What to Do if You Find Yourself in a Toxic Relationship

blame

What to Do if You Find Yourself in a Toxic Relationship

Are you in a toxic relationship? Sometimes it dawns on you all-of-a-sudden. At other times, you slowly come to realize that something is very wrong. If you aren’t sure, here are some signs. Is there a lack of respect in your relationship? Do you avoid one another and loathe the time you spend together? Does the atmosphere fill with negative energy whenever you are in the same room? Does the idea of spending time with your spouse or partner fill you with dread? Is there a lot of contempt and insults flying like knives whenever you are in a room together? If any of these sound familiar, then the relationship is toxic. Sometimes things get way off track, or something happened that the relationship is having difficulty recovering from, the death of a child perhaps or infidelity on the part of one or both partners. At other times, it’s the buildup of many unresolved problems that start to drive a wedge between the two. The more differences the further apart they are.

In a toxic relationship you can feel emotionally abused, neglected, manipulated, taken for granted, or deprived of a sex life. Your spouse or partner could have cleared out the joint account, disappeared for days on end or buffeted you with one juvenile remark after another. Whatever the situation, when you find yourself in a toxic relationship, where there is no way of resuscitating it and bringing it back to life, you have to find a way to extricate yourself as painlessly as possible, and that can be tricky. Though many relationships can be saved, in the case of one or both parties hurting each other repeatedly, a clean break is best. There are three easy steps that you can use to get out with as little discomfort as possible. First, have a clear understanding of why you want to leave. A charming lover can muddy the waters, confuse you, woo you back and make you forget, for a time, why exactly it was you were leaving. You need to have concrete examples you can hang onto when things get confusing. You can even make yourself a little slogan or mantra to remind yourself of why.

Make a clean break. Decide when you are moving out or when you are breaking up with them, do it and then close off all avenues of contact. You don’t want to get sucked back in again. Many feel vulnerable after a breakup. That means you may be more likely to be receptive to their charms. Also, seeing and hearing from them will keep those wounds fresh. You want to be given the chance to heal and move on. Unfriend them from your social media pages and erase them from your phone. It may seem drastic but it will also be effective. If you work with this person or see them regularly, keep distance. Be professional if not slightly cold and don’t slow down to chat when you see them in the hallway. Give them a polite nod, say hello and keep moving. Sooner or later they’ll get the message and will stop trying to get your attention. Feel your self-worth. It is when we feel bad about ourselves that we are the most vulnerable. When we feel good about ourselves, we usually won’t put up with foolishness. Don’t get sentimental about the relationship. Remember what they put you through and that you deserve better. For more advice read, Psychopath Free: Recovering from Emotionally Abusive Relationships with Narcissists, Sociopaths, & Other Toxic People by Peace.

How to be Patient in your Relationship

impatient-wife

One of the biggest problems couples have is being patient with one another. And in today’s world, where computers, smart phones and the internet have made our attention spans last near milliseconds, it’s even more difficult to conjure up the patience you need to have a healthy relationship. Most people think of patience as a trait you either have or you don’t. But the truth is, just like with everything else, the more you practice the better you’ll get at exercising patience. And if you do so, you will start to feel a calm and tranquility come over you. The first thing to do is to analyze what situations in your relationship make you impatient. Or if you are impatient by nature, what situations in general make you feel this way. If you are often on a tight schedule and hurrying your partner along, which they interpret as being rude or inconsiderate, consider why your schedule is so tight. If it’s just not a good time when this happens perhaps suggest to your sweetie that they wait until later to have a discussion with you about a certain topic, because at this day and time you can’t spend too much time listening, but would gladly do so at an hour when you are free. Otherwise, consider if you are taking on too much responsibility. Perhaps you need to invest more time in your relationship. They need time and care to grow, just like everything else.

What are the specific things that set you off? What does your romantic partner say or do that makes you feel impatient? Why is it so? It’s usually the real issues underlying these triggers that are hard to deal with. You may need to get to the heart of the matter as to why certain things make you want to move along. Look for the patterns. What is it that they are doing or what baggage have you brought to the relationship that makes you impatient? What do all the incidents of your impatience have in common? For one or two weeks keep a log and write down every time you feel anxious, frustrated, or impatient. You will start to notice your own patterns and what issues or situations make you feel impatient. You will start to find ways to cope with, mitigate or deal with these issues. You may even come to understand that situations are what they are, but it’s how you deal with them that changes things. If you learn to disassociate your feelings of impatience with your triggers, you won’t feel impatient any longer. Keep in mind what matters. See the big picture. Take a timeout if you feel you are getting too impatient and revisit the issue with your partner later. Don’t let impatience ruin your relationship. Instead, get control of what makes you impatient and learn strategies to cope. For more tips on how to improve your patience, read the advice of Marty Babits in his book, The Power of the Middle Ground: A Couple’s Guide to Renewing Your Relationship.