What are the Signs of a Toxic Relationship?

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Answered by: Sonja, An Expert in the Dating Tips Category
It's great that you are watching for signs of a toxic relationship. This means that you are responsible and proactive enough to change your life for the better. There are good men and women out there, but you first need to filter out mentally unhealthy people to make room for the good ones. Here is a list of nine telltale signs your partner may be wrong for you:

1. He shows up late for dates. Showing up late for appointments is not only disrespectful, it is also a sign they don’t care about you or the relationship. Maybe you reason that they have a chronic lateness problem, but do you really want to shack up with someone who can’t make it anywhere on time, ever? Think about going to the movies, catching a plane for vacation, and attending your future children’s piano recitals. Heck, will they make it to work on time or get fired and leave you scrambling to make ends meet?

2. She doesn’t listen to your concerns. If they don’t have time to listen to you and your concerns for the relationship, then they may not be as interested as you think. The world is full of people who know how to talk and listen. No one is the perfect communicator at all times, but do yourself a favor and find someone who cares to meet you at least halfway there.

3. His constant need for attention is one of the most obvious signs your relationship is toxic. Is your partner overly problematic and always expecting you to lick their wounds? Sure, being needed in a relationship is appealing in the beginning of a new romance. But do you really want to spend your life tending to their every need and ignoring your desires and possibly, your children’s? Instead of two children, you’ll now have three.

4. He is overly competitive with you. When you say something, do they compete instead of support you? A relationship is give and take, along with compromise. Competitiveness may be a sign of envy or dissatisfaction with themselves. A competitive work nature is fine as long as it doesn’t steal creativity and rub off on you and other family members.

5. He puts you down. Do they make negative comments about your ideas and accomplishments? This can be harmful to any relationship. Why is he focusing on what you’re doing wrong? The world is rough enough without your partner criticizing your every move. Besides, if they have time to watch and judge you, they’re not stimulating themselves enough. Boring!

6. Something’s always wrong. Do they always seem to be down on their luck or do they complain about what the world has done to them? Someone that is always negative or depressed may expect to you to pick up the pieces for them continuously. The problem is, when you offer suggestions on how to fix their issues, they reject solutions and criticize you for not being more sympathetic.

7. He lacks compassion. Do they talk of how compassionate they are, but don’t exhibit care for others? How does she treat a restaurant server? How does he treat his mother? They don’t need to adopt every dog at the shelter, but If someone lacks empathy for mom, chances are high that you’re equal or lower on the list.

8. He keeps secrets. One way we bond with others is by sharing our deepest secrets. If they won’t let you in, you can never expect to know them as well as you’d like. You may even face anguish if they share their most buried secret with someone else. Recognize the pattern of not being able to connect and share early.

9. She refuses to apologize. Not being able to say "I’m sorry" means that you will be taking the blame for everything. This can lead to feelings of guilt and depression and you may even lose your own self-confidence because of it. Owning up to mistakes and failures is part of learning. If your partner isn’t learning from their mistakes, will they ever become wise and fun to grow old with?

If you recognize any of these signs of a toxic relationship, you’ll need to distance yourself. Have you noticed that they always have something to say back when you try to speak your concerns? Stop trying. Whatever you do, don’t engage. Create boundaries and don’t allow them to cross over to your side. Soon they’ll become bored and will find someone else to pick on or may even recognize their need for self-development.

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