Your relationship might be terrible for your mental health. Watch out for these 5 subtle signs

Published on:9 January 2020, 19:04pm IST
Love can defo drive us crazy and quite literally so. If you've started observing signs of an unhealthy relationship, it's time you do something about them.
Sonakshi Kohli
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If your relationship isn’t your ‘happy place’, things need to get right. GIF courtesy: GIPHY

Love and relationships are complicated. But what makes them even more difficult is being with someone, who is nothing but toxicity in the guise of a “loving” partner.

Surely, it can take some time and a lot of thinking to figure out that your partner is simply ruining your mental health. But here are five subtle signs that you can try matching according to the award-winning clinical psychotherapist and relationship counsellor, Aparna Samuel Balasundaram.

1. He is “too protective”
Ladies, there’s a thin line between caring and toxic possessiveness or a controlling attitude. Hence, if he calls you to ask how your day went or if you’re doing fine, consider that all’s well in your paradise.

However, if those calls are to interrogate you about your whereabouts, that too very frequently, you’ve got to be careful.

“Sometimes, you might mistake this behaviour for love or care from your partner’s side, but it could be a part of his controlling nature,” Balasundaram warns.

2. He gaslights you
She even points out at a rather unnoticeable phenomenon called ‘gaslighting’ in relationships, wherein, your manipulative partner can convince you to question your own memory.

For instance, you could have been hanging out with a friend for, say, an hour by the clock, but he could make you doubt that by reinforcing with conviction that you took as long as 3 hours.

In the end, you might just start doubting your own self, if nothing else.

3. It’s all about him, all the time
The fact that you feel overtly responsible for your partner’s wellbeing and happiness is yet another sign of a toxic relationship that can hamper your mental health, according to Balasundaram.

Additionally, if you place his needs above yours, it can pose a problem too.

“Sometimes, you may end up giving up a huge part of your identity and core values just to please your partner. You may even end up making too many compromises for him, often without any reciprocation from his side,” she says.

“This, in the long run, can lead to a loss of self-identity and ruin your mental health,” she adds.

Also read: Is Instagram wrecking your romantic relationships? Take this quiz to find out

4. You guys have too many fights and arguments
Fights don’t just ruin your mood, they can ruin your mental health too.

“You could become anxious, have a disturbed sleeping pattern, or resort to emotional eating when upset because of fights with your partner,” Balasundaram points out.

Needless to say, if this happens quite often, beware!

signs of unhealthy relationship
Too many fights in a relationship can lead to extreme unhappiness.
GIF courtesy: GIPHY

5. He’s critical of you
While constructive criticism can help you improve yourself, criticism that’s meant to pull you down can negatively impact your self-esteem and confidence, according to Balasundaram.

“Comments like ‘you look fat in this dress’, ‘I don’t like the way you’ve tied your hair’, ‘I hate what you’re wearing’, from your partner are surely warning signs, which are not meant to be ignored,” she says.

So, what should you do about it?
If you could relate to the signs talked-about above, here’s what you can do to protect yourself from falling into the trap.

  • Introspect and be aware
    Balasundaram suggests analysing your relationship and your partner’s attitude towards you and be conscious of what’s actually happening with you in the relationship.
  • Seek help from your friends
    Reliable and trustworthy friends, who’ve known you since before you got involved with your partner, can tell you exactly how you’ve changed after getting into this relationship of yours.
    If you hear them talk about how submissive they think you’re in front of your partner or how dull you’ve become ever since you met him, do take it seriously.
  • Ask yourself if it’s worth the pain
    All the sacrifices, the compromises, the loss of sense of self, and the mental torture—is any relationship worth all this? Surely, the fear of being lonely is real, but nothing’s worth ruining your mental health for, according to Balasundaram.

So, give it a thought and make an informed decision for yourself.

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Sonakshi Kohli Sonakshi Kohli

Twenty kilos down and struggling to maintain the weight loss by preaching healthy eating, while eating unhealthy every now and then.