Do you find yourself in a relationship, situationship, dating, or “talking” to someone that you care deeply about who is engaging in toxic behaviour?
Maybe they are distant and emotionally unavailable. Maybe they are manipulative and controlling. Maybe they are lazy and expect you to put in all the work. Maybe they are leaving you on read and ignoring you for days at a time.
Whatever the case may be, I invite you to think about your situation. Have you expressed what you needed to change? Have you told them how the behaviour was impacting you?
If you answered yes to those questions, ask yourself if they have made an effort to step up.
If they apologized and promised to do better, but nothing ever changed… that is manipulation. If rather than taking accountability for the issue that you raised, they got defensive and deflected blame onto you instead… that is projection. If they denied your perspective entirely, said you were being too sensitive, that you are crazy, that you were making it up, that the experience you described didn’t happen… that is gaslighting.
It’s all toxic AF.
Now I’m not saying that person is bad or toxic. I personally strongly dislike the overuse of the word “toxic” as it applies to people. No person is inherently toxic, it is their behaviour that makes someone toxic to others. Because we are all very different, what is toxic for one person may be just what another needs. That is why I don’t believe in labeling any person “toxic”, though they can still be toxic FOR YOU.
That said, if you find yourself in a situation with someone that fits into any of what I just described above… please stop waiting around hoping for them to change their behaviour. I truly believe that everyone is capable of change, but they have to want it and choose it for themselves. If they’ve shown you time and time again that they aren’t willing to change their behaviour when you’ve clearly defined what you need, believe that.
Do yourself a favor. Walk away.
If they truly valued you, their fear of losing you would be strong enough to push them to step up. If that isn’t happening, nothing you say or do is going to change that.
At a certain point we have to stop asking why they continue with the behaviour they know is hurting us and start asking ourselves why we are allowing it. We have to stop blaming ourselves and wondering what we could do differently to be enough for them to want to change. The truth is we’re already enough. It is due to their own internal struggle, not us.
You don’t need to lower your expectations because what you’re asking is a level of effort they are unwilling to invest to keep you. You’re not asking for too much, you are likely just asking the wrong person.
I know that hurts to accept. It fucking sucks. It doesn’t get any less painful the longer you wait around though, trust me. Choose yourself. Walk away so you have the opportunity to find the person that will care about you enough to put in the effort.
You’re worth it 💖