Are you in a toxic relationship? You did not get into your relationship to be treated poorly, ignored, or abandoned. Being abused or denigrated, subjected to reckless spending, deprived of a sex life, or forced to put up with problematic, immature behavior is not healthy for you. If this is occurring in your relationship, your partner needs to make major changes. Individual and couple’s counseling may be needed. And if your partner will not cooperate with counseling, you need to face the fact that he or she will probably never change, and then decide to try living with him or her the best you can, or move on to a new and hopefully more satisfying relationship. I am all for trying to save relationships, but in the face of repeated hurts and insensitivity, it may be best to move on.
If you want out of your toxic relationship, as described in my book, Why Can’t You Read My Mind?, follow these three steps:
1. Have a mantra. Jean, a forty year old client of mine, tried to leave a relationship with a man who was highly manipulative and emotionally abusive. Each time she attempted to leave, he showed her remorse and lured her back with his charming and seductive displays. This was maddening for Jean who felt demoralized each time after not being able to extricate herself from this coercive, destructive cycle.
To help Jean begin to break free, she came up with a phrase, a mantra of sorts that she repeatedly told herself: “He may be good for someone else, but he is a wrecking ball for me.” Jean paired this mantra with a visualization of a big crane swinging a wrecking ball every time she thought of him or saw him. Read more