Relationships, they’re ever-growing and evolving. Some start slow, and steady, blossoming into something strong, healthy and fulfilling for all parties involved. While others start out hot and heavy, only to quickly fizzle out once the lust and newness wears off. In some cases, some people are able to notice that their new match is a bad idea from the start, making it easy to cut ties. But what happens, if you figure that out once your feelings are already too deeply involved? We all love the idea of love and getting swept off of our feet. But what happens when that love takes a turn for the worst and morphs into something toxic? Keep reading for five signs that will tell you if you’re in a toxic relationship, and how to get out of it.
What is a Toxic Relationship?
Toxic relationships are relationships that can be emotionally and sometimes physically damaging to the relationship’s participants. You can have toxic relationships with your friends, your family, coworkers, and significant others. For the sake of this post, I’ll be focusing on toxic love relationships (aka relationships with your significant other). In these types of relationships, they are built on the following characteristics: volatility, uncertainty, codependency, suspicion and anger. There’s a constant cycle of ups and downs, with at least on party having a mission of conquering the other.
These relationships normally arise when there’s a lack of healthy boundaries, communication and trust. Chances of a toxic relationship developing heighten when you’re determined to be with someone you know deep down is no good for you. And although, they don’t always start out as toxic, they surely can destroy one’s self-esteem and self-worth. In fact, a lot of people don’t realize that they’re in a toxic relationship until it’s too late.
Signs of a Toxic Relationship
This doesn’t have to be you! Let your feelings guide you and pay attention. Most if not all the time, your gut tells you everything you need to know about your relationship.
Here are some things to check for…
You’re Doing All the Work
All the effort to get the relationship on the right track is coming from one side aka yours. You take drastic measures to change your life, to accommodate theirs, but they haven’t done anything.
You’re Always Nervous
Do you constantly feel like you’re walking on eggshells? Like, you don’t know what will trigger or spark your next argument because anything can set your partner off? Relationships should be fulfilling, not give you anxiety.
You Can’t Say No
Have you ever felt guilty for saying no to things that didn’t sit well with your or guilty for defending yourself/feelings when you disagree with your partner? You may feel guilty when you’re not constantly going out of your way to put your relationship or your partner first.
You Can’t Do Anything They Don’t Approve of
Trust is nonexistent, you’re not allowed to have certain friends, you’re not allowed to wear certain things, or talk to certain people.
You’re Friends and Loved Ones Don’t Like Them
You make excuses to your friends and family for your partner’s erratic behavior. But sometimes, you’re so wrapped up in your love for the other person, you can’t see them for who they really are. If all or most of your friends and family are raising concerns, they may be seeing something that you don’t see.
How to Get Out of a Toxic Relationship
1. Trust Your Gut
Stop ignoring your intuition and act! I don’t know how many times I’ve heard people say that they knew way before things turned sour that they had no business being in their toxic relationship. Yet so many ignored it and stayed. Your intuition is screaming at you for a reason, listen to it.
2. Put Yourself First
Choose your health, happiness and peace of mind first. One of my favorite lines ever comes from Samantha Jones, a character from Sex and the City – “I love you, but I love me more.” Learn it, love it, LIVE IT!
3. Forgive yourself
Ending up in a toxic relationship is more common than you think. Don’t dwell on it or beat yourself up boo. If anything, this is a lesson learned, so don’t be too hard on yourself! Forgive and be gentle with yourself.
4. Get support
You don’t have to be alone in this. Pull on your friends and family for support. If you need more help, seek a therapist.
What are some tips for those trying to get out of toxic relationships? Let us know in the comments!
See how Blair managed in her own toxic relationship… find inspiration in her story!