All relationships have their ups and downs. Some amount of conflict is to be expected, because two people can never be constantly in sync. Relationships are meant to be a give-and-take, a partnership in which both parties are enriched.
But there are relationships that do more harm than good. Toxic relationships don’t necessarily start out this way. The issues may build up over months or even years.
Here are 10 signs your relationship has turned toxic:
- You can’t be yourself. Remember listening to your favorite music? Or eating out at your favorite restaurant? Laughing at the things you find funny? Do you bury what makes you, YOU, to keep from rocking the boat?
- . You hide your relationship from family and friends. Have you stopped confiding in the people closest to you about your relationship troubles out of fear of judgement? Have you gone so far as to lie about whether or not you’re still in the relationship?
- You are blamed for things which are not your responsibility. You can’t control the weather, how noisy the neighbors are, or the fact that the plumber is four hours late. Does your partner’s annoyance at things completely out of your control spill over into the blame game, with you at the center?
- You are criticized constantly. Can you never seem to do even the smallest things right? Does it seem like everything you say is the wrong thing? Do harsh words come more frequently than kind words?
- You avoid being around him or her. Do you take an extraordinarily long time to run errands? Do you avoid going home until after your partner has hopefully already fallen asleep? Have you rearranged your schedule significantly so you don’t have to see your partner as much
- You can feel the negativity when you are together. Angry silence can sometimes be as stressful as an argument. Does the tension ring like a tone in the air above you both?
- You only think about making him or her happy. Has self-care gone out the window for you? Are you more focused on keeping your partner happy to keep things calm than on what makes you happy? Are you convinced your happiness is less important?
- You feel as though there is no point. Have you asked your partner to change, only to have it blow back up on you? Do you feel like you’ve invested so much effort in this relationship, there’s no point getting out of it? That you’re better off in an unhappy relationship than risking being alone?
- You are put down in front of others. Does your partner pick on you when you’re around family, friends and coworkers? Are you starting to avoid being around other people when you’re together?
- Growth and change are seen as negative by your partner. Does your partner belittle your efforts at self-improvement? Does he or she get offended if you mention you might both benefit from counseling or reading books about relationships?
Nobody deserves to be in a toxic relationship. You deserve respect and to be valued for who you are, even if you don’t believe it. If you answered Yes to many of these questions, you may be in a toxic relationship.
If this is the case, you can — and should — get help. Working through a toxic relationship, either together or separately, is too hard to do alone. We can help.
Reach out with an email below and we’ll do our best to help you with this relationship.