25.10.2017

Despite that unhealthy and destructive relationships are a common thing in real life, in psychology, there’s no such definition. Experts prefer to call them disharmonious relationships, that is, the ones where one or both partners are constantly experiencing discomfort. And how strong this discomfort is and why people tolerate it is a different question.

What relationships can be considered unhealthy? Those that don’t make one of the companions happy and don’t involve personal development. Instead, they lead to psychological problems and aggravate them up to mental disorders and even physical ailments.

healthy vs unhealthy relationships

How unhealthy relationships ruin our lives

What is an unhealthy relationship? It’s like a disease, and some diseases indicate that we do something wrong. Some people try to ease the pain with pills, disconnect from the body and continue to live on, not changing anything in their lives. Then the disease spreads more, and the body itself begins signaling its owner that something’s not right. The same goes for unhealthy relationships. There are issues that point us to the gaps that need to be filled. Here’s what happens if we don’t do it.

Living with someone out of habit

Let's say a couple decided to live together, but a lot changed over the years, and now there’s no love and spiritual intimacy between them. A relationship has long become a routine, but partners either don’t see this or, which is more likely, they don’t want to understand it and leave their comfort zone. Both partners simply live according to the long-established scenario: they go shopping, go on vacations, have sex, but there’s no point in doing it anymore.

Total control

Sometimes one of the partners seems to “dissolve” in another. This mostly concerns women. Alas, a lot of girls think that they’re wives first, and then friends, moms, lovers, and so on. Having no personal interests, the woman tries to get into the life of her man completely. But she can do it only through total control. Constant phone calls, sudden visits to the boyfriend’s office, mistrust – all these are the usual phenomena in such couples. But with such behavior, the “controller” humiliates herself. And if you don’t respect yourself, others won’t do it either. Nobody wants to be a trained puppy, so the partner who feels the pressure of such control often spills out his negative emotions on the one who’s in control. In general, there’s no harmony and trust in such couples. If we’re talking about healthy vs. unhealthy relationships, the first ones should always involve personal freedom.

Abusing addictions

If one of the partners has an addiction, then absolutely all quarrels will be based on this problem. No matter if it's alcohol abuse or, for example, gambling, the main thing is that one of the partner’s weakness hinders the development of relationships. This problem, like a broken tree fallen in the middle of the road, doesn’t allow to move forward. unhealthy relationshipsOf course, the situation becomes more complicated when the partner doesn’t see his addiction as a problem, but even if he is ready to fight it, the second partner won’t let him do it.

How to leave an unhealthy relationship

Remove obstacles. The problem of destructive relationships is that they always compensate for something. For example, unhealthy love can be a result of loneliness or damaged self-esteem. The problem won’t go away until you solve it. And remember that alcohol is not the best helper, it only worsens things. This also applies to an unhealthy relationship.

Motivate yourself. For example, if you drink a bottle of wine a day, you get a disturbed sleep and health issues, and this is a good reason to quit. But with love, everything is much more complicated. Think of what you can get from the breakup: you’ll feel lightness and joy, and peace will return to you. You’ll be able to achieve more in life because your consciousness will finally be free from the disease of a destructive relationship, allowing you to concentrate on other matters. You won’t have to worry again and feel unhappy, guilty, and angry. You’ll be open to new opportunities, like meeting an interesting person or moving to another city. And you’ll get all this by saying “goodbye” to your partner.

Signs of an unhealthy relationship

People waste years trying to get out of unhealthy relationships, and before that, they spend even more time to realize that there is a problem. What alarm signals should you pay attention to? Well, this disease has a few standard symptoms. Let’s compare healthy and unhealthy relationships.

1) Your partner is constantly competing with you

For some reason, your partner constantly compares herself to you and wants to show that she’s better. Every word you say starts a fierce dispute. Your partner uses every opportunity to assert herself at your expense and devalue your achievements. In a healthy relationship, both partners develop as personalities harmoniously. In an unhealthy relationship, you’re perceived as a rival that needs to be outsmarted.

2) You feel your energy stolen from you

Relationships affect our health and well-being. If you notice that you sleep less, lose weight or gain some, and constantly feel like a squeezed lemon, perhaps you live with an energy vampire. Such people live at the expense of others’ energy. In such relationships, you physically don’t have enough resources, strength, and desire to do anything. Apathy takes over you, and it’s the shortest path to depression.

3) Your partner always blames you for everything

In unhealthy relationships, your loved one doesn’t see the cause of problems and failures in her actions and is always inclined to put the blame on others, especially you. You’re to blame for everything, including her mistakes and things that don’t depend on you. At the same time, your only task is not to make the partner mad, preventing her frequent outbursts of anger.

4) Your partner wants to change you

Don’t forget, mature and strong relationships are based on the acceptance of the partner as she or he is. If you’re always comparedsigns of unhealthy relationships to others, and your companion says or politely hints that it’d be nice for you to change something in yourself, it’s one of the signs of an unhealthy relationship. You’re always missing something for your partner to be completely satisfied with you.

5) The partner speaks only about herself

Your companion isn’t able to sympathize and empathize. Such people have problems with emotional intelligence and empathy. The partner can’t put herself in another person’s shoes or doesn’t want to because she thinks that the world revolves around her. Is she always talking about herself? It seems that your loved one is narcissistic. Narcissistic people are crazy about themselves so much that they don’t notice what’s going on around them. All the needs, desires, and feelings of such person are always more important than yours.

6) All your actions are criticized

Everything you do or say is wrong. No matter how hard you try, your companion will always find an excuse to criticize you and your actions. And you can’t prove the opposite – there will still be new reasons for criticism. No evidence and arguments can help because such people only hear themselves. As for healthy vs. unhealthy relationships, criticism shouldn’t even exist in healthy ones.

7) Your partner controls all your life

Your companion is literally obsessed with the desire to subjugate your entire life. She certainly needs to know what you eat, where you are, or who’s with you. Sometimes such control can be mistaken for care, but in fact, your partner just feels like she’s taking away your life from you. People who are in a healthy and harmonious relationship understand that having a life and hobbies outside relationships is normal and even beneficial for the couple.

8) Your partner is too jealous

Is jealousy healthy or unhealthy in a relationship? It’s hard to tell, actually. It all depends on how people express their jealousy. Some turn into real tyrants, trying to take control over their loved ones. If your partner doesn’t trust you and gets mad because of some Facebook message – it’s a warning sign. Jealous people see betrayal in everything. Terrorizing jealousy inevitably destroys your self-esteem and puts an end to relationships eventually.

9) Your partner is easily offended

Your life is a total drama, and all your actions hurt your partner’s feelings. And you feel like a cruel monster, while your companion enjoys a scandal she caused. Sounds familiar? Congratulations, it’s one of the unhealthy relationship characteristics. It’s possible that your partner consciously uses such tactics, manipulating your sense of guilt.

10) Your partner doesn’t understand your language of love

Often people misunderstand the needs of their partners. Psychologists distinguish five languages of love: words of encouragement, the time you devote to your loved one, gifts, help, and touch. We all speak different languages, and it’s crucial to understand what language your companion speaks. Imagine that your language of love is words of encouragement. This means that you need to hear more of these words from her. If she doesn’t understand what you expect from her, take it as one of the signs of unhealthy relationships.

11) You have different biorhythms

You can’t find a common language and agree when it's better to go to bed and at what time you should get up. unhealthy relationship characteristicsIn other words, your partner lives while you sleep and vice versa. As a result, you get upset because your companion spends nights in the club and wastes your only day off on sleep.

In healthy relationships, it’s possible to find a balance and change habits, so that both feel comfortable. In unhealthy ones, this becomes the reason for a mutual frustration.

12) You don’t have sex anymore

In the list of unhealthy relationships signs, this one is the most important. It’s difficult to argue with human nature: physical intimacy and regular sex life are a necessary attribute of healthy and strong relationships. If there’s no intimacy between you, and tactile contact is minimized, you probably have serious problems in your couple’s life.

In conclusion

Getting away from one destructive relationship, a person immediately gets involved into another, not giving himself a pause to digest previous experience and figure out what happened. A failed relationship didn’t lead to personal development, the experience wasn’t analyzed, and the necessary changes in this person’s consciousness never occurred. It’s crucial to make a pause before starting a new relationship. Otherwise, there is a risk to either make the same mistakes again or spend a lot of time looking for that special someone, and you’ll feel the fear that may prevent you from finding another life partner. That’s the way our psyche protection works.

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