A harmful and toxic partner can be hard to spot. And although many of us can show symptoms of toxic behavior, no matter our gender, age or sexual preference, it’s important to know the difference between a controlling person and someone who is just occasionally jealous.
Psychology Today reports that toxic people can be stereotypical bullies, but can also be much harder to spot. It’s important to stay informed and to know the signs of toxic people and toxic relationships in order to terminate them or try to find some solution. Here are 4 signs that you’re in a toxic relationship:
Your partner uses guilt as a tool
Toxic partners can make their significant other feel very guilty over everyday things. And they can use this guilt later on as a way of winning arguments and getting what they want. This behavior is very common in toxic relationships, making victims feel bad for whatever they did and apologize over it, giving up their power.
You don’t have other meaningful relationships
Isolating you is an easy way for a toxic person to gain control of you, cutting you from your support network and making you feel like the most special and necessary relationship in your life is with them.
Your partner’s jealousy gets in the way of your life
Jealousy is a common behavior that most people have experienced. It should be managed since it can easily escalate into something harmful and toxic. Intense jealousy is scary, and should always be monitored, especially if it becomes a recurrent problem in your life.
You’re always being criticized
Constructive criticism is positive and helpful. Painful and mean criticism is not. It’s also a clear sign of a controlling person. The latter is usually constant and is sparked over little things, like appearance. These nit-picky, mean-spirited critiques can really harm your self-esteem and make you feel small and weak if you let them.
You find yourself avoiding fights
You should be able to have a voice in your relationship and not be afraid to speak up. If you find yourself controlling what you’re saying in order to avoid a fight, that usually means that your partner has succeeded in manipulating and controlling you.