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As your relationship with a new person in your life has developed, you find your old friends falling away, while family members remark on how you don’t seem like yourself.
Are you losing yourself to an odd, and ultimately destructive, relationship?
Before you can regain your individuality and strength, you’ll need to determine if the relationship is taking something away, and, if so, put an end to the destructive cycle.
While the steps are directed towards romantic relationships, they do apply to any kind of relationship. Evaluate honestly: Is this relationship healthy, or is it unhealthy?
Be objective as you analyze how things have changed since this relationship began: * Are you enjoying elevated esteem from your friends & family, or are they looking at you sideways?
Are your family relationships suddenly filled with tension, every time your partner’s name comes up?
While stressed relationships with others aren’t a sure sign of an unhealthy romance, red flags should go up if everyone who cares about you is getting worried or is being pushed away. Are you doing things you wouldn’t ordinarily do (like drinking or drugs)?
Are you obsessing about activities that require you to be alone (any time you can’t be with your love)?
Have all the goals and activities that previously defined you suddenly been pushed to the back burner for no reason other than that your love is not into them?
Deferring your future (that means quitting school or blowing off a good job so you can spend more time together) is a sign you are becoming unhealthily dependent on this person (usually a result of being systematically isolated from family and friends from before you got involved). In fact, in can be necessary and good; however, it does make one “temporarily insane” for the first part of a relationship.
* Does this person bring out your best, or worst traits? Sometimes our starry-eyed affection can make us willfully close our eyes to warning signals, even though we really kind of know that our friends and family have a point when they say they don’t like this or that about the significant other.
Do you feed each others’ best self, or have you seen your attitudes change to more closely mirror your partner’s, which puts off your family and friends? Ask yourself: Do you find yourself apologizing or defending your significant other’s behavior? “Oh, he went through a terrible relationship before and has some issues…
you can understand…” If you find yourself getting defensive when someone questions your relationship, you’re probably already aware that there is a problem and haven’t yet come to terms with it.