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No one wants to enter a toxic relationship – especially if you already walked down the aisle. You want to believe that your spouse has the right intentions and loves you unconditionally. However, there are some circumstances where marriages take a turn for the worst.

Some partners show their true colors after they get married, and it’s important to know which behaviors are truly detrimental to you and your relationship. But how do you know your marriage is toxic?

How to recognize a toxic relationship

Most people assume they would recognize a toxic relationship if they were in one. However, most people deny the problematic behaviors or miss the subtle signs from a toxic partner, including:

  • They isolate you from friends and family – Every spouse should have the freedom to see their loved ones, but what happens if your partner prohibits you from seeing them? It shows that they are trying to control you and keep you to themselves.
  • Your arguments turn nasty quickly – Most married couples fight; it always happens eventually. But you probably notice the fights with your significant others are downright mean. It’s not rare to hear intentionally hurtful things during your arguments.
  • They hold affection from you – Whether it’s verbal or physical, your partner may try to control you by holding back on physical or emotional affection. It makes you feel like you have to beg to hear compliments or to hold their hand.
  • They criticize your decisions – We all want a partner who supports us through all our decisions, even if they don’t agree with them. However, you notice your partner is critical of all your choices and demeans you when you disagree with them.
  • You lie about your relationship to others – Whether it’s with family, friends or just peers, you find yourself lying about your partner to make them seem more lovable or acceptable. But if you are constantly lying about the status of your marriage, it’s a sign that it is hitting an ending point.
  • You fantasize about leaving your marriage – You may find yourself glancing through available apartments or imagining a life without your partner consistently. You are already preparing yourself to leave, but you aren’t taking any action to do so.

There are even more signs of a toxic relationship, and you must recognize the red flags and seek help if necessary. Talk to a friend, family member or therapist to help you leave your marriage and find the right path for you.