What is considered a toxic relationship?
A toxic relationship is a relationship where the behaviours on the part of the toxic partner are emotionally & often physically damaging to their partner. A toxic relationship damages self-esteem and drains energy. A toxic relationship can be manipulative, usually where one partner may not feel happy and may feel threatened or scared as well. A toxic relationship is not a safe place. Traits of toxic relationships include insecurity, self-centeredness, dominance, and control. It’s important to recognise the signs of a toxic relationship and realise toxic relationships red flags so you can stay informed and know how to deal with them.
What are the signs of a toxic relationship?
1. You avoid expressing your thoughts and feelings
You have your own needs, wants and desires in a relationship. You have your own viewpoints and feelings. However, you don’t bother expressing them because it’s just going to end up with you being ignored, mocked or another fight brewing between you and your partner.
2. You feel bad saying no or disagreeing with your partner
‘No’ is an important word in any relationship. Don’t stop using it anywhere, especially not in your relationships under the promise of love. Healthy relationships need compromise but they also respect the needs and wants of both people. If saying no makes you feel bad because your partner won’t like it, or you feel bad, then it’s not right for you. A loving and healthy partner will respect your wishes. If you’re only accepted when you’re saying ‘yes’, it’s a sign of a toxic relationship and controlling behaviour.
3. All the effort comes from you
You’re the only one making an effort. From showing love, taking initiative and being there. It’s just you. You have to do everything from compromise, decision making and any activities together. Your partner is passive and does nothing and is overly independent. This is a toxic trait where your partner does not want to give and only take.
4. Passive aggressiveness
Passive-aggressive behaviour is a common sign of a toxic relationship and an indirect attack and a cowardly move for control. The attack is subtle and often disguised as something else, such as anger disguised as indifference ‘whatever’ or ‘I’m fine’. Or, “I think you won’t like the food, because it isn’t tasty enough for you.” Or “you stay home as you look tired, and I’ll go with my friends for a drink.” This makes you look like a villain and they are the ones who are caring and kind.
5. The arguments and fights are constant, there is no resolution
Every relationship will have its issues. In a toxic relationship, nothing gets worked through because any conflict ends in an argument. And the resolution can often be one person storming off and not being an adult. There is no trust that the other person will have the capacity to deal with the issue in a calm and helpful manner.
A toxic relationship is not pretty and can have a major impact on your well-being. It’s important you recognise the signs and try and get out of one if you can. There are helplines online and you can even reach out to us on firstname.lastname@example.org for help.
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With over 300 articles published on Evolve. Jash is one of the most viewed writers on topics such as Sleep, Mindfulness and Stress. Drop a mail at Jash@evolveinc.in to connect with him.