What to Do if You Find Yourself in a Toxic Relationship

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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.

Signs He’s Not over His Ex

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Signs He’s Not over His Ex

Guys are usually pretty easy to read. The trouble comes when we are in denial about a relationship. Or when we’re so caught up in how it makes us feel we don’t take a good, hard look at who this is all pointed toward. There are some clear signs when a guy isn’t over his ex. Lots of girls choose not to notice it. Others keep dismissing these or other bad behaviors. It comes from a low self-esteem, needing validation or being so wrapped up in the feelings of love that we forget ourselves. But it’s that intuition you really need to listen to. Intuition is other parts of your brain, speaking from experience telling you that something is not right here. Listen to that inner voice and ask your friends what they seriously think should things progress and they get to meet him. Take things to heart and understand what they mean from his point of view. First, consider how he broke up with his ex. Was there closure there? Or did he feel like things were left unsettled? If he has told you all about her, how much does he talk about her? If you have spent hours listening to things about her or their relationship he clearly isn’t over her.

What kinds of things does he say about her? If he still compliments her for certain things, or talks about what he brought to the relationship, he may just have a hard time letting things go. If he’s over complimenting her than he probably wants to get back with her. Then there are those guys who drone on and on about what a heartless monster his ex was. He is clearly jaded by the whole thing. But the fact that he can’t stop focusing means two things. One, he’s not focusing on you as he should. Number two is that he must have really loved her, if she hurt him so badly. That said, how long ago was this relationship? If it wasn’t long ago or he hasn’t dated since, you might be the rebound. How does that make you feel? If you are okay with that then simply ask him to tone it down about his ex. But if it drives you crazy and you don’t think you are getting the attention you deserve, why not cut your ties and sail on? You aren’t getting what you want out of this relationship. And who wants to hear some guy drone on about his ex all the time? If his ex broke it off or if she cheated on him, you should turn around and walk the other way. If she left him he may still be pining for her. You are just a way to make him feel better. The same is true if she cheated on him, plus he may have trust issues due to this. It’s better to let this one go. For more advice on this topic read, Dating the Divorced Man: Sort Through the Baggage to Decide if He’s Right for You by Christie Hartman.

Reasons you May be Single

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Reasons you May be Single

Some people are single because they want to be. That is a perfectly valid reason. They are at a time in their life where they don’t want a relationship. Others are single due to some trauma. Perhaps they got out of a serious relationship or dated a lot but clicked with no one. But if you’re over thirty and wondering why you may be single, perhaps there are some underlying reasons you haven’t considered. Of course, we’ve all dated terrible people. But we also have our own baggage we bring to relationships. We often don’t want to face what problems we bring. However, they can help you. The truth is love is a category that deep within has the seeds of personal growth. You’ll find that if you do have one of the following problems, unblocking the clog will only improve yourself, your love life, even perhaps your career or future prospects. For instance, due to bad relationships or other past traumas, some of us put up walls. But those defenses have their negative problems, such as making you emotionally unavailable, or have trouble being vulnerable and thus suffering from a lack of intimacy. We can blame being single on others, but if your defenses are up you may not be as open as you think you are.

Those that have their defenses up don’t always pick the best partners. If they had parents who were standoffish or negligent they will pick someone who is aloof and distant. And what kind of relationship is that? It’s almost doomed to failure, or at least to be unfulfilling. A relationship can bring up feelings of insecurity, which can make you push a good partner; someone you fear is getting too close, away. Pushing this person away only allows for your negative self-image to continue unabated. It may make you less fearful in the short term. In the long term you will be picking the wrong partners and will not experience intimacy. Intimacy is a kind of openness and interconnectedness flowing between both partners. And if one or both partners’ fears becoming open, intimacy is not available. Some people who fear intimacy become picky and way too judgmental. They let a high set of standards be their wall to detract potential suitors and keep anyone they could be intimate with away. Low self-esteem can also get us to date the wrong people. Here the standards are too low. You convince yourself someone who is interested in you really isn’t, or won’t be for long. But only date people who aren’t emotionally available or are cold and distant, thinking that this is what you deserve. Dig deep. Look at your romantic history and see if there is a pattern. Talk to your close friends and confidants; they’ll know. And you’ll soon be on the way to insight, well-adjustment and a healthy love life. For more on this topic read, It’s Not You: 27 (Wrong) Reasons You’re Single by Sara Eckel.

Common Errors Women Make in Love

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So many times women of varying ages, backgrounds and lives make the same mistakes in love. Since relationships aren’t taught in schools, and it’s hard to listen to advice on love, especially if you’ve never experienced it yourself, lots of girls have to make their own mistakes in order to learn from them. The worst part is that many women keep making the same or similar mistakes over and over again. Others recognize trouble brewing in their friend’s love life but can’t see what’s about to come at them in theirs. Here are some common errors women make in love. If you have the wisdom and foresight to see these coming at you, your love life will go much more smoothly. First, don’t think you can change a man. It’s not going to happen. It’s so difficult, nearly impossible to change someone. Really, the only person we can change is ourselves. So if you are dating someone, see if they have drawbacks you can live with, even find endearing. But if your lover has a serious issue, you loving them will not make them change. It will only complicate your own life. Sometimes a woman will meet a man with a rocky romantic history. Perhaps he didn’t treat his ex very well. He’s been engaged and broke it off with three different women. Or he just jerked his ex around. Maybe he cheated on his wife with her, but she’s convinced he won’t cheat on her.

This is the next big mistake, the woman who thinks she’s the exception. Through her charm and unique powers she will convince him that he must treat her appropriately. Trouble is, you don’t know what hurts worse, when this illusion is shattered or when you come to the realization that he has done the same to you as he did the last woman and you should have seen it coming. Then there are the women who hear what they want to hear. They don’t really listen to the man. He may say he’s never met someone he was really compatible with, but if he did he’d love to get married. All she heard was he’d love to get married. But she didn’t hear the first part, which may speak to relationship problems in the past and his not owning up to his share of causing them. As Maya Angelou once said, “The first time someone shows you who they are, believe them”. But too many women get wrapped up in how they feel about this new relationship, and they want it so badly to work out that they ignore the warning signs. But these are the seeds to trepidation later on, and all of the problems could have been avoided if she listened with her ears open and her mind clear and really thought about what he said. Some women believe that marrying a man or having children with him will make him settle down. This does occur with some men, but assuming it will happen can be a costly mistake. The chance of being murdered by an abuser increases when a woman becomes pregnant, and the chances of infidelity rise due to marriage or pregnancy. For more on this topic be sure to pick up a copy of Eleven Dating Mistakes Women Make (And How To Correct Them) by Jonathan Bennett and David Bennett.

React Calmly to Your Lover’s Confession

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We all have a past. Like it or not, you have one and your lover has one, too. In that, if you want to grow closer, you will over time reveal your secrets, as will your partner. This building of trust and vulnerability is the path to intimacy, a relationship’s highest goal. So how you react to your sweetie’s unloading can make or break a relationship. You need to react calmly to your lover’s confession. But how can you keep yourself in control when at the moment you are about to hear one of their deepest, darkest secrets your heart is pounding at a mile a minute? Certainly, revealing the skeleton’s in one’s closet is not easy. It shows a lot of trust and commitment for them to tell you. If you follow this advice, you’ll have the best outcome. First, pick a good, convenient time to discuss it. It should be when neither are in a rush or stressed out. Remember that no matter what they say, don’t get heated or upset. Take a step back and evaluate the information. Don’t try to dig for information that only concerns you. Instead, see it from your lover’s point of view. How would you feel if you were in their shoes? If the confession is about sex, don’t ask questions you don’t want to know the answers to.

Respect your partner’s privacy. Don’t push too hard for them to reveal details you really want to know. Instead, accept the confession gracefully. Allow them time to sort their feelings out. Confessing can be quite emotional. Give them a little space and let them feel comfortable. If they are worth your time, they will soon be giving you the details you want. If not, gently ask. If they get too defensive, back off and give them some space, then approach the subject again later. Don’t walk away from a lover’s confession. It can be difficult to hear what they have to say, but if you walk out on them they will shut down and it will damage the relationship, perhaps irreparably. You could make them feel hurt, guilty, or even angry. Don’t ask why they hadn’t told you earlier. Never use the information they confessed against them, say in a heated argument. This will put distance in the relationship, rather than bringing you two together. Perhaps they didn’t have the courage at the time to tell you, or never found the right moment. Don’t blame them for confessing. Invite confessions and openness into your relationship. Do not share the information your partner has confessed with anyone. Eventually it will get back to them and they will feel betrayed. By reacting to a confession the right way, you will strengthen the relationship and grow closer. For more trust-building tips, read the advice of Ashley Rosebloom in her book, Building Relationship Trust- 100 Quick Tips on How to Build, Maintain and Regain Trust in a Relationship.