Stop Toxic Masculinity

8 types of Toxic Relationships and their Signs.

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What defines toxic, is dysfunction as the norm.

A toxic relationship is any relationship in which one or both parties are hurt emotionally or physically. While it’s difficult to say exactly how many relationships are toxic, experts estimate that most relationships are not healthy. In fact, dysfunction is the norm in most relationships because most people are so used to it that they’ve become numb to the pain and emotional chaos that it has become a normal part of their everyday life.

Dysfunction in relationships can be defined as anything that prevents a relationship from meeting its goals. This could include toxic behaviors like emotional and verbal abuse to neglect, and more. In most cases, dysfunction is the norm in toxic relationships.

The toxic relationship will have a serious impact on both parties involved. It can lead to long-term emotional damage, physical abuse, and even death. It’s important to be able to identify toxic relationships so that all parties can get out of them before any more damage is caused.

In a mostly healthy relationship, both parties are satisfied and fulfilled by the relationship. They feel loved and supported by one another. They have mutual respect for one another and enjoy each other’s company.

In a toxic relationship, dysfunction is the norm. The relationship is based on chaos and drama. There is no respect, only mistrust, and fear. The partners involved do not feel happy or emotionally fulfilled in the relationship but rather drained and exhausted.

Types of toxic relationships

There are 8 types of toxic relationships: rejecting, engulfing, ignoring, abusing, corrupting, trivializing, dominating, and sentimentalizing.

#1 Rejecting

A rejecting relationship is a toxic relationship in which one party is constantly rejected and made to feel unworthy. They may be ignored, dismissed, or ridiculed. Common signs of a rejecting relationship are:

  • One party is always ignored or dismissed
  • One party is ridiculed or made to feel unworthy
  • One party is always the one giving, with nothing in return

When you’re in a relationship with someone who constantly dismisses you, it feels like you’re not good enough. You feel unimportant and insignificant. You feel like you can’t do anything right and that your opinions don’t matter.

You start to doubt yourself and your ability to make decisions. You begin to wonder what you’re doing wrong and what you could be doing better. You feel like you’re always walking on eggshells, trying not to upset the other person.

It’s a very defeating feeling, and it can be incredibly demoralizing. It makes you feel like you’re not good enough for anyone, let alone the person you love.

#2 Engulfing

An engulfing relationship is a toxic relationship in which one party feels suffocated by the other. They may feel like they’re being smothered or that their own identity is being eroded. The signs of an engulfing relationship are:

  • One party feels suffocated by the other
  • One party feels like their own identity is being eroded
  • One party feels like they’re constantly being controlled

When you’re in an engulfing relationship, it feels like you’re constantly being smothered. You feel like you can’t breathe like the other person is sucking all the air out of the room. You feel like you’re losing yourself, that your own identity is being eroded. You feel like you’re constantly being controlled and that you have no say in what happens.

It’s suffocating and anxiety-provoking. You never know what the other person is going to do or how they’re going to react. You’re always walking on eggshells, afraid of saying or doing the wrong thing. You can’t relax and just be yourself around them.

The control they have over you is oppressive and stifling.

#3 Ignoring

An ignoring relationship is a toxic relationship in which one party is consistently ignored or made to feel invisible. They may feel like they don’t exist or that their opinions and feelings don’t matter. The signs of an ignoring relationship are:

  • One party is consistently ignored
  • One party feels like they don’t exist
  • One party feels like their opinions and feelings don’t matter

Why does being ignored hurt so much? It feels like you’re not even there. Like you’re invisible that your presence doesn’t matter, that you’re not worth their time or attention. It’s heartbreaking and soul-crushing. To know that someone doesn’t want you around, that they don’t care about you, is the ultimate rejection.

When you’re the one doing the ignoring, you’re essentially rejecting the other person. You’re making them feel unworthy and unimportant. You’re telling them that their feelings don’t matter and that they’re not worth your time.

This can be incredibly damaging to the other person’s self-esteem. It can make them feel like they’re not good enough and that they’ll never be good enough for you. It can leave them feeling rejected and alone. And it can be incredibly difficult to overcome that kind of rejection.

#4 Abusing

An abusive relationship is a toxic relationship in which one party is physically, verbally, or emotionally abused by the other. The signs of an abusive relationship are:

  • One party is physically, verbally, or emotionally abused by the other
  • One party lives in fear of the other
  • One party has a history of being abused

Being in an abusive relationship is one of the worst things imaginable. You’re constantly living in fear of the other person. You never know what they’re going to do or how they’re going to react. You’re always walking on eggshells, afraid of saying or doing the wrong thing.

The abuse can be physical, verbal, or emotional, and it can be incredibly damaging to the victim’s psyche. They may feel like they’re not good enough and that they’ll never be good enough for their abuser. They may feel like they’re not worth anything and that they deserve the abuse.

The abuse can leave them feeling traumatized and shattered. It can be incredibly difficult to overcome that kind of trauma.

#5 Corrupting

A corrupting relationship is a toxic relationship in which one party influences the other to engage in harmful or illegal activities. The signs of a corrupting relationship are:

  • One party influences the other to engage in harmful or illegal activities
  • One party benefits from the other’s harmful or illegal activities
  • One party is always the one getting in trouble

It feels like you’re constantly being dragged down. You can’t seem to escape the other person’s influence, and they keep pulling you deeper and deeper into darkness. You feel like you’re losing yourself, that your own identity is being eroded. You feel like you’re constantly being controlled and that you have no say in what happens.

It’s suffocating and anxiety-provoking. You never know what the other person is going to do or how they’re going to react. You’re always walking on eggshells, afraid of saying or doing the wrong thing. You can’t relax and just be yourself around them.

The control they have over you is oppressive and stifling.

#6 Trivializing

A trivializing relationship is a toxic relationship in which one party is constantly belittled or made to feel like their opinions and feelings don’t matter. The signs of a trivializing relationship are:

  • One party is constantly belittled
  • One party feels like their opinions and feelings don’t matter
  • One party is always the one being put down

When you’re in a trivializing relationship, you constantly feel like you’re not good enough. You feel like your opinions and feelings don’t matter. You’re always the one being put down and belittled. It’s incredibly demoralizing and soul-crushing. It makes you feel like you’re not worth anything and that you’ll never be good enough.

The other person is always in control, and they never let you forget it. They make you feel like you’re nothing, that you’re worthless and insignificant. It’s incredibly demeaning and humiliating. It’s hard to maintain your self-esteem when you’re constantly being told that you’re not good enough.

The other person always has the last word, and they never hesitate to use it to put you down. It’s a toxic, soul-sucking relationship that can be incredibly difficult to escape from.

#7 Dominating

A dominating relationship is a toxic relationship in which one party controls the other through fear or force. The signs of a dominating relationship are:

  • One party controls the other through fear or force
  • One party is always the one in charge
  • One party benefits from the other’s compliance

When you’re in a dominating relationship, you feel like you’re constantly walking on eggshells. You’re always afraid of saying or doing the wrong thing and making the other person angry. You feel like you’re constantly being controlled and that you have no say in what happens. You feel like you’re not worth anything and that you deserve the abuse.

The other person is always in control, and they never let you forget it. They make you feel like you’re nothing, that you’re worthless and insignificant. It’s incredibly demeaning and humiliating. It’s hard to maintain your self-esteem when you’re constantly being told that you’re not good enough.

The other person always has the last word, and they never hesitate to use it to put you down. It’s a toxic, soul-sucking relationship that can be incredibly difficult to escape from.

#8 Sentimentalizing

A sentimentalizing relationship is a toxic relationship in which one party consistently tries to evoke an emotional response from the other. They may do this by constantly talking about their own problems or by playing on the other’s emotions. The signs of a sentimentalizing relationship are:

  • One party constantly talks about their own problems
  • One party plays on the other’s emotions
  • One party is always the one seeking attention

In a sentimentalizing relationship, you feel like you’re always the one who is being used. You feel like the other person only cares about themselves and their own problems. They play on your emotions and manipulate you to get what they want. It’s a toxic, one-sided relationship that can be incredibly difficult to escape from.

If you find yourself or a family member in a toxic relationship, it’s important to reach out for help. Talk to a trusted friend or family member about what’s going on. Consider talking to a therapist or counselor who can help you deal with the emotional fallout of being in a toxic relationship. If the abuse is physical, call the National Domestic Violence Hotline at 1-800-799-7233 for help and resources.

Keep in mind that it takes two, to create a toxic relationship, meaning your own words and actions matter as well.

People in toxic relationships often don’t realize they’re in one. And since these types of relationships are dysfunctional, the norm is for one or both parties to be unaware of their harmful behavior. This means that one party almost always feels like this is a healthy relationship. That’s why it’s important for people in all relationships to engage in self-reflection. By taking a look at their own actions and words, they may be able to identify the signs of a toxic relationship and work to end or avoid it.

If you realize you are in a toxic relationship, the first step is to take a real and honest look at yourself and your own emotions. Are you engaging in any of the 8 types of toxic behavior listed above? or are you in a healthy relationship?

Here are 5 simple steps of self-reflection for healthy relationships:

1. Start by taking an inventory of your own actions and words.

One way to check yourself on toxic relationships is to take an inventory of your own actions and words is to ask yourself some tough questions. For example, are you always putting your partner down? Do you constantly criticize them? Are you always talking about your own problems? If you answer yes to any of these questions, then you need to start making some changes.

Another way to take an inventory of your own actions and words is to keep track of how you’re treating your partner. Note the things you say and do that make them feel good and the things that make them feel bad. If the majority of your interactions with your partner are negative, then it’s time to rethink how you’re treating them.

2. Be mindful of how you make your partner & others feel.

Be careful of how you make your partner and other relationships feel. If you’re always putting them down, criticizing them, or talking about your own problems, it’s not good. When it comes to romantic partners, we should always aim to make them feel better about themselves. Treat them like friends and partners. After all, we want them to feel happy and loved, right?

When you’re mindful of how you make your partner feel, it increases their self-esteem. You make them feel important and valued by being attentive to their thoughts and feelings. You give them the attention they deserve, and in turn, they feel good about themselves. This increases their self-esteem and makes them feel happier in the relationship.

Here are some tips on how to be more mindful of your partner and avoid creating a toxic relationship:

  • Understand your partner’s love language
  • Don’t take them for granted
  • Listen more, talk less
  • Pay attention to their body language
  • Be present in the moment
  • Avoid distractions when you’re together
  • Show your partner affection regularly

3. Always work to resolve conflicts in a healthy way.

Resolving conflict in a healthy way means communicating openly and honestly, listening to the other person, and being respectful. It’s important to remember that not everyone communicates in the same way, so be patient and understanding. If you’re feeling overwhelmed or angry, take some time to calm down before trying to resolve the conflict.

Healthy conflict resolution typically involves compromising, considering the other person’s feelings, and ultimately resolving the conflict in a constructive way. Unhealthy conflict resolution often involves yelling, name-calling, and/or withdrawing from the situation. In a toxic relationship, unhealthy conflict resolution is often the norm. It’s important to be aware of how you typically resolve conflicts, as physical or verbal abuse are signs of a toxic relationship and can affect one or both partners.

Resolving conflict can be difficult in toxic relationships, but it’s not impossible. There are many resources available to help you learn how to communicate effectively during conflict resolution. If you’re having difficulty resolving a conflict with your partner, it may be helpful to seek out professional help.

4. Make sure to have realistic expectations for your relationships.

It’s important to have realistic expectations for our relationships because if we don’t, we’re setting ourselves up for disappointment.

When we have unrealistic expectations, we’re expecting our partner to be perfect – and let’s face it, nobody is perfect. We’re also expecting our relationship to be perfect, and that’s just as not possible.

Relationships are hard work. They require compromise, patience, and understanding. And they aren’t always going to be sunshine and roses. There will be times when things are tough, and we’ll want to give up. But if one or both partners have realistic expectations, we’ll be more likely to stick it out through the tough times.

So what exactly are realistic expectations? Here are some tips for setting expectations that avoid toxic behavior:

  • Don’t expect your partner to always agree with you. In toxic relationships, one or both parties often try to control the other person. This can involve trying to force them to agree with you all the time, even if they don’t actually agree.
  • Don’t try to control your partner. – let them make their own decisions. Respect their opinions, even if you don’t agree with them. And be prepared to compromise in order to resolve conflicts.
  • Don’t expect your partner to always make you happy. They’re not a mind reader, and they can’t always predict what will make you happy. If you’re constantly expecting them to make you happy, you’re setting yourself up for disappointment. Instead, try to be more independent and find ways to make yourself happy. This will help take some of the pressure off of your partner and will ultimately make your relationship stronger.
  • Don’t expect your relationship to be perfect. Relationships are hard work, and they require compromise, patience, and understanding. There will be times when things are tough, and we’ll want to give up. That is OK.
  • Do expect to have to work on your relationship. Remember, relationships take work – it’s not all going to be easy sailing.
  • Do expect that there will be ups and downs. So be prepared to put in the effort if you want your relationship to last.

5. Make time for Yourself and Your partner.

Most people know that it’s important to make time for themselves, but what we often forget is that it’s also crucial to make time for our partners.

When we take the time to focus on ourselves AND our relationships, we’re setting ourselves up for success. We’re ensuring that we have the energy and resources we need to handle whatever life throws our way.

And when we make time for our partner, we’re showing them that they matter to us. We’re telling them that they’re important and that we want to spend time with them.

So how can you go about making time for yourself AND your partner? Here are a few tips:

  1. Make a commitment to spend quality time together on a regular basis.
  2. Set aside time each week to focus on your relationship.
  3. Plan special outings and date nights on a regular basis.
  4. Take a trip together without the kids or other distractions.
  5. Make sure you have some “me” time every day or week to do things you enjoy.
  6. Don’t neglect your relationship by keeping communication open and making an effort to connect with your partner on a regular basis.

Options & Solutions for toxic relationships

When you’re in a toxic relationship, it can be difficult to know what to do.

You may feel like you’re trapped and that you have no choice but to stay in the toxic relationship. But that’s not true. You do have a choice.

Making the decision to get help for your relationship can be difficult, but it’s important to remember that you are not alone. There are many people you can talk with who can help you through this difficult time, including dating and relationship coaches that specialize in helping toxic behavior.

  1. A relationship coach can provide support and guidance.
  2. They can help you to identify toxic behaviors in your relationship.
  3. They can help you to develop healthy coping mechanisms.
  4. They can teach you how to communicate effectively with your partner.
  5. They can provide practical advice and support throughout the healing process.

No one deserves to be in a toxic relationship. If you are in a toxic relationship, there are options available to you. You do not have to stay in the relationship. There are many people who can help you through this difficult time, including dating and relationship coaches that specialize in helping toxic behavior. A relationship coach can provide support and guidance.


Illa Lynn is one of many verified dating and relationship coaches who specialize in toxic relationships at Matchmaker Review.

She understands the challenges that come with being in or having been in a toxic relationship, and she can provide the support and guidance you need to get through this difficult time. Our experts have had years of experience helping people heal their relationships, and she can help you do the same. Contact her today for a free consultation.

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