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Do you feel like you’re in a destructive relationship but are just too frightened to find out for sure?
This post is a follow up to a report we recently published on whether someone should stick around in a relationship if their partner cheats on them.
This article looks at those signs of a destructive relationship we ignore because we choose too; we don’t want to “rock the boat”, or we are simply avoiding any conflict just for the sake of maintaining a good outward image to friends and family.
But is that really a healthy way to maintain a relationship?
I don’t think so but I can understand why people do it.
I’m just going to present some information and what you do with it is completely your decision.
Why Is Your Relationship Destructive?
If you are serious about regaining happiness then one of the first steps in improving your unhealthy relationship or marriage is identifying what’s bad in it.
You know what’s not working in your relationship so it’s up to you to identify it.
The worst thing you could do is to just let it go. It will only fester and get worse. Think about what your life would look like without having to deal with this issue or issues.
Until you confront these issues then nothing is going to change.
Admitting things are not right is a great start to perhaps getting things back on track and experiencing all the benefits being in a partnership can provide.
And for those doubters out there, yes, there are great benefits.
I remember one of the best pieces of advice I received just before I got married from a work colleague.
“Marriage is a great institution but only if you’re playing the team game”.
Doesn’t get much clearer than that.
And many problems in marriages and relationships stem from people playing as individuals.
There are obvious signs you’re in a destructive relationship like abuse – physical and mental being top of the list.
But they are obvious and if you’re still sticking around with this going on and you’re on the receiving end, well, it might be time to “fly the coup”.
9 Signs Of Destructive Relationships
So what are some of the not so obvious signs you’re relationship is toxic?
Here’s a shortlist:
- more than one family member or friend is telling you something is wrong
- your partner puts you down a lot in front of your family and friends
- your gut instinct tells you something is not right
- you’re treated like an after thought by your partner
- go to social outings alone a lot
- don’t trust your partner
- you feel more at peace when they are not around
- you’re the one paying all the bills
- you have to listen to their problems but you can’t get a word in about your own
There are more but these should give you some idea that maybe there are signs you’re relationship is unhealthy.
So what do you do? Leave?
Wait! Not so fast.
Yes, many people when they realize things are not right in a relationship do leave.
But what about if you’re married?
What if these issues are relatively new?
Is there something going on in your partner’s life or did they go through something traumatic and haven’t really been the same since?
Did something happen that affected both your lifestyles to some extent?
There are a whole host of questions that need to be answered and but for physical or mental abuse, it’s worth looking at whether these issues can be resolved.
Avoid These Destructive Signs In You’re Relationship
I want to talk a little about the first two reasons we listed because they often tie in together.
Firstly, more than one family member or friend is telling you something is wrong.
This is a strong clue that there is a problem which you are not prepared to face.
If one friend or family member is telling you something is not right in your relationship it may be easy to dismiss it.
If two or more are saying something is bad in your relationship, especially if it’s the same thing, then it may be time to listen.
Remember the old theory of when you are too close to something “you can’t see the forest for the trees”. That’s true.
Others may be seeing it from a 40 foot view and are seeing things you’re not. At least don’t dismiss them to quickly.
Yes, there’s a defense mechanism that rises in people when others question something or decisions they make in their lives.
The normal response is to defend what’s yours.
Even when what others are pointing out is true.
I understand that because you don’t want to admit something is wrong in your relationship especially when you have done your utmost to present a united front to others.
Don’t become this person and just consider the possibility they are telling the truth and just looking out for your best interests.
Don’t Put Up With This Destructive Relationship Sign
The second reason? Your partner puts you down a lot in front of your family and friends. They nitpick and criticize you at every opportunity.
If your partner has to make you the star of their array of jokes and is constantly making you look stupid, dumb or just plain nuts, ask yourself…
”Is this who I really am?”
Or if they are always putting you down no matter what you do and do it to make themselves look good by highlighting your deficiencies over and over, ask yourself is this who you really are?
The truth is, you may not think much of it at the time and consider it normal but if it’s something others notice and if the majority are seeing it, you should take notice.
It’s not conducive to maintaining a healthy union.
Put Some Healthy Back In Your Relationship
Getting nitpicked and criticized constantly behind closed doors is one thing.
Getting nitpicked and criticized constantly when you’re among family and friends is something you shouldn’t have to put up with.
This is destructive relationship behavior you need to “nip in the bud”. And quickly!
So what do you do? Simple, talk to your partner.
Sure, they might get defensive but hold your ground. If they’re not prepared to treat you like an equal then really, what’s the point.
An unhealthy relationship kills any nourishment a couple needs to remain a cohesive unit.
When toxicity enters a relationship, it’s like an acid that gradually eats away and destroys any healthy aspects of it.
Stress, lack of self esteem and worst of all, resentment will eventually set it. That’s not a good place to be.
So, in a nutshell, the ability to stop the unhealthy aspects in your relationship right now could very well be in your court.
At least ask your partner to make time for a good heart to heart discussion about what’s going on.
You never know.