Early Signs Of A Toxic Relationship, And Tips On How To Escape

Last updated by Katie M.

It's often tough for those in abusive relationships to face the music and admit that things aren't healthy. Controlling behaviors span from constant criticism, which makes victims feel drained, to domestic abuse. If any of these situations ring true to you, then it’s probably about time you gave your relationship some thought and started thinking about leaving the relationship and moving on. We're here to discuss what qualifies a relationship as toxic and what we need to do to put an end to the abuse. After all, it's time you made your future brighter and started focusing on your wellbeing.

Early Signs Of A Toxic Relationship, And Tips On How To Escape
Contents: 

Even if you’ve spent years with your partner, any relationship has the potential to veer off the normal and healthy route. If you believe you are in an emotionally abusive relationship, we're here to guide you through the next steps to take. Although it requires immense strength, we know you're capable of taking back control! Discover how you can get out of your toxic relationship and find happiness once again.

What is a toxic relationship?

A relationship should make you feel good about yourself, but if it makes you feel terrible and brings you down, then there’s a problem. Toxic relationships are characterized by manipulative partners who make you feel bad and who ultimately destroy your self-confidence and esteem. Relationships that are based on emotional abuse and controlling traits are unfortunately much more common than we think. Yes, the saying is true: love makes you blind. However, a relationship should not make you unhappy or negatively impact your mental health.

Yes, in a relationship, it is important to consider your partner's desires before making a decision, but it shouldn't be a one-way street. If you have to ask your man's permission to do something, and you feel like you're not free, this is a sign of a toxic or even abusive relationship.

>>> Check out how to get over an ex and discover if crying often is harmful.

What are the early signs of a toxic relationship? - 3 signs your relationship is unhealthy?

Although they often take time to come about and develop, when they finally do, they definitely hit hard. Here are some of the top signs you are in one:

1) You feel constantly put down

If your partner always seems to want to change you and is never really satisfied with you, then this is an essential sign that you need to break things off and walk away. Being put down by your toxic partner and made to feel bad or inadequate about your appearance is also a sign that things aren't healthy between you. When you can’t be yourself, it’s never a good sign. If your partner talks down to you and is always negative about you, it's to ruin your confidence in yourself. If this is the case, you need to get away from this relationship because you are being manipulated.

2) You feel isolated

If your partner seems to want to take you away from your friends and family, then the bad news is, your relationship isn’t one that will help you grow. If you're unable to see your loved ones without it sparking world war 3, because of a so-called 'lack of trust', red flags should appear. Indeed, him becoming jealous of your close friends and family should also set off alarm bells. In a healthy relationship, you manage to find a good balance between your relationship, your friends, and your family. You maintain an active social life, as this is very important to your well-being. If your partner doesn't let you see certain people or gives you the cold shoulder when you go out, there's a problem.

>>> Read up on why we get jealous in relationships and how to control it

3) You always fear disappointing your partner

If you constantly worry about disappointing him and are always anxious about not being able to live up to his demands, then there’s a problem. If you find yourself putting your partner’s wishes before your own, then there are definitely some deep-rooted issues that need to be addressed. Does your partner not like certain aspects of your personality or certain passions or interests? If the person you are with doesn't like you the way you are, you can be sure that they don't deserve you. 

Scared woman

>>> We think you might like; 10 Most common reasons for divorce

How to leave a toxic relationship - 3 essential steps to follow

1) Recognize that you’re the victim

You can only ignore obvious signs that you are the victim of manipulative abuse for so long. If you identify yourself in any of the signs evoked above, then you are in a toxic relationship and need to be aware of it.

2) Put an end to it for good and walk away

Whether you’re dating a manipulator, a narcissist pervert or a passive-aggressive person, the bottom line is your partner needs help. If your partner categorically refuses the option of getting help, then unfortunately, you need to end the relationship, and walk away. Putting yourself first is essential. Although walking out is tough, it needs to be done and will benefit you mutually.

3) Rebuild yourself gradually

After years of being under the control of a toxic partner, having the sentiment of losing part of yourself is completely normal. Developing affectionate dependence towards your partner is virtually inevitable, but know that you’ll eventually learn to love life once again!

What is a toxic partner like?

In a toxic relationship, the victim locks herself into a role so as not to arouse anger in the other person. She conforms to his expectations, even if it means leaving her own aside. She takes it upon herself not to titillate the other person's hyper-sensitivity and mood. Hobbies, hobbies, or personal skills are kept quiet. Thus, the victim is then frustrated and unable to express herself fully because she is terrified of her unstable partner and his reactions. A toxic partner will constantly spy on, accuse, and criticize the victim, as a way of increasing their insecurity and dependence. Plus, when only one person is involved in the relationship, the relationship quickly becomes unbalanced. One of the two people provides the relationship with the basic elements for it to continue.

Editor's advice: Start talking about your experiences

Realizing that we are in an unhealthy relationship that is indeed damaging to our self-esteem is definitely a difficult process to go through. When we've been under a manipulator's thumb for years, scenarios and certain behaviors often become normalized parts of the relationship. That being said, the first step to freeing yourself and reconnecting with whom you really are is talking.

 Stepping out of the silence and communicating with people you trust will help open your eyes to your situation and will no doubt give you the moral support you need to take the next steps. Sharing what you've been through will help you put things into perspective and could even be the key to convincing you that you deserve better. Once you start to realize what you've experienced, you'll never want to put yourself through it again, and this awakening will be extremely positive for your future love stories.

🤗 Understand yourself, accept yourself, be happy... Let’s do it here and now!

#BornToBeMe

Related content you might enjoy:

Article presented by Katie M.

Discover the world through my eyes.

Read our latest articles here:

Emotional Blocks

I feel like I run into walls a lot in my life and even get them stuck in my head! However, even if I manage to pick myself back up, some of them seem insurmountable. Feeling paralyzed by a situation or an experience is called an emotional block. Many of us encounter them in our lives because of a negative experience. They prevent us from living life to the full, from having balance, and from being truly happy. So how do we get rid of them? The good news is that we can jump over these walls. Here’s how.

I’m Always Angry, Why? What’s Behind It?

The pressure builds up quickly, and then suddenly you’re telling them where to get off. Anger washes over us like a wave, an uncontrollable tidal wave. Even though it sounds impressive, it’s normal to feel angry. Everyone experiences it. But where it becomes problematic is when it’s constant and violent. Why might we feel angry all the time? What’s behind it? When everything’s getting on top of us, we need to go back to the roots of our anger to get rid of it and live more serenely.

Somniloquy: Why Do Some People Talk In Their Sleep?

“You know you told me your life story last night?” Of course, telling your partner what you’ve been up to is pretty cool. Except if you do it in your sleep… Some people can talk in their sleep! So if you live on your own, no problem, but if you sleep with someone, it immediately becomes more annoying. Why do we talk in our sleep? Is it something that can disturb our sleep? What can we do to stop it?

Why Do I Feel Like Stay Home All The Time?

I like being and staying at home. It’s almost unthinkable to say that, having lived through a year of the pandemic and lockdowns, yet I’m one of those who doesn’t get bored at home. And I confess, I’m sometimes reluctant to leave the house. Blasphemy! Being a home bird is often perceived badly, but I’m ok with it, and I’m not as anti-social as it seems…

What's The Point In Getting Married Nowadays?

Now there’s a good question! Personally, I’d never dreamed of getting married, but all of that changed rather recently. The princess dress, the veil, the first dance, all that seemed a bit overwhelming for me. And yet, do you know what? I’ve been married for just over 3 years now. So, why did I make a U-turn on my opinion towards this commitment? The answer is; purely because of love.

Is It Time For You To Change Jobs? Will This Make Your Life Better?

I’m 30 years old and I can’t imagine myself doing the same job my whole life. Sometimes I dream of simple things like working with flowers. I keep this idea in the back of my head; becoming a florist would one day be a great adventure! Because yes, changing jobs isn’t impossible! Sometimes we get bored of our everyday routine, we don’t identify with what we do anymore, we no longer like our job, etc. So many reasons can lead to a career change!

6 Differences Between Being Self-Centered And Being A Narcissist

When it comes to mental health disorders, the parameters of each condition often seem blurry, and this explains why many of us have trouble identifying them. Plus, certain disorders frequently encompass similar symptoms and traits, making recognizing and therefore understanding them even more complicated. Let’s take being selfish and having a narcissistic personality disorder, for example. Because they overlap on such a huge scale, upon first glance, they do in fact seem indistinguishable to many of us. That being said, when you dig a little deeper, the differences do become more and more apparent.

How Do You Know A Narcissist Is Cheating?

Narcissism is wholly incompatible with healthy relationships, which goes some way in explaining why people with this personality disorder always believe the grass is greener elsewhere. Indeed, fidelity isn’t something they excel in and adds to their exhaustive list of weaknesses alongside their love of manipulation and dishonesty. However, they are so cunning and crafty that catching them out and confirming your intuitions is no easy feat. To make things easier for you, here are the 10 signs you need to look out for if you believe your narcissistic man is cheating on you.

10 Signs The Narcissist Discarding Phase Has Been Activated

The most important thing to understand when dealing with a narcissist is that their reign of terror won't last forever. Now, whilst their torment underway, it will no doubt be one of the most harrowing things you can mentally go through. However, when the abuser decides they've had enough of you, they'll halt their horrific abuse in a heartbeat and look for someone else. People with narcissistic personality disorders are constantly on the lookout for new prey and when they find someone who fills their criteria, they'll move into the discarding phase of their plan. After all, they aren't very eco-friendly, their motto is out with the old, in with the new!

8 Dangerous Mind Games That All Narcissists Play

People with narcissistic personality disorders love playing games because it reinforces their sense of control and validates their need to pull the strings. Now, the idea of playing games may seem fairly harmless and innocent, but the truth could be further away from the reality when these manipulative personalities are involved. Indeed, narcissists are always one step ahead of the rest of us, which makes it difficult to recognize when they are toying with people. So, to open your eyes to what they are truly capable of, discover the lengths they’ll go to, to remain on top.

Wengood's favorite tunes 🎵

How to detect a narcissist


"Be yourself; everyone else is already taken." 

- Oscar Wilde


How to soothe an anxiety attack