Relationships can withstand many obstacles – bad cooking, long distance, leaving dirty laundry on the floor, and relentless family drama - however there are some toxic relationship habits that can truly poison a relationship over time. There is no such thing as a perfect relationship but we can strive for a healthy and loving one. Some of our everyday routines and behaviors easily do more damage than good, whether we are conscious of them or not. So it's time to break 7 toxic relationship habits and heal your way into a stronger relationship with your loved one.
1. Checking His Phone
It is easy to scroll through his text message inbox and call log. It is even easier to glance over to the lit up screen and peek at who is calling him. However, having this stolen knowledge will not confirm your trust in the man you share a meal or your bed with, but rather will drive you to a state of constant paranoia and doubt. Checking his phone for messages, calls, and pictures is one of the worst toxic relationship habits that you need to be rid of. If he finds out you have been snooping, the trust will be broken and can be difficult to rebuild. Besides, if you have a suspicion there are messages and calls he is trying to hide, that's a completely different red flag you need to address.
2. Saying You’re Fine
Lying never gets you anywhere, and lying about your emotions moves you back five spaces. With tense shoulders and tight lips, women often reply with "I’m fine" when asked what’s wrong. The problem may be about work, friends, a traffic jam, or often times the culprit is your significant other. Rather than remain closed off and bottle up your feelings, communicate with your partner about how you are feeling and why. Otherwise, you may just blow your lid and explode on them, leaving them confused and the problem unsolved.
3. Using the Ex Card
Leave the past in the past. Your relationship with your ex ended for a reason so there is no reason to keep their presence alive in your current relationship. When feeling down, lost, or targeted, we sometimes resort to low blow defense mechanisms: i.e. bringing up The Ex. Subtle jabs about how The Ex had such great taste in music, a spontaneous spirit, or a "real job" will hurt your partner more than you realize. Belittling someone or comparing them to another will not motivate them to change, but rather to resent.
4. The Silent Treatment
Communication is key – and the key to a healthy relationship is open communication. An ineffective defense mechanism many people resort to is giving the cold shoulder. Slamming doors, walking out, and the silent treatment will not solve a problem. A relationship is a living, changing, and growing being; it requires time, effort, and communication to evolve. Talk through your problems together or you fill find freezing them out will only burn bridges.
5. Not Kissing Goodnight or Goodbye
Intimacy is both physical and emotional. Keeping the passion alive with physical intimacy separates a relationship from a friendship. The warm touch of your partner is a sign of affection, comfort, and desire; so when the embraces become less frequent and the kisses out of habit, the relationship finds itself stuck in a dry rut. Always end the date or the day with a meaningful kiss goodbye or goodnight. That last embrace fuels the connection that keeps you two together.
6. Sharing Too Much with Your Friends
Girls Night Out is a necessary occurrence; however Girls Night Out with baggage is not. Our best friends will always be by our sides to lift us out of bed when we’ve given up, listen to us complain about our tyrannical bosses, and pour the second glass of wine. This loyal camaraderie must navigate the delicate boundaries of relationship interference. When around friends we tend to vent about the difficult days with our partner rather than gloat about the amazing love affair. So an overshare of your relationship with your partner can cause naturally protective best friends to raise pitch forks against your significant other. Your friends are not part of your twosome, thus they do not need to know every detail or be lead to skewed perceptions by only hearing the bad.
7. Justifying the Bad
The other downfall to Girls Night Out with baggage is when we sit there justifying the bad. We are not only trying to convince our friends that he won’t cheat again, or he will start paying rent, or he doesn’t believe in talking on the phone, but we are also trying to convince ourselves. Rationalizing bad behaviors, actions, and words perpetuates unhealthy relationships. Don’t settle for less than 100% of someone’s love, attention, and commitment, and more importantly don’t try to justify settling.
Putting in the effort to break the toxic habits of a relationship will help you glide into the routine of a loving one. Stop checking his phone and telling him you’re fine. Don’t hold an ex over his head or give him the cold shoulder when you’re mad. Always kiss them goodnight or goodbye. Avoid oversharing the bad with your friends and justifying it to yourself. These habits hinder the growth of a connection between two people so replace them with words and touches of affection. What other toxic relationship habits can you add to the list?