Like so many of you, I had no idea what the difference was between healthy love and narcissistic love.
But now I know, so let me explain to you in detail the four top signs to look out for in an unhealthy relationship and how they play out.
Because it’s vital for you to know what you are looking for and aiming for.
In this latest Thriver TV episode I will teach you how to move up and out of the patterns of abusive relationships, so you are ready to explore relationships of health and union.
A lot of you have been asking me to do a Thriver TV episode on this topic.
I know how important it is to cover this topic, because like so many others, I used to have no idea about the difference between healthy love and narcissistic love!
I know how important it is to get very clear about this so that you will never accept unhealthy love again.
Also, it’s vital to know what you are looking for and aiming for because unless you know where you are going you can end up at a completely different destination.
Okay, so before we get started on this really important topic, I’d just like to say thank you for subscribing to the Thriver Mission and connecting to the truth that it is possible to heal for real from narcissistic abuse, in ways and in timeframes that we didn’t believe possible.
And, I’d love to remind you that if you haven’t yet subscribed to my channel, please do!
Okay, on with today’s episode … starting off with unhealthy relationships.
The Signs of An Unhealthy Relationship
Number One: Invalidation
The biggest thing I believe that is consistent in unhealthy relationships is that you are invalidated.
Meaning, this person is not interested in what you feel or say, or disrupts you, or tells you that you are “wrong” if you are hurt or upset about something.
Or maybe they just stonewall or abandon you when you try to have a discussion with them.
The firm message is this, “Your feelings don’t matter to me.”
Mind you, it is important as an evolving, mature adult to be able to speak up in healthy ways – with calmness and truth and the desire to air what needs to be said in ways that are healthy. If your desire is to bring about a greater understanding and improvement for your relationship rather than attacking it, then it’s vital to communicate healthily. It’s important to understand that.
Of course, if you are attacking someone, they are going to retaliate defensively.
But please don’t confuse this with when you have had enough and you are so triggered, hurt, abused and angry that you are not expressing yourself healthily at all. You are human. If you are enmeshed with and being abused by someone who is sick, you will get very sick.
What else do you think would happen?
Sadly, in our narcissistic relationships, it wouldn’t have mattered how we approached this person, because narcissists are not concerned with your feelings, values or rights at all. It’s all purely about him or her.
You will feel unheard, unmet, dismissed, or attacked as a result of trying to speak up about your rights in a relationship.
Number Two: Blames You
If you are in a relationship with someone toxic, they will not take responsibility for their behaviours and actions.
Typically, this person won’t apologise, or if they do the apology comes far too late, is a backhanded apology that isn’t an apology at all, or is used as a method to try to hoover you back in when nothing else has worked.
Apologies without remorse and a commitment to rectify the damage created is not an apology. These are only words without the actions that mean they are genuine.
Unhealthy relationships are those where conversations and arguments turn into circular mayhem.
Blame throwing and diversions happen through the following tactics – projecting onto you what that person does themselves, going off-topic regarding something that you do, bringing in allies real or fabricated to discredit you, pathological lying about events, and making childish and irrational justifications and excuses to try to spin it back onto you.
As well as so many more of these out of bounds tactics, that destroy trust in a relationship.
In these relationships you may find that you are taking on way too much of the blame, hoping that by apologising and trying to please this person, that they will treat you better. It’s a bottomless pit. You accepting responsibility or upping your efforts to try to make the relationship healthier will not work.
Number Three: Inconsideration
Toxic relationships lack care.
Meaning, there is a lack of empathy and conscience. There is an inability to comprehend how words and actions affect another.
And, going back to being “invalidated” (sign Number One) when this person steps on your toes and hurts you in ways that can be downright cruel and horrific, it is likely that your reaction will bring even more abuse upon you.
People who express inconsideration for others lack integrity and moral code. They just don’t care!
I know that so many of us tried to explain decent basic human conduct fundaments to people who simply didn’t get it and refused to get it. Or, if they supposedly did, eventually after days or weeks of us lecturing or prescribing to them, they then serially and seriously reoffended.
The truth that you really need to accept is this – somebody’s character is somebody’s character.
If you’re in a relationship with somebody who is inconsiderate and doesn’t have the resources or the desire to care for you, then you are in an unhealthy relationship.
Number Four: Grossly Conditional Love
In every relationship, there are times when you may not particularly like a person, but you still love them.
A toxic relationship is categorised with a person being “black” and “white”. They either gush all over you or they hate you.
When they get from you what they want, then they are decent, or maybe even overtly expressing their idealised love of you, but when they don’t, on a hairline trigger, they can decide that the relationship needs to be over.
This is not mature and healthy love at all. It means that you’re walking on broken glass and you never know when the rug is going to be pulled out from underneath you.
Also, you’ll be suffering the absolute devastation of the rollercoaster of feeling loved up and secure one minute and discarded and devastated the next.
This is no way to live and be loved.
Now, in stark contrast let’s explore Healthy Love.
The Signs of A Healthy Relationship
Number One: Validation
In a healthy relationship, this person is interested in you and cares for your feelings.
Healthy relationships seek partnership, understanding, solution and evolution together into an even greater mutuality, connection and teamwork.
This is a relationship striving for being honest regarding feelings and needs, and inviting the other partner to do the same.
If you are open to hearing what another person needs from you, which is essential in a healthy relationship, then it’s up to you to have healthy boundaries and feel into whether or not this is healthy or a violation of your boundaries.
Of course, abusers are going to express feelings and desires that are completely skewered, unreasonable and highly abusive of you. If you have done enough healing work on yourself then you can hear this person out and decide whether this is a match for your life and truth.
We need to be really honest with ourselves. If we are in a relationship with somebody whose needs are abusive, and stay with them, then we are abusing ourselves.
You see, this is the thing. When you have committed to your Thriver Healing, to move up and out of patterns of abusive relationships, you are ready to explore relationships of health and union.
Number Two: Honesty and Responsibility
Again, it’s very important to communicate lovingly, when you are having the difficult conversations with somebody you love.
Maybe, you may need to give them some space and time to process what you’ve said. If you are in a relationship with somebody with a good character, they will be honest with you. They will take responsibility for their actions and behaviours.
No one is perfect. You are not perfect. There are times in relationships where you will not be your best self, and neither will the other person. The difference in healthy relationships is that both partners and parties will be honest, they can take responsibility and apologise.
It’s so important to understand that a timely and genuine apology is vital to settle somebody else’s feelings, and allow them to feel safe, and for a relationship to strengthen with trust and love.
Healthy relationships have the ability to progress and grow in this way.
This is in complete opposition to relationships where this just is not possible.
Number Three: Consideration
In healthy relationships people care, individuals are respected, revered and supported.
You can have differences of opinions together, because the love that you have for that person, and they for you, is greater than the conversation at hand.
You are both happy for the other person to be happy. Support is expressed towards the other person’s dreams and goals.
What is important to your partner is important to you, just as you are to them.
In abusive relationships, this person does not want you to be happy at all and is not supportive of things that take your attention away from them being the centre of your universe.
Can you see the enormous difference?
Number Four: Unconditional Love
So this means that rather than the black and white ability to love somebody one moment then throw them aside the next, is that you have the compassion, the love, to be able to accept that this person does love you, that they do have your best interest at heart and that you are working together to heal each other’s wounds.
And a huge part of unconditional love for another person is the unconditional love that you have for yourself. That when you are triggered, rather than looking outside and blaming that person, that you come inwards to do the loving, self-partnering and healing of yourself.
Because when you can self-partner yourself in this way, then you have the ability to partner that person in the same way as well. And if you have relationships with both people working at unconditional love and acceptance of themselves, then they are so much more likely to do that journey with another as well.
You Have to Be the Person to Generate This
To have a healthy relationship you need to be really honest with yourself, just as I had to be with myself.
Stop asking the questions such as, “Where will I meet somebody like this to have a healthy relationship with?” or, “Which dating site should I get on to try to find somebody who is healthy?”
I used to fall into all those traps too, before my own serious and dedicated inner healing and development.
I really want you to know, that it is incredibly difficult for you to have a healthy relationship until you get really healthy in the relationship with yourself. Which means that you apply all of these three signs, validation, honesty and responsibility, and consideration to yourself first.
This requires self-partnering, and meeting and healing your own painful feelings, and previous emotional traumas, and being really honest with yourself regarding what it is that you need to heal within you.
Such a big part of this inner development is the growing up to know that we are responsible for our own validation, love, care and boundaries.
These things are not somebody else’s job. It’s up to us to say, “Yes I will accept this level of relationship” or, “No I won’t” in regard to another, rather than trying to force people with poor characters to give us what we need to feel loved and safe.
If we do this, we are leading from our own unhealed inner traumas, which inevitably keep us rolling around with the people and relationships that match “more of” these unhealed traumas. You will unconsciously choose and participate in relationships that feel familiar to you, ones that invalidate and hurt you.
But the only way (it’s so important) to break free from these patterns is to take a break from relationships and heal your inner traumas, before seeking an intimate partner again.
Then, you will never again try to make unmakeable deals work, handing your power away with people who are abusing you.
Then I promise you, just as I did myself, you will get very clear about what a healthy relationship is because you are already living that yourself.
And I’m so thrilled to report that I am in a conscious, loving and supportive relationship with a beautiful man. I never would have been able to enter and retain a relationship at this level unless I did the serious work on myself. I would never even have been able to recognise a relationship like this, let alone navigate and grow with it.
Because truly, previous to that, I was a total relationship disaster!
So, I know that there is so much hope for you, to be able to seek out and experience healthy love.
I’m totally looking forward to a wonderful conversation about this topic with you below.
Did you miss our previous article…