Alright everyone, it’s time to get a wee bit more personal than usual. It’s a given at this point that there is no such thing as a “perfect” or “normal” relationship. And when I say relationship, I am including spouses, family, friends, coworkers, etc. We all have our quirks and disagreements, but when do you know if the relationships you’re surrounded by are toxic for your own well-being? It’s one of the hardest things to admit that there is a problem, and that you may need to distance, or even remove yourself from the situation entirely. This is something that I personally have struggled with, and am still working every day to maintain a boundary with those unhealthy people.
Have you ever heard the term “codependent”? Well, a codependent is someone who enables the unhealthy, which can be a very exhausting, and unrewarding way of living. This can mean that they are either supporting someone’s bad behaviors or constantly granting them excuses for their wrongs, enabling an addiction/mental illness, or simply just doing and saying what you need to, to keep the other person calm and happy. That being said, being a codependent does NOT make you a bad person. You’re usually trying to find the best in the people that may be dragging you through the mud, and trying to help or “save” them. Most times, they are not looking for help, they’re not looking to be “saved”; they’re looking for chaos. Something I’ve learned over the years is that you cannot save someone who doesn’t want to be saved. We are not in control of other people’s lives (and if you’re anything like me, this is one of the hardest to keep reminding yourself).
So what can you do?
1. Tell somebody! If you have even the slightest feeling that you may be involved in an unhealthy, toxic relationship, one of the most important things you can do for yourself is tell somebody you trust (that is NOT involved in the relationship). This can be a family member, friend, coworker, or reach out for professional help (counseling, your doctor, etc.). It IS healthy to accept help from others; it is most definitely NOT a sign of weakness.
2. Distance yourself.
It’s never an easy task distancing yourself from someone you care a lot about. This is especially hard when it is a family member, but it is important for your own well-being to create a boundary when you find yourself in a roller-coaster relationship, with more dips than hills. It IS
okay to tell someone “no”, and you do not need to explain yourself to anyone. I promise you, it’s not as hard or impossible as it sounds!
3. Take care of YOURSELF. That’s right, when was the last time you did something solely for your own benefit? This can be exercise, art, music, taking a spa day, the possibilities are endless! Take a step back and evaluate, are you happy? It IS okay to be selfish sometimes, especially when you have spent so much time being selfless to make someone ELSE happy. Remember, your self-worth should be coming from internal sources, not those around you.
**If you or someone you care about suspects that they may be in an unhealthy relationship, please visit: Help Someone in an Unhealthy Relationship: Quick tips
Clinic Coordinator Assistant
Physical Therapy Consultants
PTC_therapy October 5th, 2016
Posted In: General