Relationships are not always easy and, in fact, conflicts are common; they can emerge at any time and in great detail.
Each member of the relationship has their own ideas and their own way of understanding the world and life, and it is not always easy to understand the other’s position. However, with love and mastery of a range of social skills, along with a healthy dose of resilience and negotiation skills, the relationship can be successful.
Sometimes, however, being in a relationship can be hell, so toxic love makes it impossible for things to run smoothly. Toxic relationships have the characteristic that at least one member of the relationship has totally inappropriate behaviors and attitudes. If you want to know more about this type of relationship, you can read this article: “23 Signs You Have A ‘Toxic’ Relationship”.
Today we will talk about this love that causes so much suffering and explore each of its characteristics.
Types of love: toxic love
All loves are not the same. One can find genuine, pure and noble loves, difficult to find. True love is love based on trust, respect and freedom. There are also other types of love, such as the passionate, characterized by great physical attraction but little commitment.
However, there are also stormy loves, if you can call them love, in which jealousy, lack of freedom, excessive control predominate. This type of love is toxic love, a love that in most cases he lives on dependence and illusion with nothing to support him.
And is love certainly a complex question, so many theorists have tried to approach and understand it, not always by consensus. One of the best known theorists for his contributions to understanding this phenomenon is Sternberg. This author is famous for having made a classification of the different types of love. His triangular theory of love suggests that there are three elements that interact with each other to form one type or another of love. These elements are: intimacy, passion and commitment. For example, love which is made up of the three elements is consummate love.
- You can learn more about his theory in the following article: “Sternberg’s Triangular Theory of Love”
Characteristics of toxic love
But, What are the characteristics of toxic love? What makes love to cause suffering? You can find the answers to these questions in the following lines:
1. Limited social life
Toxic love is characterized because the person puts aside all of their friendships and it is poured purely and exclusively in the relation. It may sound like an act of love, but it’s actually a loss of autonomy.
The person stops frequenting the places they frequented, puts aside their interests, neglects their old friends, and in short, ceases to be themselves and loses their own essence. This can overwhelm the couple and cause the person to stop being attractive.
2. Need love approval
The lover who gives pure love fights for his personal development and expects nothing from the couple as he is content with his life. Toxic love, on the other hand, is characterized by the fact that the individual seeks security, stability, comfort in the relationship. This is due to the fact a great fear of being alone and great insecurity. These are individuals with low self-confidence.
In highly dysfunctional romantic relationships, the need for loving treatment can lead people to become slaves to behaviors that harm them. The establishment of relational dynamics in which power is held by only one member of the coupleFor example, it is as common as it is harmful, and it is not always easy to detect. In fact, if others draw attention to the symptoms of this problem, the sufferer usually denies everything bluntly, sometimes with anger.
For this reason, professional advice is often appreciated not only for intervention, but also for support in the difficult process of recognizing the problem.
3. Emotional addiction
This insecurity makes the person feel a great emotional dependence because their happiness depends on another individuals. It becomes a problematic situation and creates dependency on the couple even if things between the two members are not going well.
- If you identify with this point and want to overcome this situation, I invite you to read this article: “12 tips to overcome emotional addiction”
4. Relationship obsession
All of this makes the person obsessed with the relationship, so that he does not let the couple breathe. He also doesn’t engage in healthy behaviors that help keep the relationship stable. For example, he neither negotiates nor respects the other. It is therefore impossible for the couple or the marriage to move forward.
5. It’s irrational and unrealistic
Unlike what could happen in a mature and genuine love, a rational and realistic love, that is, in which the person is aware of what he is going through and not only feels but also thinks, toxic love it’s purely irrational love in the most negative sense that it can have, because he lives on illusions and unrealistic expectations. For love to work, it must be mature.
6. Concern for change
In true love, the individual is happy when their partner is doing well and wants them to grow and develop. He is not afraid of change, because as a person he also fights for his personal interests, without forgetting, of course, those of the relationship. It’s not the same with toxic love because the sufferer wants everything to be under their control. He doesn’t care about the other’s happiness, just his own.
7. He is possessive
Healthy love is based on trust between the two members of the couple, it is based on freedom of choice. However, toxic love is the exact opposite, because it is possessive. the individual you must be in control of the torque at all times and find out what he’s doing and where he’s going.
7. He is manipulative
In toxic love, unfortunately, emotional blackmail and manipulation are common. It is because the person is selfish, disrespectful of the other and acts according to his interests.
His way of acting is to blame, intimidate and scare his partner. It doesn’t have to be physically, Just using expressions like: “if you leave me, you don’t want me”. This way the other member of the couple feels guilty for what is going on.
8. Try to change the other person
When a member of the couple trying to switch to an excessive degree, Then we are talking about a toxic love. If love is genuine and mature, the individual loves his partner as he is. On the other hand, if it is toxic, it will make you change something, for example, your physical appearance.
9. Blame the other
Healthy relationships are based on negotiation. People take their share of responsibility when a problem arises and are empathetic enough to understand others. In toxic relationships, one of the two always tries to blame the other. There is no room for negotiation, because the toxic lover always believes that he is right.
10. He is in pain
Love doesn’t have to make you suffer because when it does, it isn’t true love. If love is true, the relationship is symmetrical: One day gives one and the next gives to the other member of the couple. Obviously, there can be misunderstandings and discussions, but they are resolved in a mature manner. The question is simple: does this love make you suffer? If the answer is yes, then it is toxic love.