10 Toxic Relationship Habits You Need To Give Up Right Now

Navigating relationships is largely trial and error. We’re not given a definitive guide or concrete blueprints that will lead us to a happy ending. Instead, we’re fueled by natural instincts and emotions and, from time to time, we tend to exhibit some pretty toxic tendencies. If you want to make your relationship last, it’s time you give up these harmful habits:

  1. Trying to improve him.  You don’t want someone to come along and try to change you, so why is it okay for you to try and “improve” him? Sure, he has some awful habits that you’d like to see disappear, but reshaping his persona is another story entirely. Gentle reminders to clean his beard trimmings from the sink are acceptable; constant nagging to transform your shy guy into someone loud and outgoing isn’t. Remember, there’s no such thing as perfect — stop trying to mold your partner into your definition of it.
  2. Avoiding confrontation. No one likes arguing with the person, they love but sometimes you’ve just got to sort some stuff out. When a friend says, “We honestly never disagree or argue,” she’s either full of crap or her relationship is about to implode. In healthy relationships, disagreements happen and it’s critical that you know how to compromise and talk things out.
  3. Holding grudges. We all make mistakes and it’s important to forgive each other for them. When you hold a grudge, you allow that issue to fill the space between you two, pushing you further apart.
  4. Shutting down. Your boyfriend’s not psychic. When you two run into an issue, you can’t just shut down and keep everything bottled up. Learn how to open up to each other and work through the hard times together.
  5. Keeping a scorecard. Relationships are about give and take, but your happiness will take a nosedive fast if you’re adamant about keeping track of every single thing you do. Tear up the scorecard and you’ll instantly erase the tension.
  6. Snooping around. Trust is the foundation of every strong relationship. Spying and snooping around proves that you don’t respect his privacy and that’s usually a huge dealbreaker. Do you not trust him? Is it your own issues that are driving you to dig? If you feel the need to snoop, consider what’s really at the root of the problem.
  7. Comparing to past relationships. New relationships are a fresh start — don’t bring baggage from your past boyfriends with you. The worst thing you can do is hold an ex over your partner’s head, constantly pushing them to live up to petty expectations.
  8. Making him your entire world. In every relationship, you have to make some sacrifices. I’m talking little things like giving up garlic because your boyfriend’s allergic or watching alien movies after he sits through a chick flick. Letting your world revolve around him, though, is undoubtedly toxic. You should never have to forfeit your own dreams, values, ambitions and personal relationships in order to make him happy.
  9. Taking him for granted. When you’re caught up in the day-to-day and the sweet little things he does become routine, it’s easy to make the mistake of taking him for granted. Put in effort to continuously recognize why you love him and regularly express gratitude.
  10. Complaining to everyone but him. I get it — we all need to vent from time to time. My biggest pet peeve, though, is when I hear women complaining about their significant other to everyone but him. You need to recognize that you’re only making the issue worse and turning it into something that will be pretty impossible to resolve. Treat him with the same respect that you expect and work things out without the bystanders.
Kait is a freelance writer and digital marketing coordinator living in Toronto. She's the founder and managing of Spark Social Agency. You can find her on Twitter @kaitshiels.