How to know when it’s time to let go of a toxic relationship

Relationships are complicated, even the best of them. So, we’ve all been in a toxic relationship. Whether it’s a toxic friendship, or an unhealthy relationship with a significant other – it is something everyone will deal with at least once in their lives. 

I know it’s hard to let go of toxic people sometimes. There’s a reason you care about them, a reason you started talking to them, and a reason why you’ve been willing to look past how they make you feel for so long. Maybe they make you feel safe, or maybe you’re afraid to be alone. Maybe you’re holding on to the idea of the person they used to be, but they changed and so have you. 

Just to clarify, I’m not talking about someone who’s abusive- that’s a much larger and more serious issue that I can’t speak on. I’m talking about a friend or a partner who is always putting you down, belittling you, manipulating you or making you feel like crap about yourself. Maybe you’re always fighting, or maybe you’re constantly walking around on eggshells because you don’t want to lose them. Maybe they’re selfish and constantly blow you off or do things without considering your feelings. Maybe they make false promises and use you, then run along to the next person.

If any of those things make you think of someone, you’re probably in a toxic relationship. But that’s okay. It’s important to know that you don’t have to feel this way and someone who cares about you wouldn’t make you feel this way. I’ve dealt with toxic friendships, and a toxic on again off again cycle with a guy. Also, scorpio exes are always a trip -if you know, you know. Jokes aside, it’s something we all deal with. The important thing is recognizing that the relationship is toxic, and letting it go. It no longer serves you and is probably hurting you. 

Maybe you’re thinking, Carly you’re being extra – they can be toxic but we only fight sometimes. Maybe you’re right, but it is important to realize when a relationship is toxic and is preventing you from living your best life. We are also more likely to call a partner out on being toxic. Toxic friendships are so much more common, and usually go on for a while and end up really hurting people. That’s why it is important to let go of toxic things. They prevent you from being truly happy. 

I’m sharing from my experiences, and things I’ve seen my friends and family go through. You deserve better than being treated like that, and sometimes we don’t even realize someone is toxic. It’s never easy to walk away, but sometimes you need to for your mental health and happiness Here are some major signs that you need to let go of a toxic relationship or friendship: 

You always feel guilty (also if they’re super possessive)

I’ve seen this in friendships and relationships. You have a best friend or significant other, but you have other friends who you hang out with. If this person wants to do something with you and you’re with someone else all hell breaks loose. They make you feel guilty and accuse you of blowing off, being a bad friend, or cheating. It will end up isolating you from other people and make you more dependent on them. Not only that, this is super possessive behavior. In both friendships and relationships this is a red flag. They also probably blame you for everything – every problem, and every fight is your fault. This is a sign of a manipulative, toxic person. And it is a very real reason to say good bye. 

Their behavior is unpredictable 

Walking on eggshells in fear of how someone will react to everything is not healthy. A major part of being a friend or a significant other is making someone feel comfortable being themselves. If someone in your life is constantly making you walk on eggshells, they are preventing you from being truly happy. 

They constantly belittle you and what you’re interested in

Belittling is many things: name calling, putting someone down, making fun of them, and being unsupportive of them are all forms of belittling. When someone constantly makes you feel stupid or bad about yourself, they’re affecting how you are feeling about yourself. This can lower your confidence, and make you feel like crap. Try to express to this person how they make you feel, and why it’s not okay. If they can’t change, maybe distance yourself from them. Your friend or your partner should be hyping you up and making you feel confident.

It’s always about them

This one is more in friendships but can apply in relationships too. Friendship should be an equal balance of give and take. It can be exhausting constantly hearing about someone else, when they never listen to you. Also, it’s usually their way or the highway, which can prevent you from doing what you want to do. Maybe they never support you, or never can let you have your moment. Either way, this can make you feel like crap about yourself and it is unfair to you. It’s also preventing you from being consistently happy. 

You can’t trust them

Lying is a big pet peeve of mine, but this goes beyond that. In a relationship it could be cheating, flirting with your friends, or maybe you’re talking to someone and they lie about having a girlfriend. That'll getcha - that's a story for another time. Again jokes aside, that’s toxic and is unfair to you. You deserve better and shouldn’t lower your expectations because they’re feeling themselves. Know your worth. Sorry I went off a little too hard there, but it can be a friendship thing too. Maybe they always lie to you and make things up – which is a major reason to say goodbye. Or maybe you can’t trust them to keep what you say to them to themselves. This isn’t healthy and can hurt you in the long run. If they can’t be honest, maybe it’s time to say goodbye. 

Poor Communication

They never talk to you about what’s wrong, and eventually talk about you behind your back. This is petty and childish. If your friend or SO has an issue with you, they should talk to you about it instead of being childish. Poor communication can let things fester and create hostility. If they can’t grow up, this is another reason to let go of a toxic relationship.

These are some major reasons why you might want to let go of a toxic relationship. I know it’s hard, and like I said there is probably a reason you’ve looked past it for so long. Separating a person from their memories and how you perceive them is hard. I’ve probably tried to ignore all of the behaviors on this list. You shouldn’t have to give up pieces of yourself to fix someone else. It isn’t selfish to put your happiness first. It took me a long time to realize how toxic some relationships were. Finding your people is worth it. Letting go of toxic friendships and building a positive support system for yourself is life changing. 

If you read some of the behaviors on this list and thought, wow this reminds me of….  Look at your relationship with them. If they’re preventing you from being happy and loving yourself – maybe some distance will give you perspective. You deserve the worlds.