HOW TO MANAGE A TOXIC RELATIONSHIP
Relationships are crucial as they are the building block of any society or nation. Relationships could be for various reasons, like companionship and procreation as in the case of marriage, proper care, training and upbringing as in the case of the parent-child relationship, friendships etc.
While some go into relationships for positive reasons, others may have some negative and unhealthy reasons for venturing into relationships. In all these, one thing that stands out is that being in a relationship is not easy. It involves a lot of time, commitment, sacrifices, tolerance, and many other virtues.
Sadly, some persons go into relationships without these virtues, others have some of them, and another percentage have tried to live out these virtues, yet things just don’t work for them. Relationships such as these are said to have degenerated to being toxic. Therefore, I will use this article to explain toxic relationships and managerial strategies.
What Is A Toxic Relationship?
A toxic relationship is one in which one or all of the members in the relationship feel inconvenienced, attacked, or misunderstood. It could also be defined as a relationship where the members’ physical, emotional, and psychological well-being is threatened. Toxic relationships are more frequently observed in families, among friends, as well as workspaces. Also, some individuals could generally be toxic due to the exhibit’s behaviours like constantly trying to justify the rightness of their actions, giving unnecessary remarks, or constantly complaining.
Toxicity could also be a result of some factors. It is either the toxic person doesn’t know better ways to table issues, or they don’t know the implication of their toxicity on the physical and emotional health of their victim, or their upbringing was very violent and abnormal, thereby making violence their way of life.
Therefore, as one that is in a relationship, it is incumbent on you to examine and evaluate your relationship. Here are some things to look out for:
- Having a feeling of danger or depression after a conversation with your partner.
- When your presence doesn’t naturally bring happiness to them. Hence you keep forcing or teasing them to smile and cheer up.
- They never accept their fault or even in cases where they know the truth; they find a way always to make things your fault.
- When you are constantly being disrespected or embarrassed about things you never thought of.
- When you are not valued, and your contributions or opinions don’t matter to them.
How To Manage A Toxic Relationship
- Check out for ABCDs
The ABCD in this context refers to accusations, blame, criticisms, and demands. As people in a relationship, you watch out for these attitudes. If these attitudes become very frequent between you and your partner, draw their attention to it, and think of ways you could work together to reduce their occurrence.
If the ABCDs are not reducing in frequency, remind them once again of your earlier agreement. After this, keep calm and observe if they are more focused on the agreement or if they bring more ABCDs.
- Learn to speak up
In any healthy relationship, the persons involved should be free to speak their minds. A situation where you are afraid to speak your mind for fear of the other person’s reactions is something that calls for concern. In the same vein, not speaking your mind makes your partner feel their actions are okay. They won’t know that their action is heating you on the inside.
Sincerely, this may not be easy as it seems; yet, rather than always letting things go, think of when and how to bring up these issues. You don’t necessarily need to address it immediately because it may lead to an exchange of words. Therefore, observe your partner and speak to them before it gets too late.
- Be prepared to walk away
Toxic relationships are very difficult to manage. Therefore, in a situation where you need to speak up, you must develop a certain level of confidence. This confidence is your ability to leave the relationship if your partner refuses to change; after a series of reminders and persuasions. Without this confidence, you won’t be able to speak up due to fear and intimidation. You must be confident that your life would still be okay and comfortable without this particular toxic relationship.
- Seek professional help
You may have agreed to settle your disputes at the initial stage of your relationship without involving a third party. But in this case, where things have seemingly gone out of control, you need to employ the services of professionals. A mental health expert or a psychologist wouldn’t be a bad idea. These professionals counsel both of you and can as well ascertain the level of damage done to your relationship. They also assess and give their opinion on the compatibility of both of you.
- Be comfortable having uncomfortable conversations
Yes! Your relationship has degenerated to being toxic. Toxicity is not necessarily the end of a relationship; it only becomes the last bus stop when the duo doesn’t agree. In a toxic relationship, your conversations become very complicated. You also experience even more discomfort in trying to talk things out. Therefore, as people trying to resolve disputes, you both must be comfortable with the discomfort brought about by your resolution conversations. Having such conversations also enables you and your partner to strategize on better ways to resolve criticisms.
- Watch carefully and determine if your relationship can still work
This is the most critical period of managing your partner’s toxicity. It is critical because whatever decision you take after your observation could make you lose your life partner or save you from spending the rest of your life with the wrong person. Therefore carry out your final assessment and make your decision from the depth and consciousness of your mind. Another thing that may help you decide is if you perceive that the relationship will degenerate in the future to be more violent. You could do yourself and your partner a favour by calling it off.
Whatever the case is, there is no justification for being in a toxic relationship. There’s also no justification for physical, emotional, or psychological abuse.
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