Are You in a Toxic Relationship? 15 Signs You Need to End It…

When a relationship is toxic, it can drag you down to a low place. In a romantic relationship there can be many different types of abuse including different forms of emotional, psychological and physical abuse. There are some instances in which it is necessary to immediately leave a relationship.These instances include, threats or unpredictable reactions that make you fear for yourself or your loved ones.

In addition to psychological abuse like gaslighting and humiliation. If you find yourself in these instances, it’s important to confide in a trusted friend, family member, therapist, etc., so that you can make an action plan to leave your partner and the relationship. If you do not find yourself in this type of situation, and feel like there are things worth salvaging in the relationship you should work towards setting up healthy boundaries for yourself and pushing for change in the relationship.

Sometimes people don’t realize they are toxic until they are faced with someone who won’t cater to their ways. It’s also important to recognize that toxicity doesn’t necessarily stem from one person, and that it’s possible that both people in the relationship are toxic and need to get help. It is possible to turn a toxic relationship into a healthy one, if both you and your partner are honest with yourselves and each other and if you put in what can be very difficult emotional work to make things change for the better. Below are 15 signs of an abusive relationship that indicate it’s time for you to end it......

Extreme criticism

Partners are supposed to lift one another up, period. If you find that your partner is extremely and unnecessarily critical of your decisions, actions, appearance, or anything else you should bring this to their attention and reconsider your relationship.

Humiliation

Like extreme criticism, humiliation tactics are meant to put you down, but normally happen when you are around other people. Humiliation is meant to lower your self-esteem and make you more reliant on your partner/less likely to leave the relationship. If you feel like your partner often tries to embarrass you in front of friends or family, it’s time to take a step back and evaluate your relationship.

Neglect

If you feel like your partner intentionally ignores you or in more severe instances, deprives you of attention, then you are likely experiencing neglect. Neglect can cause a lot of psychological harm, and you should leave the relationship if you are being neglected.

Gaslighting

One type of psychological abuse is gaslighting. Gaslighting is when a person (in this case your partner) uses manipulation to make you question the validity of your thoughts, experiences and memories. Gaslighting is very unhealthy, and can cause you to question yourself and lose confidence in your memory. This is a definite sign that you are in a toxic relationship.

Jealousy

There tends to be a degree of jealousy in most relationships, but if your partner is jealous to the point that it is affecting the trust in your relationship, or impeding on your social life outside of the relationship, this is a bad sign.

Ultimatums

Partnerships are about communication and compromise. If your partner refuses to compromise, making you choose “them or me”, “this or that”, it is a sign that they are unwilling to compromise, which is not a good sign in any relationship.

Isolation from your support system

If your partner tries to limit the time you spend with your friends and family, or the contact you have with them, this is a major red flag. Your partner should not isolate you from people that care about you and will look out for your best interest.

Control

Even when you are in a relationship, it’s important to remember that you are your own person. You have agency and should be allowed to make your own decisions. If your partner tries to control your behavior or your appearance or really anything about you, you are in a toxic relationship.

Lack of boundaries

This can often be related to your partner wanting to control you. When your relationship has a lack of boundaries, your partner may constantly call or text you when you are not together, and become angry if you are not constantly available to respond to them. This type of behavior can stem from a lack of trust that results in an attempt to control or surveil your every move. It’s not your job to constantly be available to your partner, and you should discuss creating boundaries.

Withholding affection

Affection and intimacy are huge parts of a romantic relationship. If your partner withholds affection from you as a form of “punishment” or as a way to manipulate you, this is a sign of a toxic relationship.

Threats

Emotional and/or physical threats related to you or people that you love are never an acceptable part of a relationship. Regardless of what the threat entails, this is a sign of toxicity.

Blame game

Relationships are all about give or take (and like we discussed above) compromise. If your partner constantly blames everything on you, without taking any responsibility for problems in your relationship or even problems with their own behavior, then you should consider taking a step back from your relationship.

Infidelity

Infidelity is a huge red flag in any relationship. If you and your partner are supposed to be in a monogamous relationship, and you learn of infidelity, you should reconsider your relationship and, perhaps, call things off. Note: finding out that your partner is cheating is NOT a reason to ‘open up your relationship’!!

Physical abuse

Physical abuse in any form (slapping, hitting, pushing, etc.) is never acceptable in a relationship. You should never justify or accept physical abuse, even if it happens only once.

Sexual abuse

Even if you are in a sexual relationship, you should have complete autonomy over your body. If your partner ever forces you to have sex or perform sexual acts that you do not want to, you should leave the relationship.

If you’re not experiencing any of the above toxic red flags and you’re interested in learning more about Relationship Coaching, visit Relish to sign up for a free 7-day trial today - you’ll have the opportunity to reflect on some of the issues in your relationship, as well as some of the changes you’d like to see - whether this is more closeness, less conflict, more sex or more support. It is never too late to get some help for your relationship - and now is a great time to take the first step.

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