Toxic Relationships – Serving A Life Sentence

Toxic  adjective

containing or being poisonous material especially when capable of causing death or serious debilitation

Relationship noun

the relation connecting or binding participants in a relationship

Longevity does not equate to success. A married couple may celebrate their 40th wedding anniversary, friends around them pass on congratulatory remarks and the marriage in public opinion is a success.

What happens behind closed doors in the private lives of  those couples? The door slam of privacy  is more affecting than the smile given to the public. They live a life cuffed whether  they can see it or not.

What happens is this:

  • A husband quashes his wife’s remarks, opinions and friends. She may have valid points and caring  friends but they are devalued by the husband.

What’s really going on?

  • The workaholic  husband is co-dependent on his wife because he needs his “better” opinions and remarks listened by her to esteem his own “Pride.”

What happens is this:

  • The wife has heard forty years of this, knowing she is devalued and attempts to give time to household tasks and activities. It goes unnoticed by the husband as another “standard routine.”

What’s really going on?

  • The wife is crying out for positive affirmation as she can not feed herself. The husband does not recognise effort for task activity because he sees himself as the main “breadwinner” of the family. He could do these better.



The list can go on. There are countless marriages and long term relationships that are toxic. They are codependent on each other and when children become involved in the toxic atmosphere of parents, distrust happens and takes place. The child becomes a therapist for their parents with their toxicity and no longer views them as parents but an older adult that they have known all their life. Children and adult children listen to the parents anger towards each other but it doesn’t need to be shared.

The parents cry out for their own independence but are still dependent on their own children. An example could be an independent child tells their parents that they’re getting a blocked nose. Casual conversation. The codependent parent needed to hear that because the next time they see the child, medicine is purchased for them. You can argue that is kindness, but  for what purpose is it serving? The parent’s need for esteem and to be called a ‘rescuer’?  A need to be wanted and depended upon is serviced.

Toxic relationships are deadly and need to end. They need to be addressed, it is sad the 40 year marriages don’t want to see it  and choose to live with toxicity. They’ve become immune to it. They push loved ones away from them because of the distrust of what the parent’s relationship has created.   Sometimes I’d say a divorce in some circumstances is better or an alternative is  in the words of Michael Jackson, “Look at the man in the mirror.”




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