What is that one thing that we all are looking for? People have materialistic aspirations and work towards accomplishing their goals, but it is not just wealth that takes centre stage in our lives; we pine for something much more substantial. The four-letter word L-O-V-E has undeniable significance because we are merely carbon-based machines leading our lives in a mechanised manner without love.
However, finding love is not easy and encounters with fleeting romance and flings only serve to fill the void temporarily while we continue to look for the elusive “one”. We all are looking for a person with whom we can share our inhibitions, someone who would accompany us during the most challenging times and share our good and bad days. So, what do we do? We open ourselves to people, take a leap of faith and let ourselves be vulnerable in front of that person.
Consequently, some lucky enough people might have their feelings reciprocated, so they go on to have a pleasant few years, then get married and live happily ever after(“Yeah right!!!, they wish”). But unfortunately, life is not as magical as the Disney princess movies; in reality, even after finding that “one true love”, people face issues; however, if both the persons in the relationship work to solve them, they succeed in maintaining the bond.
But some people are not as lucky as when they get into a relationship thinking,” he is such a great guy/girl, I am so in love with him/her,” which turns out to be an absolute nightmare. Therefore, let us look at some of the symptoms of a toxic relationship and why you should avoid it.
Lack of trust
You might have heard or read it a hundred times about how trust is the bedrock of any relationship; no matter how cliched it sounds, it signifies every relationship. Besides, a partner is someone with whom you share everything regarding life, career, and family, but if they do not trust you enough to share the same thing, it is hard to reciprocate. Moreover, when suspicion creeps into the relationship, matters worsen; the partner suspects your association with your friends.
Furthermore, a lack of trust creates insecurity and negative assumptions, which leads to further issues like controlling the partner’s actions. Similarly, it increases anxiety levels and affects the couple’s intimacy, wherein both become physically detached from each other.
Healthy communication is key to maintaining a close bonding between two persons, but when the interaction is riddled with yelling and name-calling incessantly, it embitters the relationship. Also, you might think that calling your partner funny names and yelling at each other is part of the relationship, but it stops being fun when it becomes constant and hurtful. On the contrary, frequent verbal jabs filled with angry slurring sometimes lead to throwing and breaking things.
Verbal altercation often gets physical when the quarrel exacerbates, and the partner uses their body to intimidate and dominate the situation physically. However, there are subtler signs of hostile communication that you might have encountered in the past, such as the silent treatment or playing the blame game where the partner blames you for everything. Similarly, miscommunication occurs when the partner constantly keeps interrupting and does not let you complete your sentence.
It is great to have a girlfriend or boyfriend who texts or calls you to inquire how your day was or how you are doing but imagine them calling now and then to check what you are upto and who you are going out with. Moreover, the behaviour intensifies when some people get over-possessive about their partners and try to control every aspect of their lives. For instance, they start telling their partners what is right for them and seclude their partners from loved ones and always accompany them when they are with others.
They put no effort
You might have heard that it is essential to give 50 – 50 in a relationship; well, the truth is, in a relationship, you and your partner need to give 100 per cent. Besides, there is a simple logic behind the fact.
When both the partners are dedicated to maintaining the relationship, they put in equal effort. Hence, one can’t say that they did more than the other as both are equal contributors.
However, when the partner consistently ignores your needs and puts their interests and aspirations first, it indicates their selfishness. Similarly, if you have always taken the initiative to plan a special event for the two of you and he kept avoiding or missing it, you need to take the clue.
Also, having a significantly unequal division of labour, responsibility or contribution to the relationship or household is a sign of a toxic relationship.
No time spent on the resolution of issues
Every relationship will have its issues. In a toxic relationship, nothing gets worked through because any conflict ends in an argument. There is no trust that the other person will have the capacity to deal with the issue in a way that is safe and preserves the connection. When this happens, needs get buried, and unmet needs will always feed resentment in a relationship.
Gradual falling out of love
We all have certain expectations from our partners; it is not about spending an enormous sum of money to buy an expensive gift or sponsoring an all-expense paid holiday. On the contrary, it is about taking time to spend some quality time with each other.
But if you are in a toxic relationship, they might ignore the connection, validation, appreciation, love, sex, and affection. Consequently, the emptiness of the unmet expectations lessens the attachment and widens the relationship gap. Also, your attempts to communicate your feelings, empty promises, accusations of neediness, and jealousy end in a fight.
Eventually, the communication gap between you two widens to the point where you rarely speak to each other. Besides, the love and longing you felt before are no longer there.
Feeling sad and troubled.
Being in love is one of the best feelings in the world; it might not be sunshine and flowers all time as people need to overcome the hurdles they encounter. However, a toxic relationship is the exact opposite, wherein you would feel hopeless. Also, you might feel something is weighing you down; you fall asleep feeling hollow and wake up feeling the same.
Moreover, the partner does little or nothing to make you feel better when he is the reason you are feeling sad and troubled.
So, what should you do?
Humans are social beings and crave companionship; everyone cannot be saints and aim for an ascetic life in seclusion. Hence we seek to find someone, but in desperation to find love, we must not settle for persons with problematic traits.
Also, it is understandable if you are in a toxic relationship for a long time but still can’t leave them(them). But, at the same time, you must consider that enduring a toxic person for a long time can affect your self-esteem, self-confidence and inner strength.