Although people tend to focus on the many positive aspects of healthy relationships, it’s also important to address the bad—especially when negative behavior turns into toxicity and abuse. Relationship abuse can come in a variety of forms. In addition to physical abuse, there’s also emotional and psychological abuse which may be harder to recognize. We’ve come up with a list of some major signs of an unhealthy relationship.
Feeling distanced from the people you care about as a result of your relationship is a red flag. Perhaps they make you feel completely dependent on them or guilty about spending time with others. Regardless of how they do it, your partner should never make you feel isolated from your family, friends, and other close relationships.
While jealousy is natural and unavoidable in certain circumstances, it can also be toxic depending on how you or your partner manage the emotion. Jealousy is especially harmful when used as an excuse to act possessive, aggressive, or controlling. In addition, excessive jealousy can reveal a lack of trust which is poison in any relationship.
Deflecting responsibility and blame
When it comes to playing the blame game, everyone loses. Immediately deflecting the blame when confronted with an issue prevents you and your partner from listening to each other and resolving the problem together. Whether they’re putting the blame back on you, their past experiences, or someone else, failure to take responsibility for their actions is a bad sign.
Excessive arguing shouldn’t be confused with passion. Even if the arguments seem insignificant, frequent little spats could hint at a deeper problem. If you find yourselves constantly raising your voices at one another, you may have some unresolved communication issues.
Trying to change each other
Treating each other like projects rather than people spells disaster. Trying to mold your partner into your version of a perfect person isn’t fair to either of you. While everyone has areas they can improve on, trying to change major aspects of one another is a sign that you aren’t compatible.
If you or someone you know is in a physically, emotionally, or psychologically abusive relationship, don’t be afraid to ask for help. Free and confidential resources, such as the National Domestic Violence hotline, can provide you with the help and support you need to regain control of your life.