Home Love & Relationships The Silent Health Hazards Of Toxic Relationships

The Silent Health Hazards Of Toxic Relationships


While you may be a health-conscious person who wants to make sure that the food you eat is organic, or gluten and additive – free, you should know that toxic relationships can have an equally harmful effect on your health as unhealthy, processed food. Toxic relationships are highly negative and can substantially damage not only your physical but emotional health as well.

If toxic relationships aren’t handled on time, they can create high-stress levels, weak immune system, anxiety, depression, and medical problems.

We can all agree that there’s no such thing as a smooth and conflict-free relationship, be it with your partner, family members, friends, or coworkers. Yet, toxic relationships are a completely different thing. They’re overwhelming. They suck the happiness out of you and leave you physically and emotionally drained.

Are you already wondering if you’re in a toxic relationship? Well, try to honestly answer the following 6 questions and your answers will help you find that out:

1. Do you feel that he/she feels content to be with you and accepts you for who you are, or do you feel like you have to change your habits and behavior so as to make them happy?

2. Does the other person make you feel genuinely happy and emotionally satisfied, or do they suck the happiness and energy out of you?

3. Does this person make you feel both emotionally and physically safe when you’re around them, or do they threaten you and make you feel insecure?

4. Do you feel better or worse about yourself after you spend time together?

5. Do both of you equally care about the “give and take” part of the relationship, or is it only your responsibility?

6. Which feelings predominate more in the relationship: feelings of happiness, satisfaction, and security, or uneasiness, apprehension, and drama?

Now, make sure you make a comparison between your answers and these descriptions of healthy and toxic relationships:

The most common characteristics of healthy relationships are safety, understanding, listening, acceptance, compassion, mutual love and respect, commitment, sharing, self-sacrifice, and healthy arguments.

On the other hand, toxic relationships are characterized by mental and physical abuse, fear, insecurity, a strong need for dominance, jealousy, intimidation, manipulation, lack of honesty and trust, selfishness, rejection, bitter and harsh criticism, disrespectful comments and verbal insults, and possessiveness.

How can you change toxic relationships?

Recognizing the signs of a toxic relationship is the first step to changing it. Oftentimes, people decide to stay in toxic relationships because they’re unwilling to accept the unpleasant truth that their relationship is unhealthy.

Having high self-esteem is a crucial factor in the process of changing an unhealthy relationship. You need to have a strong belief and confidence in your abilities and values. You have to realize and make others aware of the fact that you deserve to be treated with love and respect. If you’re already suffering from low self-esteem, changing this attitude will certainly not be easy, but asking for help from your loved ones or professional counselors can help you a lot.

Having the strength, courage, and willingness to deal with the other person’s toxic behavior is another requirement you must meet. Once you become more confident about yourself and more aware of your worth, it’ll be easier for you to stand up for yourself and confront the toxic person.

Tell them directly how you feel. Tell them something like: “I find your behavior highly unfair and abusive.” Or  “I hate that you’re always putting the blame on me for anything bad that happens. I wish you’d stop making me feel like I’m never good enough.” In this way, you’ll get rid of unnecessary stress and make them aware of their harmful behavior.

Be careful, though. If the other person is physically abusing you, by opposing them, you can only make things worse. If that’s the case, seek professional help.

And if the other person, be it your partner, family member, or friend refuses to change their toxic behavior, get ready to leave them behind and move on with your life. Remember that you’re not obliged to put up with anybody’s BS or let them damage your health!

Image:Whitney Justesen