Leaving a toxic relationship behind

Leaving a toxic relationship behind

Ending a toxic relationship is extremely complicated due to the addictive bonds. But you have to ask yourself a question: "If I have to forget myself in order to carry on this relationship, is it really worth continuing?"

Last update: April 08, 2022

How to leave a toxic relationship behind? This is a frequently asked question among people who are in an unhealthy relationship and don't know how to get out of it.

A toxic relationship destroys, limits and prevents you from recognizing yourself in your way of acting. People who are not directly involved and who observe as spectators cannot help but ask, “How can you still be with him / her? Can't you see that you only hurt yourself? Don't you realize what is happening? ".

Sometimes the answer to these questions is simple: the person suffering may be aware of what is happening to them or have doubts about it. In fact, it's not easy when the only thing we care about is our relationship. Or maybe we are aware of it, but we don't know how to get out of it.

Toxic relationships trap us and absorb all of our energy, for this reason it is difficult to make the decision to break up forever.

"Leaving a toxic relationship behind means removing the blindfold over time".

Characteristics of a toxic relationship

Given the difficulty of leaving a toxic relationship behind, we list some characteristic elements of this bond:

  • Feeling of not being heard, so we don't feel comfortable expressing emotions and thoughts freely.
  • Our needs and preferences are relegated to a second, third or fourth floor. Likewise, when we try to be taken into consideration, we are criticized and questioned.
  • Disrespect through verbal and / or non-verbal insults or threatening or intimidating behavior. Sometimes the partner criticizes the way we dress and does everything possible to minimize our merits and virtues.
  • Being afraid of abandonment. We are not sure of the relationship, we do not know if the partner will leave us at any moment.
  • Try to please your partner so that no conflict occurs or that he doesn't get angry about something we do or say.
  • Idealization of the relationship and the partner. It consists of holding on to the image of the person and the toxic relationship created in our mind. It is, however, a fictitious image, focused only on positive memories of the past while ignoring the negativity of the present. This prevents you from leaving the toxic relationship behind, even if it hurts.
  • Toxic people often try to exert some control over our behavior by using possessive jealousy and emotional blackmail. For example, “if you don't do what I want, I get angry”. Likewise, "if I don't do what the other wants, I feel guilty."
  • Social isolation. Those in a toxic relationship no longer interact in the same way with others, avoid contact so as not to anger the partner.
  • Feeling that you can't live without your partner is one of the main alarm bells. The toxic relationship creates a bond of dependence and ambivalence in which without the partner we don't know what to do.
  • Feeling weakness, contempt, little courage. Self-esteem is damaged and we tend to think that our partner is worth more than us, feeling grateful to have him around.

"Disturbing emotions and toxic relationships have been identified as risk factors that favor the onset of certain diseases."

-Daniel Goleman-

How can I leave a toxic relationship behind?

Zero contact

For Daniel Uruyal, zero contact is about moving away from the ex after the breakup so that you don't know anything about him / her and, conversely, he / she about us. Contact and communication must be completely interrupted. Avoiding social networks is also essential.

What is zero contact for? Zero contact is for healing emotional wounds It is used to take back one's life, recover contacts with friends and family and, above all, for strongly damaged self-esteem.

Also, by healing wounds and reconnecting with loved ones, we will likely take a different perspective to analyze events. When you leave a toxic relationship behind, you begin to see details that have been ignored up to now, whether intentionally or not.

Regain self-esteem

The zero contact method is essential to recover and heal damaged self-esteem. People immersed in a toxic relationship live on an illusory certainty: not being able to live without the other.

It is at this moment that questions arise such as: "who will take care of me?", "Who will love me since I am a mess?". Toxic relationships make us believe we don't deserve healthy love.

To leave behind a toxic relationship it is therefore essential to take care of the image we have of ourselves.

Surround yourself with those who make us feel good

For psychologist María Fornet, “a healthy relationship is one that adds and does not subtract: the one that makes us feel bigger, more listened to, more respected, more confident and calm, and not the other way around”.

We need to surround ourselves with people who enrich us, with which we can carry out important personal projects.

Likewise, enjoying a good amount of reinforcement outside of the relationship makes us stronger and more resistant to emotional dependence. Having a full and fulfilling life will be an obstacle to the proliferation of addictive bonds.

Protect emotional health to leave a toxic relationship behind

We cannot ignore our emotional health: toxic relationships cause guilt, confusion, shame and emotional exhaustion. All of these wounds take care, time and patience to heal. It is common to feel that we are progressing very slowly, that the pain is unbearable, that we will not get out of it.

Even if we don't see a way out of what we're going through, if we really want to, we can leave a toxic relationship behind. Remember that nothing lasts forever, not even pain.

Seeking professional help can help us end the relationship for good harmful, just as it is essential to surround ourselves with loved ones who will help us overcome the breakup.

“And once the storm is over, you won't remember how you did it, how you survived. You won't even be sure if the storm is really over. But one thing is certain: when you emerge from that storm, you will not be the same person who entered it. That's what the storm is about. "

-Haruki Murakamii-

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