When Suzy*, not her real name, got married she imagined that everything she watched on telenovelas would be replayed in her marriage. Well, little did she know that her relationship would be totally different. After coming back home from her honeymoon things started to change.
The relationship was on a downward spiral. One year down the line her marriage was a nightmare. Her husband was a drank, abusive and irresponsible character.
Despite all the trouble she went through, she never shared her tribulations with anyone. She is in what the generation Z would term as a “toxic relationship”.
Suzy is one of the many women who are in toxic relationships. While a majority of women stay in such toxic marriages, many end up being emotionally abused.
A majority others are rescued from the violent marriages either by security operators or family members. But how can identify a toxic relationship?
Therapist indicate that if you are constantly feeling sad, angry, anxious in a relationship then you are in a toxic relationship. Therapist say such signs are red flags that need to be identified early.
Your partner has no friends other than you
If you find that you’re the only friend your partner has, it could be a red flag. Partners that discourage you from going out with your friends as well as having other interest other than them are considered to be toxic.
Your partner calls you names or criticises you often
You should always watch out for partners who attack you verbally and never see anything good in you. Denting your personality, values or making you feel like your physical appearance has an issue.
Your partner constantly texts you to check-in
If your person always calls to check-in, he is a controlling partner. Such traits would end up to include tracking and taking pictures just to know where you are. This is a red flag that needs to be dealt with early in the relationship.
Your friends or family hate your partner
Pay close attention to what your loved ones say about your partner. Therapists say a close family member can identify toxic traits that a person blinded by love can’t. Most often than not the family member has an objective perspective and they want you to be safe and happy.
It is not easy to leave a toxic relationship. People usually get stuck in relationships that are toxic thinking that their partners will change.
Therapists say relationships do not have to involve abuse for them to be considered toxic, all abusive relationships are toxic.
Abuse can manifest in different forms
– Physical abuse
– Financial abuse
– Emotional abuse
– Verbal abuse
– Sexual abuse or sexual coercion
10 Tips for leaving a toxic relationship
1. Build a Support System
The feelings you experience after a toxic breakup are similar to going through a break-up in a healthy relationship. You will feel sad, conflicted, lovesick, relieved, depressed, and more. Leaving a toxic relationship is even more challenging if you have been financially dependent on your ex. But don’t despair. make the transition easier for you.
2. Stay firm with your decision to leave
It’s called a break-up because it’s broken. If you’re at the point of ending the relationship, you have probably made attempts to get your partner to change their ways without success. If this is the case, you will need to remind yourself often that it is not your fault.
Even if an abusive or toxic ex changes their ways, it is likely due to the shock of the break-up. If you get back together, their chances of returning to their toxic behaviour are very high. Following through on leaving a toxic relationship will require being firm in your decision.
3. Cut off contact
It will be crucial for you to cut off contact with your ex once the relationship has ended.
When you decide to leave your partner, end any form of communication with them unless you share children and need to co-parent. If this is the case, only communicate about the children.
4. Know that you deserve better
Months or years of being verbally abused or told you will never find anyone better can wear a person down, and you might start to believe it.
But this is not true. You can always get a better person and ensure that you reaffirm this to yourself daily. Let “I deserve better,” become your daily mantra.
5. Seek professional help from a therapist
Confiding in friends and family or finding a therapist is also another great way of coping with a break up. Good therapy sessions will help you rebuild your sense of self-worth and address any safety issues. Therapy can help you regain confidence and became the person that you dream to become.
6. Keep a journal of your emotions
Expressive writing has been ranked by therapist as a good way of helping recover from a depressing relationship. The more you write, you will feel better, improve your immune system, improve your mood and lower your blood pressure.
7. Make a detailed plan
Make a plan of how you will deal with the transition. Start doing something interesting, go to school or get a new training in a field that you have always wanted to venture in. Also make clear plans on what Items you will move out with when you are ready to move.
8. Surround yourself with positivity
Once you decide to end the relationship, it is paramount to spend time with people who make you feel good.
Doing things that make you happy can also help you relieve some of the stress that you have. Some of the interesting things that you can do include treating yourself to your favourite meal, engage with your faith community, exercise, and do things that make you smile.
Such activities will go a long way in helping people going through relationship issues.
9. Express your feelings
It is critical to share with your partner why you have decided to leave him or her. Some partners can holder an in-person conversation comfortably, but if your partner is not emotionally mature writing down your feelings may be the best way to communicate.
10. Stick with your decision
After leaving it is normal to miss the person. You might be tempted to want the person back in your life. However, keep in mind of what you went through before making the decision. In the event you feel overwhelmed seek your support system to see you through the hard times and stay strong.