s not a good sign. If you like to dance, sing, meet with your friends, visit galleries, or if you have some other hobbies etc., but have to avoid doing it in order not to annoy your partner, this is one of the surefire signs of being in a toxic relationship.
7. You Don’t Have Privacy
Does your partner check your phone and emails? Does he or she want to spend all your time together? Is he or she against you spending quality time with your friends?
If you can recognize your partner’s behavior in these questions – consider ending this relationship. If there is no trust in a relationship, there is no future for the couple at all. Think about the joy that you are forced to give up when you are not allowed to do what you want. You are in a relationship where you both are equal in rights, so there can be no “I don’t allow you to do that.” Come on!
8. You Are Forced to Do What You Don’t Want To
A lot of toxic partners are really demanding, especially when it comes to plans, activities, etc. They usually consider your opinion irrelevant and decide everything for you. For example, if you are going to see a movie together, you might suggest some particular film, but in the end you always go see what you partner wanted.
It also might be applied to other spheres of life. For example, sexual, social, professional, etc. If you feel like you have no voice in this relationship, it’s the time for changes.
What to Do if You Are Trapped in a Toxic Relationship?
Toxic relationships can rarely be fixed, as there is little to no understanding and willingness to change something. If you feel unhappy with your relationship, try to talk to your partner about your feelings. Comminucation is the key! However, if all of your efforts end up a disaster and your partner stays indifferent, don’t blame yourself. Basically, what you have to do in this case is end the relationship with the least amount of damage as possible.
It’s not always easy, as toxic partners usually are afraid of losing the power they have over another person. Sometimes this might lead to aggressive behavior. So, be careful and try to distance yourself as much as possible. Don’t fall for provocations and be strong – they might tell you that you won’t find anybody else, that they love you like nobody ever will, or that they can’t live without you. Your happiness should be the priority #1, and you can be happy, just believe it.