It isn't always obvious when a relationship is toxic.
You fell in love with this guy. He was charming, fun, and attentive. As time went by, you started noticing that he was not always the guy you fell in love with—he began to do and say mean and hurtful things. Every relationship goes through seasons of conflict and adversity, so it is hard for couples to know when they can work through the battle and when the relationship is toxic. You must know the difference between a poisonous partner and a healthy phase in your relationship.
You must be able to discern when the conflict can be resolved and when the relationship is dangerous.
Women tend to make either one of 2 bad decisions when their relationship is not meeting their needs – either they 1: stay in a toxic relationship, or 2: when things get tough, they run away from a good relationship. The reason they make the wrong decision is because they don’t know how to tell the difference between unhealthy behaviors and unacceptable behaviors in their personal relationship. Knowing how to tell the difference is the key to building strong, lasting, HEALTHY relationships.
Know the difference between unhealthy and unacceptable.
Before you can decide whether your relationship is worth the investment of your energy, you must know the difference between unhealthy and unacceptable. When you see the difference, your next steps become crystal clear! Most of the time, relationships are just in a funk that can be turned around. However, other times, the association is dangerous and needs to end. Your future depends on your ability to clearly see what you are getting into. If your relationship truly IS toxic, you need to get out.
There are several key indicators that you may be in a toxic relationship.
Once you know this, you can quickly evaluate your relationship and make the best decision for your future. If you do not take the time to assess your relationship, you are going to fall prey to making the wrong choice. Here are the telltale signs that you are in a toxic relationship:
1. You are afraid to upset him. If you are living in fear that something you will say or do will make your partner angry, this is a huge red flag. There is a difference between avoiding an argument or not wanting to hurt someone’s feelings and also being afraid of them. Think about WHY you don’t want to upset them. If you fear him abusing you, then get out.
2. You can’t make any decisions. If he is controlling your life, this is another big red flag. In toxic relationships, one partner dictates what the other person can and cannot do. Making decisions together is part of being in a healthy relationship, being controlled is not. You won’t always agree, but you should always have the ability to resolve issues and make decisions together.
3. You can’t have friends. Investing in other relationships is essential. If he is demanding that you give up all of your other friendships, you are in trouble. You need to know the difference between being concerned about the negative influence of specific friends in your life and your partner trying to isolate you from everyone else. In a healthy relationship, you will be accountable to each other and also seek to honor each other in every way—including your choice of friends. In a toxic relationship, your partner will isolate you away from people to further control and manipulate you.
4. Your friends and family voice concerns about your safety. People around you are more likely to see the destruction in your relationship before you do. Pay attention to what others are saying. They don’t have to LIKE your partner. If they are concerned for your safety, then it is time to evaluate your relationship and discover why they are worried.
5. You are not allowed to be successful. If your partner is getting you fired from your job, stopping you from furthering your education, or keeping you from finding a job, then you need to take a giant step back.
If you think you are in a toxic relationship, you need to put some distance between you and your partner. Then, evaluate the course you are on with him. Now, you can decide whether you are in an adversarial stage, or if the relationship is dangerous. If it is dangerous—get out and get help.
I am rooting for you!