Let’s Leave The Toxicity Behind



Let’s Leave The Toxicity Behind

Written By: Hephzibah Adesina 

Art By: Qhamanande Maswana


Lil Nas X tweeted, "I don't care how toxic you are or how wrong you have done me. If I ever feel lonely, I'm coming back running like my fault, baby, I was overreacting wanna try again?"


After reading this, I took about five minutes to roll my eyes. I don't fully understand why, socially, we have chosen to idolize toxicity in romantic relationships. In my adult years, I've noticed how normalized unhealthy relationships are. The more frequently couples cycle back and forth between being together and being apart, the more their relationships tend to deteriorate, involving negative interactions, less satisfaction, and less commitment (Dailey et al., 2009a). The idea of running back and forth, to and from someone you openly claim is "toxic" due to loneliness is, to me, a sign of emotional abuse.

Unhealthy relationships can be characterized by:

  • Verbal aggression

  • Intimidation

  • Manipulation

  • Humiliation

  • Degrading another person's identity, dignity, and self-worth

These behaviors usually result in:

  • Anxiety

  • Depression

  • Suicidal thoughts or behaviors

  • Heartbreak

  • Post-traumatic stress disorder

I get it, "Red is a pretty color." You want that "happily ever after" kind of love. So, when someone comes along and promises you a forever thing, you embrace it – even though they have shown you multiple toxic traits, disregarded your feelings, and disrespected you, their "lover." You unintentionally revise – negatively – your perfect man list so that you can quickly run down the aisle and say your "I do" and "'til death do us part."


Before your "I do" and "'til death do us part," I want to point out the fine (not so fine) print on that marriage certificate. It says, “A toxic romantic relationship with an emotional abuser. Signing this may be detrimental to your health.”


Heartbreak can result from such relationships. Heartbreak is severe and, in some cases, can cause short-term heart muscle failure. Before heading back to your ex, evaluate the relationship. Does it leave you wanting? Have you both taken advantage of the time away for the betterment of your relationship? Be honest with yourself. Don't think about what the relationship could be, but think about what the relationship is.


Love is a great thing. We need to surround ourselves with emotionally healthy relationships, positive relationships that make us feel happy for the connection and uplift all parties involved.


References

Dailey, R. M., Pfiester, A., Jin, B., Beck, G., & Clark, G. (2009a). On‐again/off‐again dating relationships: How are they different from other dating relationships?. Personal Relationships16, 23-47. 

“Is Broken Heart Syndrome Real” Heart, 18 Jan. 2021, http://www.heart.org/en/health-topics/cardiomyopathy/what-is-cardiomyopathy-in-adults/is-broken-heart-syndrome-real.