Recognizing Toxic Relationships

Recognizing Toxic Relationships

Toxic relationships come in all different packages. They can be romantic relationships, relationships with family members, and even friendships. I’ve had them all, and now I’ve learned how to know a relationship is toxic.

My wellbeing was severely damaged by the toxic relationships in my life before I ever knew they were toxic.

My wellbeing was severely damaged by the toxic relationships in my life before I ever knew they were toxic.

How to Know a Relationship is Toxic – Pay Attention to the Way People Treat You

It’s so easy to get caught up in the day-to-day that we stop really noticing how people are treating us throughout that day-to-day routine, particularly if a behavior has been going on for a long time.

There are some behaviors though, that are important to take notice of, and give us the hints we need to know a relationship is toxic.

Hurtful Comments on a Regular Basis

Joking around is one thing, but both people need to think it’s funny. I’m not an overly-sensitive person, and I’ve found myself in relationships where extremely hurtful things were said to me regularly under the safety net of “Oh, I was just kidding!”

Examples of some of these comments include:

  • “You need to lose weight. You look pregnant in that picture.”
  • “I like having you around because you’re the fat friend. You make me look good.”
  • “Remember when you said that really dumb thing 5 years ago? HAHAHA!!”

This isn’t acceptable behavior, particularly coming from someone you love.

Expectation That You Will Put in All the Work

Relationships are not one-sided. There shouldn’t be one person who always picks up the phone and calls, or one person who always says “I love you,” or one person who always does the chores.

If someone who never calls you is suddenly angry because you haven’t called in a while, it’s okay to remind them that their phone dials out, too.


Have you ever had a person in your life who never wanted to share you, or even meet any of your friends?

This is not normal behavior.

Pay attention to what is going on. If this person doesn’t want to meet others because their schedule doesn’t match up, or they’re shy, that’s one thing. But, if they regularly refuse your ideas to invite others along, or to meet another important person in your life; if they seem to isolate you and try to keep you to themselves, something isn’t right.

Are Other People Giving Hints That They Know the Relationship is Toxic?

It’s okay to take notice when other people see your interactions with this person and comment on the hurtful or unhealthy behaviors. Don’t make excuses, take the criticism and vet it out. Check to see if there is any merit to what they are saying.

Even if it Hurts Now, Ending it is Best in the Long Run

If you’ve found yourself in a toxic relationship, you may need to consider ending that relationship for your own health and wellbeing.

With the help of a good counselor, you can make the right decision.

Know a Relationship is Toxic Already? Always Put Yourself First

In the end, what matters most in your life is your own wellbeing. You can’t fix someone who’s broken, and you shouldn’t have to. Continuing to submit yourself to a damaging, one-sided relationship, no matter how good the fleeting good moments are, is only going to break you, too.

The best action I ever took was seeking help through counseling when I finally took a look at my life and realized something wasn’t right. If you have concerns about a relationship in your life, don’t hesitate to get in touch with a counselor, who can help you to know if the relationship is toxic or not.

Find out whether your employer offers an employee assistance program, and if so, go through them. Otherwise, take a look at your insurance provider’s website and find a counselor who contracts with them. Get the help you need so you can take control back over and start enjoying your own Healthy Motivated Life.

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My wellbeing was severely damaged by the toxic relationships in my life before I ever knew they were toxic.

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