Are you in a relationship that is positive and healthy? If those words don't come to mind when you think about your relationship, you may have another type of relationship known as a toxic relationship.
Toxic relationships have been happening for centuries and sadly has been passed down through the generations. What is appalling is the unhealthy and abusive behaviors were acceptable. Thank God, times have changed, and I am thankful that today there is a wealth of information and support groups available to help people.
With all this said, many of us have grown up in toxic families and believed the behavior is normal. Therefore, it's all we may know. Also, toxic relationships can be with anyone - friends, family, significant other and spouses. This is the reason it is important to first understand what a toxic relationship is. Then we can unpack the characteristics and behaviors to watch for.
So, let’s start with a couple of definitions.
“A toxic relationship is one that makes you feel unsupported, misunderstood,
demeaned, or attacked. A relationship is toxic when your well-being is
threatened in some way—emotionally, psychologically, and even physically”.
- Elizabeth Scott, PhD
“Toxic relationships are characterized by a lack of trust, controlling behaviors,
and frequent lying. Often one partner is prioritized instead of coming together
as a team. While toxic relationships can, at times, be healed, both partners
must be willing to adapt and work on the relationship.” – Sarah Fielding
It may be difficult to accept you are in a toxic relationship. This is normal. I encourage you to continue reading and let the information sink in. When the time is right you may read this again and decide if you might be in a toxic relationship.
1) There is Competition in a Toxic Relationship
Do you feel as if you are always trying to prove something to the person you are in relationship with? Or maybe that they need to be in control of you? Well, according to Psychology Today, a toxic relationship is one where competition and conflict exist. More specifically, this competition and conflict tend to arise from a need to be in control.
If you feel that the person is trying to control you, or if you feel they need your control to succeed, then this is not a healthy dynamic. Both individuals in a healthy relationship should function on their own and come together to be better. So if this isn't true for your relationship, it might be toxic.
2) Jealousy and Blame Exist in a Toxic Relationship
One of the major aspects of a toxic relationship is there will be lots of jealously and blame. One person will constantly be jealous of what the other is doing and blame you for their negative feelings. This can, in turn, make both individuals unhappy.
In any type of relationship, both parties should trust each other enough that jealousy shouldn't be a problem. You should also feel confident the person cares and appreciates you. So if you are the one feeling lots of jealousy in a relationship, then know that is a sign of a bad relationship. Think long and hard if it is a toxic one.
3) People in Toxic Relationships Are Always Fighting
Are you and your person always at each other's throats? Then the relationship is toxic. While all relationships have disagreements from time to time, you should be able to resolve these disagreements and move on. If you find that you can't seem to resolve anything between the two of you, then it's time to let the toxic relationship go because it won’t be getting better anytime soon.
Toxic relationships are relationships that make you feel alone, controlled, jealous, and insignificant.
If you feel any of these above feelings or are always arguing with your friends, family, significant other or spouse, then it is likely that you are involved in a toxic relationship. Since toxic relationships rarely get better on their own, there are a couple of choices:
a) Seek individual counseling and/or
b) Seek counseling together
If the person does not agree to counseling, it may be time to consider letting the relationship go.
Also, let me say as hard as it is, we should take some time to determine what is it in self that makes it ok to accept toxic behaviors? Could it be because we grew up with like behaviors or maybe we have our own unhealthy behaviors?
During my own healing journey, it was difficult to look at myself, to ask if I have unhealthy behaviors and face myself. However, I was determined. I was tired of being in unhealthy, unloving relationships and it was time to make a shift in the way I chose to be treated. I've done my work and have healed a great deal. Nowadays, I know the signs of a toxic person and I’m able to remove myself from the relationship. The work to heal was challenging but not impossible. I have gained the power to choose who I want to have relationship with and choose individuals who I can have healthy relationships with.
If you are interested in learning how to Let Go of Toxic Relationships, I offer a bundle that provides insights and understanding on:
How To Tell When a Friend Is Toxic
Can You Fix a Toxic Friendship?
5 Signs You Have Toxic Friends
5 Signs of a Toxic Relationship
4 Ways Toxic Relationships Harm You
Included in your bundle: eBook, 5 audios, and 40 min webinar.
Added BONUS: FREE eBook, "Who Are You? Find Greater Success!"
For more info go to my website https://www.movingforwardforlife.com/toxic-relationships