Young women report the highest levels of emotional abuse, according to the National Center for Biotechnology Information. Some underestimate the power of emotional abuse, stating, “Well, at least it isn’t physical.” But, the psychology community might argue emotional abuse has longer-lasting effects than physical abuse. Women who are emotionally abused are more likely to report feeling isolation and despair and even more likely to develop chronic illnesses than those in physically abusive relationships. That means that ultimately, emotional abuse can become a physical problem even if no one ever lays hands on you.
If you are in an emotionally abusive relationship, you may have come to call it something a little more trendy – something that sounds a little lighter. Toxic. It’s a popular word used to describe what are, ultimately, emotionally abusive relationships. Toxic relationships are still not to be taken lightly.
If you’ve been in a toxic relationship for a while, you’ll likely reach the point of delusion that a lot of toxic couples do: the we can fix this point. They want to go to therapy – individual and couples. They think they can both enter love and sex anonymous groups and get into meditation. They think they can make this toxic relationship healthy, while in it. But here’s why that doesn’t work.
You need a new foundation
If this is a truly toxic relationship – the kind where you’ve yelled at each other, called each other nasty names, slammed doors, thrown plates and broken up/gotten back together a hundred times – the foundation is crumbling. Actually, there is no foundation. Some couples have many happy years together and hit a rough patch, but the long, healthy years before provided a foundation. They could make it through the rough patch, because they had that foundation. Toxic couples are often fighting from day one. The relationship is built on toxic, abusive behaviors. Foundation is everything, and a relationship can’t survive on one that’s built on name-calling, yelling, and overall abuse. That would be like trying to build a house on an active earthquake.