How to Break the Toxic Relationship Cycle With Your Crush
We've spent a lot of time talking about toxic relationships.
All toxic relationships take their own form, but you if find that you just can't seem to pull away from your crush, despite the fact that you're both consistently hurting each other, you need to get out. But exactly how do you cut things off when your emotions are all wrapped up in this unhealthy relationship? We might be able to help.
Keep scrolling to learn how to break the toxic relationship cycle with your crush.
1. Recognize the Pattern
While the term "toxic relationship cycle" might sound scary, all it really means is that you've fallen into a pattern of negative behaviors with your crush. Things will be going great one day—you'll both be talking, texting and hanging out consistently—and then suddenly they'll ghost you with no explanation. To get back at them, you start flirting with one of their friends, making them angry and causing an argument. During your argument, you both agree that you care about one another, so you start texting and hanging out, starting the same pattern all over again.
That's just one example of a toxic relationship cycle that can happen with your crush. Of course, the key to getting out of this frustrating situation is first recognizing the negative pattern of behavior. Although it might be obvious to third-party viewers, it can be really hard to identify your toxic cycle when you're in the middle of it. Try to take a step back from your crush and really pinpoint the areas where you relationship seems to go wrong. Once you recognize a pattern, you can focus on changing specific behaviors to interrupt and ultimately end your toxic cycle.
(Gossip Girl via The CW)
2. Understand That Peaks and Valleys Aren't Healthy
Since we all want passionate, emotion-driven relationships, the highs and lows of toxic relationships can sometimes feel intensely romantic. All that time spent crying and fighting with one another must mean that you really care about each other, right? Wrong! Caring about someone means that you don't want to see them hurt.
Anyone who truly cares about your emotions and feelings wouldn't cause the terrible lows that you feel in a toxic relationship, only to give you the high once everything is back to normal. While all relationships go through ups and downs, really awesome peaks followed by very low moments are a sign that someone isn't that empathetic to your feelings, and probably doesn't have the emotional intelligence to treat your relationship with the respect it deserves.
3. Analyze the Highs
Beyond the fact that peaks and valleys aren't healthy, we would also say that the "high" moments in your toxic relationship probably aren't that great. In fact, they likely only seem amazing because you spend so much time feeling so awful.
Before you determine that you can never feel this fantastic with someone else, really analyze the good moments of your relationship. If you really take time to look at it, you might realize that you're wasting all your time on a relationship that barely meets the minimum requirements of decent interaction between two human beings. If you can stop over-inflating your good moments and see them for what they really are, it'll be much easier for you to disengage from your toxic relationship.
(Friends via NBC)
4. Realize It Isn't Worth It
Now comes the hard part—realizing that this toxic relationship with your crush isn't worth it. Sometimes there's hope for breaking the toxic relationship cycle while still holding onto the relationship. It's definitely rare, but it happens.
However, a toxic relationship with your crush has almost no hope of developing into a healthy romance. After all, you two aren't even dating yet and you're already causing each other pain. Someone who puts you through that kind of emotional frustration and distress isn't someone who's going to magically turn around and meet all your needs. Once you accept that this relationship isn't worth it, you'll stop fighting to fix it, which will ultimately contribute to ending your toxic cycle.
5. Remove Yourself
When it comes right down to it, the only way to truly break the toxic cycle with your crush is to remove yourself from the relationship. Of course, you can only do this once you've completed the above step and acknowledged that this romance just isn't worth it. Once you've done that, sit your crush down and tell them that things are over. It's awkward to break up with someone you aren't technically dating, but it will create a final end to your relationship that will establish exactly where you stand, rather than leaving things up in the air.
After that, cut off all contact with your crush. Don't text them, don't hang out with them—you should probably even avoid talking to them for a while. Toxic relationships are almost addictive, so any contact with your crush can encourage you to fall right back into old patterns. You don't have to cut them out of your life forever, but you do need to separate yourself until you genuinely feel like you've moved on from them. Otherwise, you'll probably end up right back where you started.
(The Vampire Diaries via The CW)
6. Ask Your Friends for Help
Toxic relationships are hard to break free from, so don't be ashamed to ask your friends for support. Tell them to keep you accountable and call you out if you start slipping into harmful patterns of behavior with your crush. Of course, your actions are always under your control, but having people around you who support your decision and who want the best for you is an encouraging way to stick to the course and refrain from reigniting things with that person.
On the hunt for more crush advice? Click HERE for the worst times to tell your crush how you feel.