Is your relationship draining you instead of fulfilling you? Are you feeling disconnected from your partner? Is your communication with your spouse more conflict-filled than kind? If so, your relationship could use a good detox. Toxic relationship can take its toll on your mental and physical health so identifying and taking measures to turn behaviors from toxic to tonic is vital to your well-being and happiness.
Ask yourself, “Am I in a toxic relationship?” “What are the symptoms of a toxic relationship?”
Here are 5 signs of a bad relationship that will help you identify what kind of relationship you share with your partner.
You no longer look forward to your couple-time
Evenings and weekends are spent either arguing or avoiding each other. You stay late at work just so you don’t have to come home and face each other, and you fill your weekends with activities and errands that serve as buffers so you don’t have to address the deeper issues that are going on between you.
You have the sense that your spouse doesn’t notice you. Any efforts you make to bring warmth and affection back into the toxic relationship seems to go in vain. They don’t notice a new hairstyle or dress. You work to put together a fantastic meal and he doesn’t acknowledge your efforts. He just inhales the food while watching the television.
You sense you are shutting down emotionally with him as well. Why share your thoughts and plans with someone who has a tendency to mock or denigrate them? This distancing leads to a temptation to find a partner with whom you feel a connection and a sense of being appreciated. Infidelity is likely to occur in a toxic relationship as it has become more disengaged and when toxic traits creep into the relationship.
Your discussions lead to nowhere
When you do manage to try and open up the conversation and address toxic issues, you meet with the same old responses. “You are always harping on me!”, or “I’m not going to change so you are just going to have to get used to it.” Things quickly escalate into name-calling, shouting, or someone stomping out of the room and refusing to engage in a toxic relationship.
You cannotcommunicate with each other in a respectful way and you no longer bother to try and work out the problems you are experiencing in your toxic relationship. This results in stressful levels of repressed anger building up inside of you, with physical manifestations such as anxiety, headaches, intestinal distress and muscle aches forming. You seem to always be going to the doctor who can’t find anything physically wrong with you.
If these situations sound familiar, it’s time to start detoxing your relationship. Here are some tips to get rid of the negative energy that has taken over your toxic relationship and replace it with healthier ways of living and loving. Here are 5 ways of how to get out of a toxic relationship:
Start by taking a break
“Is my relationship toxic?” Be sure about the kind of relationship you have.
If it is realistic, begin the relationship detox process by taking a break from each other. It doesn’t have to be a long one, a weekend apart will do. The goal is for you to be in a place where you can focus on your own well-being and give some serious thought to what you would like to see happen to this relationship.
Do you want to continue to invest in it? Are you willing to let go of old behaviors that may have been contributing to the toxic atmosphere? If yes, then:
Bring in the experts
Can a toxic relationship be fixed?
Yes, but once a certain level of toxicity has come into your relationship, it will be very difficult to detox without the help of atrained couples’ counselor. This is especially important if you are at the point where your attempts to communicate only lead to arguments or you are seeking answers to how to leave a toxic relationship. A trained and neutral third party will help guide the detox process in a solution-oriented way.
The therapist will provide you with the best tools to use with each other to encourage respectful and kind communication. This can include using “I” statements such as “I’m feeling underappreciated” rather than using finger-pointing statements such as “You make me feel underappreciated.”
Re-learn how to listen to each other
Another strategy for how to fix a toxic relationship is the art of active listening. Allow your partner the chance to voice their issues, uninterrupted. Then mirror back your understanding of what they said. “It sounds like you feel invisible because I’m not noticing all that you do for our family” is an example of how to actively listen. It’s an incredibly validating way to discuss hot-button issues and keeps the conversation grounded.
Apologize, forgive and reboot
Couples who seek to detox their relationship recognize the need to take responsibility for their part in the toxic buildup. They own it and apologize for it. Both partners invest in the practice of forgiveness which allows them to move forward in a purer, more loving relationship. And lastly, they reboot their toxic relationship each day by using the strategies they have learned. It helps keep their detoxed relationship clean, healthy, and life-enhancing.
In the video below, Richard Heart: Blockchain thought leader talks about how apology can save the relationship. He suggests being more sincere and taking steps to change the behaviour rather than throwing an unmeaningful apology.
Even the most toxic relationship can be renewed and take a healthy route if proper steps are taken and efforts from both the partners.
If you feel disconnected or frustrated about the state of your marriage but want to avoid separation and/or divorce, the marriage.com course meant for married couples is an excellent resource to help you overcome the most challenging aspects of being married.
Sylvia Smith loves to share insights on how couples can revitalize their love lives in and out of the bedroom. As a writer at Marriage.com, she is a big believer in living consciously and encourages couples to adopt this principle in their lives too. Sylvia believes that every couple can transform their relationship into a happier, healthier one by taking purposeful and wholehearted action.