How to identify a toxic relationship. Relationship, irrespective of the kind have a way of influencing how we see life, how we interact, and how we relate with other people around us. That is why having a healthy relationship is necessary if you want to enjoy a healthy and peaceful lifestyle. However, no relationship is perfect, both in personal and business atmosphere. Unfortunately, the media, the society has carved “the perfect” relationship blueprint and if your own is not going with the plan, then it is not right.
Nonetheless, we all can agree that a good relationship makes you feel cared for, secure, happy, respected and above all, gives you the freedom to be yourself without being judged.
Furthermore, a toxic relationship is the direct opposite of a healthy relationship which it drains, depletes and brings out the worse in a person.
The last thing you want is a toxic relationship; it can ruin your business, your life and also make you distant from your friends and family who genuinely love you and want the best for you. Here’s the million dollar question, how do I know my relationship is toxic? The following signs will show you if your relationship is toxic or healthy for you.
One of the glaring signs of a toxic relationship is when your acts of love are not reciprocated. I once was in a relationship where all the calling, texting, visiting, gifts were all done by me. The truth is I never saw it as anything; I felt “you do not give to expect a gesture in return.”
What I failed to understand that, you can give without loving, but you cannot love without giving. Even in the scripture, God demonstrated His love for us by GIVING His only begotten son Jesus Christ. John 3:16.
What if he/she doesn’t have as much as I do? This question made me stay with him and believed “all will be well.” I want to tell you something that you may not like to hear from a loved one. Your partner will give no matter how little he/she has; if your partner cannot give from the little they have, they will not give even though they are swimming in a pool of money. Luke 16:10. If you/ he cannot sacrifice from the little he/she has, it is because your partner feels that you are not worth going the extra mile for. Besides, if you cannot turn to each other, what reason would you have to be in that relationship?
Furthermore, giving is not limited to money, and gifts, it also talks about quality time and services. If you are in this kind of relationship, it will leave you in the negative and can never run smoothly no matter how “okay” you think it is.
2. Lack of Trust
The only thing constant is change; humans can change, which makes you hold back. You do not have to trust anyone, but you have to trust someone. A relationship without trust is like a vehicle without gas and a vehicle without gas is for fashion (showcasing) and not for function. The bottom-line is, you can stay in it all you want, but it will not go anywhere.
3. Unconducive atmosphere
When there is constant anger, a tensed atmosphere is a sign of an unhealthy relationship; it may hurt other areas of your life as well.
We are humans, and no one is perfect. We may not be able to measure up to expectations, but there is a red flag when it gets persistent with different excuses. A relationship does not have to be an avenue where all your needs are met, but it can also help you grow, and when your partner is not ready to add anything to your life in a positive manner, or at least cheer you up when you need someone by your side, you have to rethink your relationship. Furthermore, your partner does not have to be the guilty party, if you do not find yourself going the extra mile for your loved one, then re-evaluate your relationship and communicate with your partner.
5. Constant judgment
A judgmental relationship is not a healthy one; it results in low self-esteem. A relationship is meant to be a haven, a place where you relax, recharge, and set for the next life’s battle. It is not supposed to be the other way round. If you keep changing your opinions to please someone else, you are in a toxic relationship.
However, do not mistake constructive criticism for being judgmental. There are times people do not want to be reminded of their flaws, they are knowledgeable of this information already, all they need then is for someone to believe in them. If you are not getting this from your relationship, then I suggest you talk to your partner about it because it is impossible to build your self-esteem in an environment filled with negativity.
6. Lack of respect
Everyone including little children wants to be respected. No matter how “playful” or “funny” a person can be, learn to set boundaries because mutual respect is a recipe for a healthy relationship. Furthermore, when one partner is always making the other to feel unworthiness, it is insidious; a healthy relationship should not make you think you are unworthy of your partner.
7. Mutual Avoidance
There is no point in trying to save a relationship where both parties are comfortable being apart, as a matter of fact, they instigate such situations. Once again, do not mistake “wholeness” for mutual avoidance; I am not saying it is healthy to be clingy, to your partner every second.
8. Friction in the family
Sometimes when our friends and family members are not comfortable with your partner, it does not mean “they don’t just get it” or they do not want you to enjoy the “love of your life” they probably see red flags you are too in love to see. This is the time to sit yourself down and ask questions,
Why don’t they get it? What is your partner doing that is turning them off? You can also ask some members of your family you are closest to, but remember to trust their judgment.
9. When your kids feel uneasy with your partner
Children have a way of knowing who is suitable for you, and when they are not always happy seeing your partner around it shows something is not right. For all single parents out there, you have a choice; a choice of meeting someone who will genuinely love you and your kids. You do not have to force anyone to love your kids, and if your partner sees them as unwanted or extra baggage, you have to slow things down and reevaluate your choice of partner. Whatever or whomever you beg to have; you will continue begging to keep.
Lastly, if you know you cannot be with someone who has kids from past relationship(s) then do not pretend or force yourself, because your true feelings will one day spring forth, and it will not be pretty.
10. Feeling trapped
Why are you in the relationship? Is it because you love the person or only because you do not see a way out? The latter shows you are in a dangerous relationship. Do not stay in a relationship because of pity; no one should make you feel that way. One of the beautiful things about love is FREEWILL, and when your freedom is threatened, then it is no longer a valid relationship.
11. Lack of communication
Communication is a key to any relationship; it ensures there is no misunderstanding, and that everyone is on the same page. If you are in a relationship where both parties do not share their fears, happiness, thoughts, dreams, goals, and so on. It means something is wrong somewhere.
12. When it brings out your worst
Proverbs 4:18, a relationship should make you better than you were, and not the other way round. What has changed since the inception of the relationship? Have you been more productive at work or school?
Finally, relationships are crucial, and a toxic relationship can cost your time, and energy, that you could put to better use. If not careful it can cost you your life. So, be real, stay true to your values, be careful, and be strong, if you want to leave the toxic relationship, listen to your heart, and above all love and value yourself.