A toxic relationship and storms caused by such passion and too much love is just one of the top reasons clients call me to seek advice and comfort. Such turbulence can have far-reaching effects that you may not recognize, and we are going to look at the why’s and the how’s of such soul-searing encounters of the heart. Get ready, gentle reader, for a guide that is sure to help you steer away from the rocks and repair your life if you have, unfortunately, become another shipwreck as the result of a toxic relationship.
First, we should look at what makes a relationship genuinely bad. There aren’t many people who deliberately seek toxic romances. Sometimes the warning signs are hard to see when you are in the midst of it. Don’t blame yourself for not seeing the truth sooner! There are times when even the reddest of warning signs can be justified because you really think you are bonded to this person.
Biology Plays a Role
Women are biologically geared to bond with their significant others even if they’re part of a toxic relationship. When a woman has an intimate orgasm with her lover, oxytocin is released into her brain and causes a bonding emotion. This is the result of millions of years of evolution and it is highly unlikely to change anytime soon! For this reason, intimate sexual encounters (and, yes, there is a difference between an intimate encounter and a purely sexual one) should be approached with real consideration because feelings of empathy and trust emerge. It doesn’t take a neurobiologist to figure out how powerful this connection can become, and it can very easily be applied to someone who is not worthy of either empathy or trust. There are unseemly men (and women) who count on this effect and use it as the opening door for years of manipulation and abuse!
A Relationship is an Investment
I often advise people to consider relationships the same way they would any other investment. If you are putting in 80% of your entire earnings into an investment that is only returning less than 30%, how long are you going to keep dumping your life savings into such an investment? How much more is your heart worth? Look at what you are putting into the relationship and then give an honest assessment of what is coming back to you.
Too Much Drama
Another sign of a genuinely toxic relationship is a hyperbolic amount of drama! A toxic romance is filled with ridiculous amounts of drama. It is this continual state of stress that can cause you to feel paralyzed or you may justify staying because you feel guilty or responsible. This is the kind of justification that can cost you the very essence of yourself! You become so focused on taking care of the other person that your needs are completely absorbed by the drama.
If any of this sounds familiar, it is time to ask yourself if you are ready to take charge of your life and make a genuinely courageous move to walk away from a relationship that is taking from you far more than it will ever offer in return.
Answer These Two Questions
Are you afraid of leaving the toxic relationship only to find that you will spend all the remainder of your days alone? Do you fear some kind of physical or emotional retribution? If you have answered yes to either of these questions, you are definitely in a relationship you should leave!
Your first yes is out of fear. It is very unlikely that you will never have another relationship once you leave the toxic one. Just make sure you heal from this toxin so that you do not invite another bad relationship into your life.
The answer to the second question is slightly more challenging. If you fear physical retribution, seek protection and find what avenues of safety are available to you. If you fear emotional retaliation, simply “ghost” your soon-to-be ex. Block all media channels and all known phone numbers and email addresses. If you live together, move out immediately and have your mail forwarded to a commercial mail service so no one can find your actual physical address.
A Ritual With Two Letters
A great way to move past a toxic relationship is a simple but very powerful ritual that I have recommended to many people with great results. Find an evening when you can be completely alone. Turn off the phone, television, etc. Gather together a writing tablet, a comfortable pen, and a relaxing beverage. Turn down the lights. Light a candle and get ready to write two letters. Only you will ever read these letters, but that doesn’t change the importance of what you are about to write.
The first letter will be to your ex. Write down everything you’re feeling and all that you perceive of that relationship. The second letter will be a love letter—to yourself! Write down all the wonderful things you know about yourself and the dreams you want to make come true. Don’t hold anything back in either letter. After you have written the letters, take a break for about 30 minutes.
Now go back to the letters and read them as if you were reading them for the first time. Really let the words soak into your heart. Burn the letter to your ex and watch the ashes wash away in the sink. That relationship is over, and you can take from it a knowledge that can help you steer clear of toxic relationships in the future. The second letter is one that you will cherish and treat like the greatest love letter you have ever been given!
The greatest love you will ever have begins with loving yourself. Don’t settle for someone who does not celebrate the wonderful and unique human you are!