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Types of Toxic Relationships to Watch Out For

toxic relationships

Do you feel like you’re losing your identity or your peace of mind in a relationship? You may not realize this but you may be in a toxic relationship.

Toxic relationships are all around us.

Have you ever been in a relationship where you feel more stressed and tired rather than happy and glowing?

You may unknowingly be trapped in a relationship that’s leaving you drained and angry.

Toxic relationships come in many hues.

Sometimes, we date toxic people.

And at other times, we have friends and even family who are toxic for our lives.

[Read: 10 types of toxic friends you need to avoid]

What is a toxic relationship?

A toxic relationship is a relationship that’s detrimental to your life and existence.

When you enter a toxic relationship with a person who’s not an ideal match for you, you may actually end up losing yourself and becoming a person you wouldn’t be too happy to be.

Some people that we date fill our lives with happiness.

And toxic people just drain the happiness out of our lives.

Lovers with toxic personalities may not necessarily be bad people.

But when they impose their negative way of life on you, it could affect the way you look at life and destroy you from the inside.

The bad part about toxic relationships is that you can’t really recognize it at first.

But as time goes by, something about them starts to change and everything they do may start to frustrate you. [Read: Signs you’re falling out of love with your partner]

Of course, you won’t be able to blame them because they’d still appear to be the same person you fell in love with.

So what’s changed then?

The 15 types of toxic relationships

Toxic relationships are created in two circumstances, when you enter a relationship with someone who’s completely incompatible with your way of life, or when you enter a relationship with someone who’s just a really bad person.

There are many kinds of toxic lovers, but they all find their way into one of these types of toxic relationships.

So if you ever feel like you’re trapped in a bad relationship with one of these types of lovers, look for the exit door, because no matter how much you think you can change the relationship for the better, you just can’t. Well, unless your lover makes a conscious effort to become a more accommodating person. [Read: How to let go of a relationship that’s bad for you]

#1 Controlling relationships. Does your partner want to have a say in everything you do? Or do they like to know everything you’re doing, even if it means interrupting you aggressively to find out what you’re doing right that instant?

If you’re in a relationship where your partner behaves like the approver where everything you do has to pass through their scrutiny, you’re definitely in the middle of a toxic romance. [Read: 15 subtle signs that reveal a controlling partner]

#2 Jealous partners. Is your partner overly jealous when it comes to you spending time with your friends? Or do they constantly feel like you’re sharing a certain sexual chemistry with someone even if you have a happy laugh while chatting over the phone? A bit of jealousy can be cute. But when it affects your life, it’s definitely not good for you. [Read: How to make your jealous partner not-so-jealous]

#3 Bitchy lovers. Does your lover sit down with you and constantly nag about their bad days or whine about their problems until you feel like crawling under the couch or running away from them? Partners who find happiness only while complaining about their life can turn you into a negative person too.

#4 A negative thinking partner. A negative thinking partner is one of the worst of the lot. Does your partner think life is extremely unfair to them? Or do they only see the negative side to everything in their life? These kinds of partners will suck the happiness out of your life even before you realize it. [Read: Is negative thinking ruining your life?]

#5 Puts you down all the time. This is the “I told you so” kind of partner. Instead of helping you out, they always look for a way to make you feel like a dumb, spoilt child. Perhaps, they have issues in life or they just love feeling powerful by putting you down all the time.

#6 Cheating partner. Have you caught your partner cheating on you once? And then again? Some partners just can’t stay committed to one relationship, and there’s nothing you can do about it. If a partner doesn’t respect you or think you’re important enough, they’re bound to cheat on you constantly. [Read: 25 reasons behind why women cheat so easily]

#7 Lying lover. Some lovers just can’t help but lie all the time. You may know they’re lying, but you can’t prove it, can you? When you’re in a toxic relationship like this, you’d end up feeling more insecure and frustrated, and may even feel paranoid about the whole relationship, while your partner laughs and lies away all the time.

#8 Abusive partner. An abusive partner doesn’t always have to abuse you physically. At times, even vocal abuses can have the same impact. If you partner raises a hand at you or threatens you with abuses for any reason, don’t put up with it. The more you stay in a toxic relationship like that, the more you’d make your partner feel dominant over you.

#9 The blaming lover. Are you in a relationship with someone who constantly takes their frustrations out on you or blames you for their mistakes? You may think they’re acting childish, but your partner may genuinely think it’s your fault and may even get increasingly frustrated with you. The next time you get blamed for something you haven’t done, stand your ground. Or you’ll end up in a messy relationship where both of you hate each other. [Read: Top 20 reasons for divorce that most couples overlook]

#10 An extremely insecure partner. When you’re in a relationship with someone and are forced to spend most of your day away from them, a little bit of insecurity is inevitable, especially if you’re meeting good looking members of the opposite sex all the time.

But if your partner is extremely insecure and constantly needs tons of reassurance and proof of love from you, perhaps it’s time to have that talk. Or you’ll end up getting frustrated with your partner all the time.

#11 A demanding partner. Demanding partners expect the best from you, but yet they never return the favor. They constantly try to boss around you or tell you how lucky their friends are for having such understanding partners. Being in a relationship like this will make you feel helpless and depressed, because no matter what you do, you’ll never be good enough.

#12 Over the top perfectionists. Perfectionists are great people to be in a relationship with. But if you’re dating someone who’s obsessive about the way they want things in their life, it’ll always leave you frustrated. And obsessive people with a perfectionist streak in them will always find faults with you. Can you really live with someone like that?

#13 Narcissistic partners. Narcissistic partners are extremely materialistic and shallow. Your partner may love you, but they still treat you like an accessory. They feel embarrassed when you haven’t dressed your best when you step out together, and the whole world revolves around them, no matter what you do or say. Unless you like being treated like a doll, this relationship will definitely not help with your self esteem. [Read: 15 signs of a high maintenance woman]

#14 The competitive lover. Everything is a competition for these types of lovers. They may say they love you and they may even care about you. But they will never allow you to beat them at anything, be it a game or when it comes to earning more money. They’re sore losers and always want to be pampered. And most of all, they love seeing you fall in life so they can magnanimously help you back on your feet. [Read: 7 secret signs of a bad relationship]

#15 The manipulative partner. Does your partner constantly play with words or try to trick you into believing something by manipulating you? If you’re dating someone who tries to lie or manipulate you into getting things done their way all the time, perhaps it’s time you let them know you’re not that dumb to fall for such childish tricks. [Read: 9 relationship stages that all couples go through]

It’s not easy to recognize toxic relationships because there’s a bit of that toxic side in all our love lives. But if it ever crosses the thin line, either talk about it or get out of it!

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Natalia Avdeeva
Natalia Avdeeva
Natalia Avdeeva sometimes feels like she’s an 80-year-old woman trapped in a 29-year-old body. She loves buying makeup and ends up not wearing them most of th...
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14 thoughts on “Types of Toxic Relationships to Watch Out For”

  1. GUMA says:

    🙁 I recognize myself in 6-7 of these… Damn… Are there really people who are none of that?

  2. Liz says:

    For anyone thinking like GUMA, things on this list might be recognized in unhealthy relationships, for instance a controlling partner when they know their partner cheated on them, however this article is mostly pointing out the extremes in the behavior. A negative thinking person might be depressed from losing their job, that doesn’t mean they are toxic or need to get dumped, that is when a partner should help comfort them and help them get a new job. The extreme is the person who is always pessimistic no matter what. The article focuses on these extremes, not the small ordinary occurrences. Some times people get jealous, some times people get bossy. That does not make you toxic unless you carry it to the extreme constant state. I think the cheating and the physically/verbally/sexually abusive relationships are always toxic though, no matter what. Cheating can give you life long sexually transmitted diseases and abuse is never acceptable.

  3. Sim says:

    I am in this type of relationship. The trouble is I came from a broken family where my father left when I was 8 years old, I promised myself I would never do that to my kids.. I have 2 kids (1 & 2 years old) in this relationship and feel like I would be giving up on them if I left, plus my partner has 2 kids from a previous relationship (7 & 8 years old) and I have grown very close to them also, I treat them like my own. To go down the custody and child support road is something I really don’t want to contemplate.. I am hoping we can last till the kids leave home then I can pack my bags and leave also… I’m dreaming right?

  4. Drew05 says:

    I was in a relationship 3 years with a pyschopathic woman. I loved her but when the masked slipped and her true self was revealed it was over. She had all the symptoms of the female pyschopath. Unfortunately I didn’t see them until the relationship was over.I look at the relationship ending as me saving thousands of dollars and she is someone else’s problem now. At least I didn’t have the kid with her. Thank God. I am relieved. She will never change and all her relationships are doomed to fail. Female psychopaths do exist!!! I feel bad for her kids. .they don’t stand a chance in this world…she told me she couldn’t stand them. They are 9 and 6 years old. One has behavior problems and the other a learning disability. What a fantastic mom!!

  5. Jessica lain says:

    I’m in a relationship. I really love him and professes to love me. He can’t be a second away from me at home, he wants cuddles and kisses all the time, if he could he’d Velcro me to his chest. I’m a performer so I work the summer season, we met 3 months ago in December and so I haven’t really been away, only a couple of nights here and there and one night away. He has already shown his displeasure, the night away was a huge issue. He’s starting to get jealous of the guy I sing with, and he thinks if I have a hit song I’d leave him. He hit me the other day, he’s hurt my arm a few times lashing out or pulling me back in an argument. He is suffocating me, I know if I am busy putting the washing out or in the middle of song writing etc and I don’t stop immediately to kiss him and cuddle him he accuses me of not wanting him any more and denying him affection. He also calls me a spireful manipulative bitch if I point this out, apparently it’s putting him down and making him feel shit. I’m so exhausted! Even yesterday I had sun stroke after a long walk, I was sitting and he wanted me to sit somewhere else, as I didn’t come immediately we had a row, I was so dizzy and dehydrated I couldn’t even argue, he wasn’t happy till we got home and HE had sex, I was still feeling ill. This is getting worse and yet it’s not all the time, if I’m lucky I get 5 days without issue. Can I help him? What can I do?

  6. Ku'i says:

    And what of the one whose been cheated on, has children with this person, and still hopes that they can work through these issues and be a family again? Is it alright to ask the unfaithful to choose between her life as a single woman or as the mother and wife in a family?

    This is the relationship I’m in. Our relationship was fun, spontaneous, filled with the love of two young people. Then life stepped in. One child and she’s saying, “I’m not happy anymore.” The relationship is more labored. It takes more to rekindle our passions. Child number two comes along and then she’s constantly at work coming home long enough to bath and sleep. A new twist comes, she’s going out to the nightclubs with her friends while I’m at home with our children. And then her behavior changes, she shows no interest in me anymore, activities that we once did together where we could be intimate she now avoids, she dresses up and puts on her makeup no matter if we are going to the grocery store or to her sister’s house, things that she never would get “sexified” for prior. And so I ask her if she’s seeing anyone else, and she says it’s none of my business. I confront her again, this time threatening to break her phone if she doesn’t answer. She does and the next moment I’m holding my children crying while she’s packing up some belongings to leave. A few days later, she comes back to the house and I express my forgiveness for what she’s done and my want to try to build our relationship again and she says that still loves me and tentatively agrees to work it out. Sadly it’s been more than a month since she left and came back to the house and every weekend so far, she continually goes out to the clubs with her friends while I’m at home taking care of our children while dealing with the feelings of betrayal, hurt, anger, but most of all being alone and being scared. Can I ask her to make a choice, between us and that life? Is that a controlling-relationship? I can handle being alone again, but it’s too much to be both alone and scared that she will do this again.

  7. Michelle Martinez says:

    I’m in a relationship that I know has been toxic from the beginning but I can’t find myself to leave. At first I thought I was in love and the happiest I have been but now I can’t help but see that if it was even ever love that it’s not anymore but rather me being comfortable. We broke up a few times because I knew I had to get out but I missed him terribly and he didn’t help by continue to pursue me and say all the nice things a girl wants to hear and I would take him back thinking maybe it was me, that I didn’t give him enough credit and so I stayed. He proposed a few weeks ago and we went to Mexico – just got back a few nights ago – and already problems are stirring. I speak to him and tell him how I feel but he always says I’m insecure and that i always stir up the arguments when in reality I retaliate on his actions. For example: I say I’m having dinner with my mom and he automatically questions me, “yea right, you’re going to be with your mom. Sure” then he continues to say “go have fun with who ever you’re really with” and from there I get mad and respond by saying he doesn’t trust me, why is it then we just go into a quarrel about everything but at the end of it for some reason I come out looking like the bad guy. I lost most of my friends and my own cousin because they got tired of telling me he isn’t the one for me, I honestly don’t blame them for not wanting to be around me anymore. I feel trapped because I feel like I can’t tell anyone of my problems because this isn’t the first time I cry about so I know it is my fault but now I feel more in the dark because I feel a part of me has to stay and deal with it because this relationship was something both him and I fought for. We had a previous encounter where I didn’t feel safe with him anymore and filed a restraining order, after a few weeks of being miserable we got into contact again and wanted to try it out again but that was it for my family and his, they didn’t want us together but we continued to fight for it and now our families are on great terms again so I feel like I have to stay because it wasn’t easy getting back to his families good graces and vice versa for him and my family. I’m young too, I’m only 23 and I feel like I should be prioritizing my time more proficiently rather than being constantly questioned on my whereabouts and with who I’m with. I was in school full time, working full time and living on my own, I considered myself to be independent especially for my age in this horrible economy but then he comes along and I stopped going to school, I got let go because I was taking too many sick days off to be with him, he got let go for the same thing, we weren’t thinking and I took for responsibility for my part because I made the choice to play hookie from work and be with him. We’re living together and basically living off of our tax return which is comfortable living but I lost myself, I’m not the same person I was before I met him. You guys hearing my story may see me as the most stupidest female to live on this planet, trust me I feel like it but I need an out and I don’t know where or how. Another reason I can’t call it quits is because I know how miserable i was when we broke up and I don’t think I can ever let myself feel that way ever again. I can’t take it. Any advice is greatly appreciated

  8. Joe says:

    Not all of these are necessarily negative. An uber competitive person might fit well with a non-competitive person who has no need to compete.

    Conversely a demanding partner may be toxic even if he/she abides by the same standard for his/her own actions. It could always be exhausting to live up to those standards.

  9. Dee medina says:

    @michelle as I was reading your post, all I could think about was how similar your story is to mine. My friends and family are tired of us being on and off again too. We were together for 2 years and broke up 24 times. I know he’s not the one for me but our break ups have been unbearable for me. I finally broke it off last night because I finally realized that he truly only cares about himself even though he always spoiled me and gave more attention than anyone else in my life. Unfortunately he also used to manipulate me, lie, talk down to me and acted like a after instead of a boyfriend. He also wanted to know my every move and when I told him, he doubted everything I said. There was no winning with him. You definitely aren’t alone. I wish you the best if luck and you may want to reconsider marrying him.

  10. Mike-Spliff says:

    1 AND 4 my last gf omg

  11. Fred says:

    What the article doesn’t mention is there aren’t toxic people. But there are toxic relationships. 2 compatible people can have a healty relationship while 2 incompatible people will get a toxic relationship. Do yo see what I mean ? You need to be 2 to create a toxic relationship, you’r not toxic on your own. (or you’r crazy or psycho). Each partner shares the responsibility in the dawnfall of the relationship and in its toxicity. If your gut feeling tells you that your relationship is draining you on an emotional level : just move out, you both are toxic towards one another….. Just have to courage to part ways, be single some time and enjoy your only presence and solitude … then when you’re ready god find a more suitable/compatible partner.. Life”s too short.

  12. through stormy clouds says:

    I have suffered through toxic relationships for a very long time. I often reach the point where i feel i cannot take it anymore, and have only started to realize a few years ago that i am actually quiet a nice person and these men were actually not right for me and were emotionally abusive/ pyschologically abusive towards me…..i do believe the phrase that it is better to be alone then with a toxic partner who ends up destroying you. How many times are people mentally and pysically destroyed in the end by bad partners?…i spoke to a women on the bus once who said she is going into the domestic violence shelter after a long time with a controlling man, and that she has never had to be alone before, she looked like she was in her early forties…….i think women and men should wake up to themselves…..they are not brave enough to confront the truth and would rather be abused and stay in bad relationships, and perhaps leave a few kids with life long problems, who are messed up by their divorces. These people are not normal though, some of these men think that bad women are normal, and its normal to go through two or three divorces like Hollywood says it is….These people are possessed, and evil and i cannot help but think they are plain DUMB. Some men i speak to are not bright, not by a long shot…..could this perhaps be because we dont have many good influences in modern society at the moment? I think the further i see these people for who they really are, the futher i begin to meet good people who have good values, good men, good friends, good people who dont even associate with the scum levels in society, people that see through toxic people, people who heal themselves from toxic people and move on…..so where to for me from here? i have accepted that solitude is better then being destroyed by toxic people who are not even special or who even care about me…to have really caring people in my life would be great after all the torture these toxic men and abusive women have put me through

  13. Tom tam says:

    after a very stressful end of year we are off work and after five years… I hear tonight, and other occasion too,I pity you because…….and contact me by Monday or it’s over…I am sorry for being verbally agressive but……. you over react….if you can remember that then you are a poor woman who can’t forgive….etc. I am really sad because to me these are not things said by someone who loves you. or am i really overreacting? I’m 50 confused and very unhappy X

  14. Same here bro says:

    Sorry to break it up to you, but she will not change. She has already made her choice. He wants to live freely but wants you be the safety net. She does not respect you. Someone who respects you would not tell you straight in the eye that her love live does not concern you. You should really get the papers ready. I have been in a similar situation, I know it sucks, but you should stand up for yourself and stop allowing her to treat you this way.

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