There is no such thing as a perfect relationship and every relationship has challenges that can be improved upon. This makes sense because no two people are alike and sharing life’s ups and downs can be frustrating to all of us at times. However, there are those relationships that are troubled more than average. They may be dangerously dysfunctional and staying in them can be harmful for your self-esteem as well as your physical health. So why do so many people stay in a dysfunctional relationship and continue to try to make it work? The reasons are complicated and many, but most of the time couples believe with just a little bit more work or understanding they can resolve their issues and get along. That reasoning works with day-to-day problems, but it won’t work for truly dysfunctional relationships.
If your relationship makes you feel badly about yourself, your life, and your ability as a person, it is likely you are in a dysfunctional relationship. Being aware of these relationships quickly can help you get out of them prior to suffering emotional pain and suffering. Below are types of relationships that are unhealthy and dangerously dysfunctional. You cannot cure these with love.
- The need to dominate and control. A relationship is about sharing your life with another. It is an ability to work together as a team. If one person needs to dominate and control, it is dangerously dysfunctional.
- The need to scream obscenities or point blame at you. If your partner cannot accept blame and instead gets defensive and blaming of you, that is a dangerously dysfunctional person.
- The need to belittle you or make you feel as though you aren’t smart enough, rich enough, or whatever enough to be with them. This is a red flag, pack your bags and leave. This person is not capable of a healthy relationship.
- The need to violate boundaries. If you’re with someone who doesn’t respect your need for privacy or time with friends and family, they will never respect you as their life partner.
- Threats that they are going to leave or never marry you are emotionally abusive and hurtful. Someone who loves you wants you to feel safe and secure…they don’t keep you on edge or make you feel inadequate.
- Anyone who would put you in harm’s way is someone who is dangerously dysfunctional. One of the most primitive behaviors of a relationship is that of protecting your partner. If your partner doesn’t care about your safety, then they will not be mature enough to care about you as a person.
Every day we hear terrible stories of families who were hurt by dangerously dysfunctional partners. Love is supposed to make you feel valued, trusted, cared for and protected. If you find yourself feeling guilty, shamed, scared or worried, it is time to get out of the relationship that is causing you these feelings.