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5 Tips to End the Toxic Relationship

5 Tips to End a Toxic Relationship Today, around 39 percent of relationships end in a divorce. When it comes to toxic relationships, divorce is often the best course of action.

Once you are in a toxic marriage or affair, it can ruin all aspects of your happiness and mental health. Unless you are smart enough to end this relationship right away, you can end up losing years of your life to a harmful person.

What Is a Toxic Relationship?

At its heart, a toxic relationship is a relationship where you do not feel loved and supported. The other person may demean or attack you. If a relationship generally makes you feel worse, it is considered a toxic relationship.

Marital affairs are toxic relationships because it is completely impossible to have an honest, trusting relationship when one person is cheating.

Unfortunately, toxic relationships are extremely common. Other than toxic marriages and affairs, you can find toxic relationships at work or at school.

Sometimes, relationships with family members and friends are also toxic. If you feel threatened physically, mentally or emotionally, you are not in a healthy partnership.

Bad and toxic relationships
Young couple quarreling outdoors. Bad and toxic relationships concept

Over the years, researchers have found that certain conditions and experiences can make you more likely to end up in a toxic relationship. If you have suffered from major depression, bipolar disorder or other mental illnesses, you are more likely to end up with a toxic partner.Likewise, a history of childhood trauma can make you more susceptible to toxic relationships.

While toxic relationships can harm anyone, they are more likely to affect certain types of people. Often, narcissists and controlling partners know how to find people who are more likely to put up with their bad behavior. They will deliberately manipulate you and demean you until they have broken you down completely.

The Types of Toxic Relationships

There are many different kinds of toxic relationships. Sometimes, this is a problem at work instead of in romantic relationships. While toxic relationships can be the fault of both partners, they can also be caused by one person. If someone constantly argues with you or makes critical remarks, you may be dealing with a toxic partner.

Unfortunately, some people do not realize how their behaviors affect the people around them. If they grew up in a toxic family, they may think that the way they act is normal. These cases are sad to deal with because the toxic person may never be able to break the cycle. As a result, they will never get to have happy, fulfilling relationships.

While some people merely do not understand how to have healthy relationships, other partners deliberately try to say rude or mean things. Even when you try to change the way you live, you may feel like you will never live up to their expectations. Unfortunately, you are probably right because no one will ever be exactly what they want.

There are many different types of toxic relationships. Each type can negatively impact your cardiovascular health, happiness and mental health. If you are in a toxic relationship, you may have encountered one of the following kinds of partners before.

People at Work

Co-workers and bosses can have a toxic influence on your life. If you are constantly dealing with a toxic co-worker, you may want to ask your boss for a different cubicle. You can also try reporting the person to your supervisor or ignoring them until they realize you are not interested in being around them.

Sociopaths and Narcissists

Experts think that up to 5 percent of people are narcissists. These individuals are self-centered people who have to put down other people in order to feel good about themselves. They may insult you or say mean things so that you feel worthless.

Narcissists and sociopaths want to feel superior to everyone they are around. Because of this, they can never admit when they are wrong. While some people are aware they are being rude and cruel, other narcissists do not have the capacity to understand how you feel. The only way to deal with a narcissist is to move on. You cannot change them, so you need to protect yourself from emotional abuse and end the relationship.

Friends and Family Members

It can be incredibly difficult to deal with a toxic family member. Unlike a romantic partner or a friend, you are essentially stuck with your family members. If you can, you should try to limit the amount of time you spend with toxic family members and friends. While you can also recommend that they go to therapy, they may not listen to your recommendation.

10 Sign of toxic relationship

What Are 10 Signs of a Toxic Relationship?

There are many signs you should watch out for when you begin a new relationship or partnership. As a general rule, your relationship should give you more happiness than sadness. If you are constantly feeling depressed or upset because of your relationship, it is probably a toxic partnership.

1. Your Self-esteem Drops

Toxic relationships tend to impact your self-esteem in a negative way. Often, your partner will demean or insult you. Each time you are insulted, it makes you feel like you can never measure up to their expectations. As a result, they are able to gradually whittle away at your confidence level.

This is especially common when you are in a marital affair. The guy knows he is a cheater, and he is also aware that you could leave him whenever you feel like it. His entire goal is to make you feel like you could never do better than him. The last thing he wants is for you to become confident enough to leave him.

2. A Great Deal of Time Is Spent Cheering Them Up

This kind of behavior is especially common among narcissists. When you are with a narcissist, the entire world seems to revolve around them. Because of this, you are responsible for their happiness and mental health. Instead of feeling supported in the relationship, you feel like all of your time is spent cheering them up.

3. You Do Not Feel Supported or Understood

Because you spend all of your time supporting your toxic partner, you do not feel understood or supported in the relationship. Even if you bring this up, your partner will try turning the tables and making it your fault. No matter what you do, you never seem to win. This is especially common in affairs because it is impossible to support someone while keeping them a secret.

4. You Give More Than You Get

Because you give more than you get, you tend to feel depleted all the time. It feels like you are not valued for your true contribution to the relationship. Instead, they take all of your energy and happiness without giving you anything in return.

5. You Have to Walk on Eggshells

Even when you want to come home and relax, you feel like you have to be on guard. Anything you say could set them off. Instead of enjoying your time together, you feel like you are constantly performing a role.

6. You Feel Disrespected

In a healthy partnership, both partners respect each other. They provide unconditional love and support. If your partner dismisses your ideas or demeans you, then they do not disrespect you. You will never be able to have a relationship as equals if your relationship is not based on mutual respect for one another.

7. You Are Always the Person Who Gets Blamed

When you are in a toxic relationship, it is never the other person’s fault. Even when they clearly did something wrong, they will try to turn things around so that it is your fault. Over time, this negative cycle can cause you to lose confidence in yourself.

8. You Feel Angry After Talking to Them

A toxic relationship can make you feel demeaned and disrespected. Unsurprisingly, these people will generally make you feel angry, depressed or exhausted after you talk to them. Instead of enjoying time with a friend or spouse, you dread every minute of being together.

9. You Make Each Other Worse

When you are in a healthy relationship, both partners will always bring out the best in each other. In a toxic relationship, you will only bring out the worst in each other. For instance, they may make you feel meaner or more competitive. In essence, you do not like who you are when you are together.

10. You Do Not Feel Safe

Often, toxic marriages and partnerships merely have a negative impact on your emotional and mental health. Unfortunately, some relationships can also harm your physical health as well. If you do not feel safe, you are in a toxic relationship.

Tips for Ending a Toxic Relationship

No one deserves to be in a toxic relationship. If you are in a toxic marriage, affair, friendship or partnership, you should end the relationship as quickly as possible. Otherwise, the relationship will eventually impact your long-term happiness and mental health.

While toxic friendships and work relationships are easy to end, it can be challenging to break up a toxic marriage. Often, people spend years investing energy and resources into their marriage.

When they finally realize the marriage needs to end, they already have houses, retirement accounts, cars and families to divide up. Because of this, many spouses will remain in bad relationships for years.

They do not want to divide up the world they have carefully built, but there is no other way forward.

ending toxic relationship
Know When to Walk Away

Sometimes, people have to end toxic relationships with married men or women. When you are in an affair with a married man, it is unlikely he will ever leave his partner. Each moment you spend with him will only increase your emotional attachment and make leaving even harder.

Whether you are in a bad marriage or a toxic relationship with a married man, there are a few things you can do to take charge of your life again. You deserve to have a relationship with someone who can love and support you unconditionally. By using the following five tips, you can take the first step in taking back your life.

1. Pay Attention to How They Behave

Previously, we covered the signs you are in a toxic relationship. For example, does your partner belittle or demean you? Do you feel like you give more than you get out of the relationship?

Most likely, you have already noticed signs that this relationship is not right for you. If you are in an illicit affair, you have probably seen subtle lies or gestures that show how he really feels. You should pay attention to your partner’s body language, words and actions. These details will tell you how he really thinks and feels about your relationship.

2. Remember That People Do Not Change

If you are in an affair, you should remember that people rarely change. When a relationship begins because someone is cheating, they will most likely continue to cheat. Even if he leaves his wife for you right now, he will turn around and do the same thing to you later on.

The same thing is true for any behavior. Your personality primarily develops before you turn 30 years old. While you will continue to learn and grow over the rest of your life, the main factors that make up your personality are already fairly stable by the age of 30.

This means your toxic marriage or harmful friendship is unlikely to change at any point. If your spouse does not respect you and deliberately tries to make you feel bad, he is unlikely to change that behavior. Instead of expecting the impossible, it is time to move on.

3. Surround Yourself With Positive People

Before you end the relationship, take some time to surround yourself with positive influences. Toxic people require huge amounts of energy and time. When you end the relationship, you will need to fill that time with other activities and people. In addition, it is easier to get over a relationship if you are able to stay busy with good friends and family members.

4. Make Reconnecting Impossible

Once the relationship is over, it should remain over. If you are lucky enough to get away from a toxic marriage or affair, you should run away and never look back. He may be unwilling to lose you, so you may need to block him from your social media.

Other than blocking him online, you should also block him from calling your phone. If you normally saw each other at a certain cafe or gym, avoid going there. You need to make it impossible for him to reach out to you again so that you can have a chance to heal and move on.

Toxic people are like energy vampires. They will refuse to move on because they need your love and support. Unless you cut them off, they will do everything they can to wheedle their way back into your life.

5. Stay Strong

Whether you were in a toxic affair or a bad marriage, you most likely developed a strong emotional attachment to the other person. Human beings are wired for emotional connections. It is only natural that you would feel pulled in his direction after you break up with each other.

No matter how much you want to reach out to him, you need to stay strong. Do not text him. If you text or call him again, you will never be able to get away from him again. It takes a great deal of strength to end a toxic relationship, but it is possible. Once you have managed to move past the relationship, you will be able to find happiness again.

What to Say When Ending a Toxic Relationship

Unfortunately, ending a toxic affair or relationship can be fairly difficult. Sometimes, people need help getting out of toxic relationships. If this is the case, you should ask your friends and family members for help. You can even talk to a therapist about the best way to approach your toxic partner.

In serious cases, you may need to document abusive behavior. Then, you can get a restraining order. There are many organizations that can help you escape physical abuse, so do not be afraid to reach out to them.

For most toxic affairs and relationships, the first step is talking to your partner. If you plan on continuing the relationship, you can suggest going to therapy together. No matter what your ultimate goal is, you should explain how you feel. Discuss the behaviors that keep getting repeated over and over again.

When talking to someone about difficult topics, it is generally better to focus on how you feel in response to specific behaviors. These conversations tend to go smoother if you can avoid making the other person feel defensive. Unfortunately, it is not always possible to avoid offending a toxic partner.

Once you have finished the conversation, you may want to ask friends and family members for help. Whether you are ending an affair or a long-term relationship, your partner is unlikely to take the news well. Your friends can offer you emotional support. They may also be able to help you find a new place to stay.

The most important thing is to cut off any communication with the toxic individual. Talking to them will stop you from healing. Additionally, narcissists and other toxic partners typically become enraged when they feel rejected.

By being around your toxic partner after the affair ends, you could end up putting yourself in harm’s way. Because of this, you should do everything you can to stop communicating with them.

Healing After the End of a Toxic Relationship

When you are in an affair, the other person knows how to demean you and make you feel unworthy of a healthy relationship. Your partner knows what he is doing. By making you feel unworthy, he is able to keep you in a toxic relationship.

Over time, you will have to work on healing. Because toxic affairs and relationships tend to hurt your self-esteem, you should focus on increasing your self-confidence. Try to find activities that make you feel better about yourself. For example, you may want to spend your time exercising or relaxing with your loved ones.

The best thing you can do is spend your time with positive influences. If you are still trying to rebuild human friendships after an affair ends, you can always spend time with animals instead. Pets are great for emotional support because they are naturally good at providing unconditional love and companionship.

You can also meet people by taking part in a new hobby or trying a different activity. Some people enroll in a class at their local community college. Other than helping you meet people, these activities are great for improving your self-esteem.

The most important thing is to move on. To avoid toxic relationships in the future, you should take some time to think about your personal boundaries. Your happiness should always come first. Ending a toxic relationship is the hardest part. Once it is over, you have the opportunity to create the relationship and lifestyle you deserve.

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Angela Doel

Angela M. Doel has researched and written about mental health problems that impact relationships, such as navigating divorce, rebuilding relationships, enhancing communication, and overcoming sex addiction. She published The Couples Communication Workbook: Therapeutic Homework Assignments to Foster Supportive Relationships (2020, Between Sessions Resources, Inc.).

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