People / Resolutions

How to tell when a relationship has become toxic

Many people get into a relationship without considering that their belief about relationships can be toxic. Remember that the 'toxic relationship' meaning encompasses giving love a priority over important aspects of a relationship such as affection, trust, and respect. But there are many signs that a relationship has turned toxic.

Today’s society teaches lovers to be emotionally dependent on their partners. Many of the people who heed this call have no idea what is a toxic relationship. Understand that stable relationships demand lovers to give each other respect and space they need. By taking such considerations into account, you’ll hardly end up being a victim of emotional or physical abuse.

If you just began a relationship or you're starting to get into dating, it’s important to learn the signs of a toxic love life. This way, you will save yourself the burden of being with an abusive lover. Here's what to look for.


Regular passive-aggressive behaviours 

Feeling jealous isn’t one of the signs of a toxic relationship that you should not be worried about. There are many instances in your love life where you will feel jealous. Understand that what makes any relationship toxic is what you ultimately do with your feelings. A common sign of toxic behaviour is when lovers regularly check their spouse’s emails and phone or constantly ask them for their whereabouts.

In most cases, such a toxic behaviour goes unnoticed, but if you do not pay close attention, it can take a toll on your love life. 


Being negative for a long time

Negativity among lovers is an aspect that can make leaving a toxic relationship challenging. If your partner keeps dragging you into their mess because you are the closest person to them, it’s one of the signs you are in a toxic relationship. The other sign of negativity is where they don’t say something outright but rather find petty and small ways to piss you off.

If this happens, it is a sign that both of you aren’t comfortable communicating clearly and openly. There is no reason your lover should be passive-aggressive if they are safe expressing insecurity or anger. 


Buying solutions to relationship issues

In many toxic relationships, the issues partners face are covered with good feelings and excitement associated with going on a trip or buying something nice. Buying your lover luxuries to cover up the real problem can be toxic in a relationship. Eventually, the problem will emerge worse next time. One way how to get out of a toxic relationship is by talking about how both of you can rebuild your relationship.

If your love life is causing one of you to feel unappreciated or ignored, talk about how such feelings can eventually be restored.


Indirect character assassination

Some people grow up belittling siblings and friends as a way to connect. If such character assassination is taken into adulthood, it can be a source of a toxic relationship. Whenever you think of belittling your partner, you have to understand that it’s never about whether or not you mean what you say. It comes down to what your partner will internalise and how your partner is wired.  

You still have to consider that behaviour or dialogue (intended or not) to take away once worth is still considered character assassination.


Being controlling without your knowledge

Many people who have controlling behaviour end up being victims of toxic relationships. Some of the traits that indicate controlling behaviour include telling your partner what they can and cannot eat or what they can and cannot wear. Other indicators include partners who demand reports of actions and conversation or purposely making your family or friend uncomfortable when visiting. 

There are different ways on how to fix a toxic relationship so that your partner's controlling nature doesn't cause your love life to be toxic. One way to go about it is by leveraging what they've been through and who they are. 

If you are in a healthy relationship, you'll realise that everything works for the best. There is no doubt that there will be hurdles along the way, but you will most likely make decisions together. You'll even have open discussions on the problems you're facing and enjoy being around each other. When you are in a toxic relationship, it's not easy to spot the red flags.

If you are in a relationship where you are feeling distraught, depleted, and drained, you should know that it is toxic. It's important to understand that the more you stick to a toxic relationship, the harder it will be to get yourself out of it and form a new relationship with a different partner. For your own sake, learn the red flags so that healing from a toxic relationship can be a lot easier.



Author, Robert Andrew Faulkner is a family and child psychologist. He has been working with many couples from the UK and wants to share his experience with you. Robert's hobbies are reading new psychology books and traveling around the world. He has visited more than 15 countries, including France, Germany, the Netherlands, the USA, etc. One of Robert's biggest dreams is to climb Mount Everest and take a photo.


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