How to Know if Your Relationship is Toxic?

A man yells at a woman.

Some specific problems like divorce, relationship toxicity, and abuse have become a growing problem today. And this is because a lot of people sometimes choose to ignore the red flags in a relationship. Although indeed, life is not perfect, and many humans are a work in progress, there is, however, a difference between a toxic relationship and a relationship that needs extra effort.

This article tells all you should know about a toxic relationship, giving easy signs for you to be able to discern if you're in one.

What Is a Toxic Relationship?

According to the psychology expert Lillian Glass, a toxic relationship is any relationship between two people in which conflict exists continuously, individuals do not support each other, one seeks to undermine the other, and there is an absence of respect and cohesiveness.

A mother screams at her daughter.

Toxicity in a relationship is characterized by toxic traits and behaviors that consistently inflict emotional, physical, and mental damage to one party. While there are ups and downs in every relationship, toxic ones are mainly composed of downs. They are draining, displeasing, and the victims of such a relationship are depressed most of the time.

A healthy relationship exhibits mutual caring, respect, compassion, love, and constant support. On the contrary, toxic relationship signs are a completely different thing. Keep in mind that an unhealthy relationship doesn't necessarily have to be romantic. It could be a friendly, familial, or professional relationship as well.

Signs of a Toxic Relationship

Depending on the nature of your relationship, it can be challenging for you to notice the red flags. Sometimes, people are so blinded by their love or respect for the second party that they are still oblivious to the changes and differences in attitude. The list below should make it easy for you, as it contains some toxic signs you would recognize in yourself or the second party.

1. Manipulation

A relationship should not be manipulative, as it is never an unhealthy trait. Manipulation or emotional manipulation uses devious means to control others, in this case, one’s partner. Emotional manipulators in a relationship constantly disrespect moral principles, deceive and take advantage of their partners.

A couple in a toxic relationship is quarreling.

2. Passive aggression

This particular kind of toxic trait involves expressing discontent with one's partner without discussing the issue with them. Talking about problems is one way to solve them; sulking and never communicating is not. A toxic partner will never communicate and would always exhibit passive aggression like sabotaging your efforts, purposely doing things to upset you, and inconvenience you.

3. Difficulty managing their anger

This here is what often leads to abuse in many relationships today — a partner who is unable to control their anger resort to physical and emotional abuse. Someone who cannot manage their anger will make you constantly feel on edge at all times, walking on eggshells whenever they are around you. Insincere apologies usually accompany each episode, and the cycle never stops.

List of Toxic Traits

Here are some other toxic traits lists that you should never ignore in a relationship:

  • Dishonesty;
  • People who make you feel bad about yourself;
  • Constant negativity;
  • Lack of care and love;
  • Self-centeredness;
  • An Unhealthy urge for control;
  • Ignoring your needs.

How To Get Out of a Toxic Relationship

A quarrel between two girlfriends.

If any of the red flags look familiar to you, then it's time to do something about it. The first step would be to talk to someone; it could be a good therapist who can help some family members and friends. That would help lift the weight off your shoulders and make you feel much lighter.

After this has been done, then you can proceed to talk to your partner about the issue. That's mainly to give them the benefits of the doubt. If they are willing to change, you both can proceed to a therapist for proper resolutions.

In most cases, however, most toxic partners do not change quickly, and the cycle doesn't stop. Suppose you find the same patterns repeating themselves over and over again. Then it would help if you considered getting out of the relationship.

Ending toxic relationships is the best way to get out of them. Although moving on might be a lot difficult, you would be moving out of something poisonous and into something better and beautiful.


Lastly, toxic relationships can do a lot of damage to your mental, physical and emotional health. Learning to read the signs and taking appropriate actions are the best ways to look out for yourself and breed healthier relationships.

If you have found this blog helpful, please stay tuned for more quality and quick updates on new information.


What is a toxic person?

A toxic person is anyone whose attitude adds some tinge of negativity to other people’s lives. Toxic people act in ways that don't seem pleasant and constantly upset others in all they do.

Can a toxic relationship be saved?

A toxic relationship can only be saved if the toxic partner is willing and ready to change. There must be a certain degree of willingness to be a better person before the relationship can be saved.

How to leave a toxic relationship?

Leaving a toxic relationship can only be done by ending the relationship. Dealing with the traumas of the relationship can only be easier if the victim is ready to leave and move into better things.

How do you tell if you're in a toxic relationship?

Here are some common signs that you may be in a toxic relationship: 1. You're always walking on eggshells. 2. You're constantly being criticized. 3. You feel like you can't be yourself.

When should you quit a relationship?

If you're in a toxic relationship, there's no shame in admitting it's not working. The sooner you end the relationship, the better.

What does a toxic person do in a relationship?

A toxic person will try to control, undermine, and gaslight you. They may also try to manipulate or hurt you emotionally.

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