Toxicity can infiltrate relationships in various forms, some being more apparent than others. While certain behaviors, such as overt physical or emotional abuse are clear indicators of a toxic relationship, other subtler signs can be commonly missed.
So how can you tell if your relationship is becoming toxic?
While no relationship is perfect, these five behaviors are some red flags, which could indicate a need to re-examine your relationship.
It’s important to be mindful of whether your partner is often blaming or accusing you for their shortcomings. For instance, are they often unwilling to accept responsibility for their actions? Do they blame you for their behavior by saying things like: “You didn’t remind me,” “It’s your fault” or “Why didn’t you let me know?”
Gaslighting is a form of psychological manipulation. If your partner frequently causes you to second-guess yourself, that is a form of psychological manipulation. This behavior causes you to view yourself as weak and you will likely begin to doubt your perception of reality. If this occurs long enough, you may begin to accept your partner’s reality as truth.
Discounting occurs if you share your concerns about your partner’s behavior and they dismiss those feelings. They might respond to your concerns by saying things like: “I didn’t mean it like that,” or “You’re too sensitive.” Their inability to accept responsibility for their actions and apologize will leave you feeling invalidated.
Your partner minimizes your interests, feelings, values, or profession and doesn’t recognize your accomplishments. You are often left feeling belittled and like you are “not enough.”
For instance, when discussing situations, your partner is always the victim. They will distort the scenario and will conclude that it was your behavior which resulted in them feeling hurt. They will discount your perspective, and may leave you feeling like the “bad guy.”
The above signs are not directly synonymous with emotional abuse, however they should be seen as warning signs that your relationship may be headed in an unhealthy direction.
The Bottom Line
If these warning signs resonate with you, it’s important to reach out for help and support from a friend, family member, or treatment professional.
It is important to know that your feelings and beliefs should be respected and acknowledged by your partner. If you feel unable or unsafe to share your feelings with your partner, it may be time to evaluate your relationship and whether it is fully meeting your needs.
Your partner may not always agree with you, but should always be willing to listen, be open for discussion, and available for emotional support.
Originally published at medium.com