Toxic Relationship: What It Is & Evidence Of It
Human beings, with few exceptions, desire to be emotionally and physically close to one another. Life appears to be better shared. Despite this, no human endeavor appears to be more fraught with difficulties and challenges than our interpersonal relationships. Relationships, like most worthwhile pursuits in life, necessitate effort. A toxic relationship necessitates extra effort.
What Exactly Is A Toxic Relationship?
Everything just kind of works in a healthy relationship. Sure, you may disagree on occasion or encounter other roadblocks, but you generally make decisions together, openly discuss any problems that arise, and genuinely enjoy each other’s company.
Another story is about toxic relationships. According to relationship therapist Jor-El Caraballo, in a toxic relationship, you may consistently feel drained or unhappy after spending time with your partner, which can indicate that something needs to change.
Even if you still love your partner, the relationship may no longer be enjoyable. For some reason, you always seem to irritate each other or can’t seem to stop arguing over trivial matters. You might even dread seeing them instead of looking forward to them as you did previously.
We’ll go over some of the most common signs of toxicity in a relationship, as well as offer some advice on what to do if you recognize any of these signs in yourself or your partner.
11 Factors That Show You Are In A Toxic Relationship
1. Lack Of Emotional Availability.
Being slightly emotionally unavailable is common in the early stages of dating, but it can be toxic in a serious relationship. You can’t be committed to someone who can’t be giving, loving, and present, or who constantly pushes you away — and you shouldn’t have to settle for someone who doesn’t meet your emotional needs.
2. Addiction Or Compulsive Behavior — And A Refusal To Seek Help.
Emotional intimacy cannot exist where there is addiction or compulsivity. This type of behavior creates a barrier between you and your partner. Addiction and other dangerous, compulsive behaviors enable one person to self-destruct while causing the other to harbor toxic resentment.
Also Read: Dangers of Premarital Relationships
While a partner who is clean and sober and working a strong 12-step program can be in a healthy relationship, willingness to seek help is essential.
You should not be expected to stand by and watch as your partner self-destructs if he or she has a serious problem that is affecting the relationship.
3. A Pattern Of Cheating.
Some people believe that cheating is a surefire way to end a relationship, but I believe there is some gray area. People make errors.
While cheating is never acceptable, there is a significant difference between someone who makes a mistake once and someone who is a habitual cheater.
The latter demonstrates a pattern of destructive behavior, poor impulse control, and a lack of integrity. This leads me to my next point…
4. A Lack Of Personality.
While you can teach your partner relationship skills, you cannot teach character or instill a moral compass in someone who appears to lack one entirely. You should not have to teach impulse control, integrity, kindness, or compassion to a fully grown adult partner.
5. Everything Revolves Around Them.
When one person in a relationship is going through a crisis, the other person needs to focus on them and their needs.
But you have a problem if your partner constantly talks about themselves, doesn’t ask you about your life and goals, doesn’t care about your opinions, and always makes it about them.
This type of narcissism makes it difficult to connect and makes it unlikely that the person will show empathy, which is a necessary component of a healthy relationship.
6. Obsessive Lying
If your partner attempts to cover up their behavior with constant deception, this is another sign of a toxic relationship, which may also manifest as cheating or addiction. This is a sign of a toxic relationship, whether it is due to a lack of conscience or a full-blown antisocial personality disorder. Simply put, if you can’t trust your partner to tell you the truth, your relationship will fail.
7. Aversion To Self-Reflection.
If your partner is constantly defensive and blaming others for their problems, you are in a toxic relationship. We cannot change negative situations unless we examine how we contribute to the issues in our own lives.
This applies to the relationship as well as an inability or unwillingness to examine how one’s own behaviors contribute to problems. It is impossible to have a healthy relationship if someone is constantly pointing the finger.
8. You’re Discouraged From Making Friends Or Forming A Support Network.
Abusers typically prefer to isolate their victims. People like that do not want their partner to have friends, family, or a large network of people who care about them. Taking that away makes it extremely difficult to leave if things become unbearably bad. If this describes your partner, it is a major red flag and a sign of a toxic relationship (This is not the same as someone pointing out an unhealthy friendship or relationship in your life.)
9. There Isn’t A Learning Curve.
Every couple makes mistakes in their marriage. The key is to be able to learn and adjust as a result of your experiences. You have a problem if your partner repeatedly makes the same mistake and does not change their behavior.
Gaslighting is a type of manipulation in which the recipient’s reality is undermined, leaving them feeling insecure and questioning their sanity.
People who use this technique in their relationships usually want to keep their partner on their toes, making them question their reality.
They want to undermine their partner’s self-esteem in order to gain power and/or control, and they enjoy chaos and conflict.
Abuse of any kind, whether physical, emotional, or sexual, is completely unacceptable in a relationship.
If your partner has hit you once, there is always the possibility that they will hit you again, and you will never be able to be completely honest with them again. If you suspect you’re in danger, don’t waste time diagnosing your relationship; instead, prioritize seeking safety first and foremost.
Is It Possible to Repair a Toxic Relationship?
Many people have attempted to repair a toxic relationship. Only when both people are willing to address their individual issues, own their part of the dysfunctional system, and work on the relationship can this work.
Also Read: How To Rekindle A Broken Relationship
If this is the case, a combination of couples and individual therapy can be extremely beneficial.
Many times, two people choose each other in an unconscious attempt to recreate the conditions of their childhood in order to correct them. When this occurs, couples tend to trigger each other severely. These triggers can be turned into opportunities to help each other heal with the help of a skilled therapist. However, not every couple is capable of doing so.
How Do You End a Relationship When You’re Still in Love?
My advice is to avoid operating from a scarcity mindset, believing there are no other potential partners. Understand what you deserve. When we stay in a destructive relationship, we teach that person that it is acceptable to treat us that way.
This undermines our self-esteem and places us in an unhealthy situation. If this is the case in your relationship, you should end it. If you are in a dangerous situation, call a domestic violence hotline for advice on how to leave safely.