A toxic relationship is a very unhealthy one. It often leaves people feeling worthless and insecure. These types of relationships can be so destructive and they can severely damage a person’s self-esteem.
A toxic relationship causes people to question everything about themselves. They find themselves doubting everything they do and feel and consequently they are unable to relax and be themselves. In addition to this they spend more time worrying about the other person and about what is going on for them, rather then focusing on themselves.
This can lead to people feeling very lost, and struggling to express the things that are important to them. It is hard for them to get there needs met or to think about themselves.
Relationship doesn’t only mean a romantic or intimate one. While people can have toxic relationships with their partners, they can also have them with their friends and family members. It is really important to take stock and actually look at the relationships in your lives. In order to evaluate who in your life makes you feel good about yourself, and who in your life causes you pain and heartache.
Pain and heartache doesn’t only come from the obvious things such as physical or emotional abuse. Toxic relationships can also be a lot more subtle and there can be other signs that you are in one.
A toxic relationship is one where you never feel that you are good enough. The person that you are in this relationship with will often put you down, laugh at you or make jokes about your personality or the things that you do. This can all be done in jest, but it is a way of putting you down and making you feel inadequate. The way that they speak to you can leave you feeling paranoid and judged. The relationship can also leave you doubting yourself and questioning any decisions that you make in your life.
Another major sign of being in a toxic relationship is that you are never truly able to relax and be yourself around the person you are in the relationship with. If people feel unable to be open and also feel on edge when they are with someone, then this is a sure sign that the relationship is destructive for them.
This could mean that a person puts on a totally different persona when they are around this person – to such an extent that they don’t even recognise who they are (and nor do other people). They find themselves behaving in a way that isn’t them – just to connect to this person and to relate to them. They may even start questioning the things they normally do or believe in, finding themselves thinking that this person is always right.
Other signs of a toxic relationship are when a person always makes everything about them. If they permanently focus on what they want and they need, and never think about what you want and you need, then this is a definite sign of a toxic relationship. Perhaps they get envious or jealous when things go well for you, or they can’t handle it when you are in a happy or good place.
If a person tries to bring you down, if they question what is good for you, or if they mock the things that make you happy, then these are all definite signs that you are in a toxic relationship. A relationship that is destructive and brings you down can impact on your self-esteem, your confidence, as well as your physical and mental wellbeing. It can bring you down, and make you feel very lost and low.
A toxic relationship doesn’t allow you to grow and develop. It doesn’t enable you to move forward or to invite positivity into your life. Instead it pulls you down, and holds you back. People often have a sense of feeling stuck, and disempowered. And they may also doubt their own capabilities or decision making.
All of the above outlines relationships that are abusive, negative, unhealthy and destructive. If you can recognise yourself in a relationship like this, then please be aware of the damage that this can be doing to you and your life.
If you are aware of a relationship that tries to hold you back that bring you down, that makes you doubt who you are or if you know that you’re in a relationship that causes you pain or stress, then maybe it is time to question things and make some positive changes.
Below are a list of things that can really help –
- Putting some space between you and this person is the first step to making a change in your life.
- Talking about the impact they have on you to others can also help.
- Be mindful of how you feel when your around them and how you feel when your not.
- Write things down to help you can clarity – this way you can look back at the things they have said and done.
- Become more aware of the damage that they do – awareness is the first step towards active change.
- Gain insight into who you really are.
- Learn more about your identity.
- Spend time doing the things that you love.
- Increasing your self confidence and self-esteem. The better you feel about yourself the more strength you will have.
- Surround yourself with people that make you feel good – those that you laugh with, smile with, feel at ease with, talk openly with etc
- Finally start counselling if you can.
Counselling can really help with all of this and it enables people to break destructive patterns. It also helps them to value who they are, and to believe in themselves. It gives people the opportunity to start to follow their dreams, to recognise what their hopes are and to be aware of when someone is trying to pull them down or put them down.
Counselling allows people to focus on what it is that they want or need, and to make positive changes in their life. Sometimes this can mean ending these toxic relationships and moving towards people that allow them to be themselves, and those that make them feel good about who they are. It enables people to start to value themselves more and to not allow these toxic relationships to destroy the good things in their lives.
Here at your counselling service we are dedicated to offering a great counselling service, and to enabling people to believe in who they are. Our therapists work hard to allow people to feel good enough and to ensure that they don’t let other people (and their negativity) bring them down.