Does your relationship make you feel uneasy or uncomfortable and you can’t out your finger on it? Are you starting to dread seeing or talking to your partner or friend? You might be in a toxic relationship. In toxic relationships we tend to put our own happiness on the back burner to please the other person. We often get lost in the toxic pattern of the relationship and begin to accept it as normal when it is anything but. Here are some signs of a toxic relationship.
- You can’t seem to do anything right. No matter what it is, large or small, there is something not quite right with the job you’ve done. Your other seems to be annoyed, irritated or just downright angry with your performance.
- You spend more time worrying about your other’s happiness than your own. A relationship should be a partnership: a give and take where both people are getting their needs met and experience happiness. In a toxic relationship you find yourself spending more time tending to the needs of the other than yourself. You become more concerned about the happiness of the other person than your own self-care.
- You can’t let your hair down. In a healthy relationship it is safe to be yourself. In a toxic relationship it is anything but. Toxic people make it hard to truly be who you are for fear of criticism, reject or outright abuse.
- Passive aggression. Toxic people are unable to consistently communicate and often use passive aggressive ways to let you know what they want. In a healthy relationship direct communication is not only used but it is valued.
- Jealousy. In a new relationship, especially a romantic one, a little bit of jealousy often feels good. However, jealousy can quickly turn to control and even abuse. In a healthy relationship the individuals trust each other and there is no need for continued jealousy.
- Constant criticism. Let’s be honest, we could all use some healthy constructive criticism once in a while. However, in a toxic relationship the criticism goes well beyond what is healthy and productive. In a toxic relationship the other spends a lot of energy making sure you know exactly what and how you are doing wrong and does not hold back when telling you.
- Avoidance. People in healthy relationships want to see each other. If you have started to avoid your friend or partner, this may be a red flag you are in a toxic relationship.
- Growth and change are considered bad. It is healthy for us to grow and change as we learn and develop throughout our lives. In a toxic relationship these qualities are often looked at as negative and strongly discouraged either directly or indirectly. If your other does not support your positive movement, it may be time to rethink the relationship.
- Keeping score and bringing up the past. Toxic people love to keep a record of all your wrong doings in a relationship and remind you of it often. Everyone makes mistakes in relationships and healthy people learn from them. Then, healthy people move on. Toxic people do the opposite. Keeping score drains the happiness and positive qualities from a relationship quicker than a cat on a waterbed.
As always, be well and try to detox if needed.