Toxic relationships are common, but they can, at times, be hard to spot, particularly when you are in one. When you have been with someone for a long time, your view of what is normal and acceptable can change. What you may not have tolerated or deemed acceptable previously is now just part of your daily life. You may, from time to time, feel like something isn’t right but decide it’s simply your imagination or you are just having a bad day.
Although in some cases, abuse plays a part, many relationships are toxic simply because two people bring out the worst in each other. If you know what to look out for and what is and isn’t okay, it could make it easier for you to resolve and set you on the path to a happy and fulfilled life. Here are 3 ways to recognize a toxic relationship.
Listen to your gut
There is a lot to be said for gut instincts. That all too familiar knot in your stomach, or feeling sick of unease, should not be ignored. If your gut is telling you that your relationship is bad for you, chances are it is.
Instead of ignoring these feelings, consider them in detail and, if you feel safe to do so, speak to your partner. Tell him or her how you feel and see if there is a solution. Your gut is usually right, so don’t ignore it.
You are scared
If you are in an abusive or controlling relationship, it can be hard to leave. You may be scared of the consequences or feel that you have no-one to turn to. If this is the case, try to seek professional guidance and help. There are many institutions, such as women’s aid or victim support, that can help you.
Many victims of abuse suffer from long term post traumatic stress disorder and need counseling to help. PTSD treatment is widely available and can help heal the wounds caused as a result of abuse. It may take time to break free and find yourself again following an abusive relationship, but with time, self-care, and the right help, you can rebuild your life.
You don’t recognise yourself
This is a huge sign that something isn’t right. If you look in the mirror and no longer recognize the reflection of the person looking back at you, you must find the courage to do something about it. A toxic relationship can cause a lack of confidence, extreme lethargy, and can make you feel overly emotional.
In some cases, you may even feel like you are losing your mind. If you used to be bubbly and had a zest for life but no longer feel like anything matters, it could be time to leave. If you would rather hide under the duvet than see what the day ahead may bring, you need to evaluate your relationship immediately. Life is too short to be wasted, so instead of resigning yourself to a life of unhappiness, grasp it with both hands and find yourself again.