10 clues to identifying a toxic relationship

What toxic behaviors are likely to cause the most harm? Below, married couples give us 10 habits they often spot at the heart of the most unhealthy relationships.

1. Partners spend their time criticizing each other

“In a toxic relationship, tension and criticism are always present. Partners feel that they can never do enough to please the other. To protect against criticism, they have to walk on eggshells. It is a behavior they inherited from their families. When we were raised by parents who spent their time criticizing each other And when we spent our childhood observing them, criticism became second nature, and this environment creates toxic patterns that repeat themselves in the next generation.” — Bonnie Ray Keenan, psychologist in Torrance, California.

2. They do not have their own identity

“A lack of your hobbies, interests, or opinions is a symptom of a very close relationship. This type of couple often experiences suspicion, and any idea of ​​separation (even if healthy) is seen as a threat. To relieve this anxiety, the couple fuses more, and the This situation leads to real drama within the relationship if there is a difference of opinion, the simple desire to spend time with colleagues after leaving the office can become a source of conflict. We also recognize here signs of an abusive relationship or a manipulative partner.” – Amy Cape, a couples and family therapist in San Antonio, Texas.

3. They have very few friends outside the couple

“Partners in a toxic relationship often have to hide certain aspects of their life relationships from their loved ones. This makes it more difficult for their friends to see. Jealous individuals and partner friends are often highly critical of their partner’s friends and they don’t like him or her or spend time with them.” Mary Land, a psychologist in Washington.

4. They set up barriers

“Avoiding communication and bonding with your partner can be a particularly dangerous habit, which will lead to feelings of isolation and loneliness. Communication has to go both ways: you can quickly fall into a disconnection mechanism that fuels aloof or evasive behaviors for both partners It is not easy to reveal your vulnerability When the other isn’t receptive, just as it’s hard to show empathy when he or she doesn’t communicate about your feelings.” – Alicia Clark, a Washington psychologist.

5. They cultivate an attitude of permanent opposition

“When we seek to identify each other’s faults rather than find a solution (or even listen to the other’s point of view), resolving the conflict is very complex. Each disagreement” adds to the previous disagreement and increases the chances of starting a new battle. When you feel like you’re not on the same side anymore, it affects all aspects of the relationship.” — Amy Cape.

6. Uncertainty about their place in the couple is a concern

“People who are highly emotionally dependent are more likely to enter into a toxic relationship. Such a person will worry about whether their partner loves them, or if they are going to leave them. This is a very fertile ground for trust issues or jealousy, and the arguments that go along with that. Those who have Such fears tend to stay in these unhealthy relationships, thus exacerbating their problems by clinging to each other and demanding too much attention.” – Maryland.

7. They don’t support each other

“If you make a couple, it is among other things that you make life more enjoyable. It is good to be able to count on someone in case of a hard blow. But it is also in these periods of difficulties that put the relationship on the line – by supporting the other in In the right time, we strengthen the bond between spouses.And in toxic relationships, on the contrary, both partners do not support each other. They do not step in to help each other when needed.This leads to a marriage culture of frustration, loneliness and bitterness in the end. Each one protects himself to avoid disappointment. Hope again. In the end, the one and the other stop hoping.” Bonnie Ray Keenan.

8. A partner who lacks confidence (or both)

“A lot of well-balanced people end up in toxic relationships. When a person feels disrespected, their self-esteem is damaged and they may end up taking on more than they should. If they lack confidence in themselves from the start, she will be more vulnerable and find it more difficult to admit That she deserves better than a very important partner.” – Maryland.

9. They try to control each other

“Couples whose partners try to exercise control over each other form unhappy and toxic relationships. The point of being an adult is to have the freedom to act as you please. In married couples in life, both partners must be able to rely on each other’s common sense. When they don’t have that Emphasis (and sometimes even when they have), a couple can make great efforts to control the behavior of the partner. Half. Instead of seeking to control the other, partners must learn to interact and negotiate.” – Bonnie Ray Keenan.

10. They blame the other

“When disagreements always start from the fault of your partner, you can get frustrated or entrapped. And when responsibility for problems is not shared and your partner is always at fault, it necessarily leads to resentment. Waiting for their partner to change and criticizing them not doing it quickly enough is toxic. If you think your problems are coming from your partner, then your relationship is on the wrong track.” Alicia Clark.

This article, originally published on US HuffPost, was translated by Laurane Tesson for Fast For Word.

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