What if I’m the problem?
But what if I’m the problem?
There’s absolutely nothing wrong with self-reflection and discovering some things about yourself. On the other hand, treating people badly and doing nothing about is an issue that you should probably check out, and maybe even get some help with.
Our Know the Line campaign mainly focuses on victims of relationship abuse and how they can get help. We post stories, share the signs and much more to raise awareness and prevent it from being an issue in younger teenage relationships. This blog is a little different to that. Have you ever come across some of the signs and noticed you tick a few of the boxes?
This is not a blog about excusing yourself as being an abuser, but how you can make your relationships less problematic by realising that maybe you do have some small traits of toxic behaviour in you, and how you can prevent it and try and be more chilled.
Here are some small things you maybe do, but don’t realise and are actually pretty bad:
- ‘I’m just bossy – it can’t be helped’
There’s a very fine line between ‘just being a bit bossy’ and being over controlling. Controlling is a mind set that makes you think you have power over someone else – this should not be the case. People should be able to make their own decisions whether they’re in a relationship or not and should not be made to be someone else’s puppet. Not only can doing this damage the relationship but can also drive people away to the point where they don’t want to be around you anymore.
- ‘My way or the highway’.
Getting your own way is not something to be proud of. In an ideal world, everyone would get what they wanted, but its not like that, especially in relationships. Compromising is key for a healthy relationship. Whether this be about where you’re going to eat, or what you spend your day doing, you must come to a decision that both of you are happy with. If you use manipulation or controlling behaviour to do it, then you are showing toxic behaviour.
- ‘Privacy? What’s that?’
We all get curious sometimes, we can’t deny it, but it’s not worth breaking the trust in a relationship. If you have concerns, talk to them about it. An honest partner will talk to you about your worries and make them disappear. Communication is so important. If nothing can stop you from snooping, and you see it as a form of ownership, you maybe need to get some help, and rethink the relationship for the sake of you both.
- ‘I just want them to be perfect!’
Stop. Let people be who they want to be. Trying to turn someone into someone they’re not will only leave you both disappointed. A strong couple would communicate and ask for advice on life choices, and you’re welcome to give your opinion, but not to tell them what to do or live their life. Even down to choosing what they wear – let your partner express themselves in their own way. It’s tough enough trying to find out who you are without someone else trying to mould you into their ideal boyfriend/girlfriend.
- ‘I don’t need to tell them how I feel, they can work it out for themselves’
It doesn’t hurt to tell your partner how you feel about them, or compliment them, or just give them some words of reassurance. What does hurt though, is being emotionally distant and not being open with them. This is called ‘withholding’ and it is a toxic trait and a form of emotional manipulation. The whole point of a relationship is to love and support each other – little words of encouragement can really brighten someone’s day.
- ‘Sometimes I just lose control and lash out’
Under no circumstances is it ever okay to demonstrate abusive behaviour – whether that be physical, emotionally or even financially. It’s never okay to hit, slap, or hurt anyone in anyway, and hurting people emotionally with words is just as painful. If you can’t see this, then you need help straight away. Don’t go near the person you’re hurting if you don’t think you can help yourself. You’re a danger to them and to yourself and you need to get it sorted. Abuse is never okay, and anger is never an excuse. This is about as toxic as it gets.
Do any, or all, of these signs sound familiar? If they do, don’t just try and forget about them or push them to the back of your mind. You need to accept that fact that maybe you might be the problem and need to get help. Talk to friends, family, your partner and see if they’ve noticed any of this. It may be hard to hear, but at least you can understand things a little better and try to acknowledge this in your current or future relationships. Recognising it is a big step, and getting help gets you one step closer to that healthy and happy relationship!
You can find some more signs here: http://elitedai.ly/2FHDvNG
There are a few people you can call for help, advice, and support such as Childline and other services you can find on our website here: https://gybhull.com/know-the-line/#gethelp
If you think your relationship could put yourself in immediate danger, always call 999 and help will be with you as soon as possible.
If you want to speak to the local Police on a non-emergency situation, you can talk to them on 101.