Are You Getting Manipulated in Your Relationship? Here’s How to Say
You’ve met your soul mate, the relationship is going better than you had ever hoped, and you couldn’t be happier. Gradually though, you begin to feel like you’re unable to keep your partner happy no matter what you do and the two of you don’t get along well. Of course, it’s your fault because your partner is the same wonderful person you fell in love with.
This is one classic sign of a manipulative relationship, although there are many others. The following nine signs may indicate that you are in a manipulative relationship:
1. You’re constantly giving in.
in any successful relationship, there has to be give and take between the partners. However, if you are constantly acceding to your partner’s preferences, especially when you’re going against your beliefs or morals, you’re probably being manipulated.
2. You’ve lost your self-confidence.
Your partner is constantly making suggestions on how you can improve yourself, whether in your career, your clothing styles, your choice of friends, or similar. He or she may be manipulating you under the guise of “I only want to help you be your best.” When you’re constantly reminded that you are lacking in many areas, it can wreak havoc on your self-esteem.
3. Dread or anxiety has taken over your life.
Each time that you contemplate asking your partner for a favor or expressing an opinion that is in opposition to his or her opinion, you dread the outcome or you are so nervous about it, you elect to skip it altogether.
You may also dread the favors your partner asks of you because they are often in opposition to what you want to do or what your moral compass permits. You know you’ll give in to his or her demands rather than face the alternative, but you feel miserable because you can’t stand up for yourself.
4. You’re never good enough, no matter what you do.
Your partner’s expectations are impossibly high and keep growing. No matter what you do, it’s never good enough and your partner keeps reminding you that you’re a perpetual disappointment.
5. You’ve become selfish.
According to your partner, you’re exhibiting selfishness when you want or need to do something for yourself, particularly if it’s contrary to his or her desires.
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6. You continually try to justify your actions.
When you pursue a course of action, you feel the need to justify it with your partner because you know they’ll disagree with it. You feel the need to prove that you’re worthwhile.
7. It’s always your fault.
Whenever things go amiss, it’s always your fault. Not only does your partner refuse to accept responsibility for his or her misdeeds, he or she will always place the blame squarely on you.
8. You’re happy only if your partner is happy.
You are so focused on the quality of your partner’s life that you completely ignore the quality of your life. If your partner is happy, then you feel fulfilled whether your needs are met or not.
9. You never know where you stand.
You have a great relationship at night but in the morning, it’s as though you’ve just met. Your partner hints at a more permanent relationship but nothing ever materializes and at times, you feel like he or she is a stranger.
If you feel as though you are in a manipulative relationship, you probably are. An unfortunate consequence of being manipulated is that you’ll learn to distrust others and ultimately, yourself. When the person who is closest to you loses your trust, it can be difficult or impossible for them to regain it. You may learn to distrust your own instincts and therefore never become part of a healthy relationship.
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An article in Psychology Today provides insight on learning how to handle manipulation in any type of relationship. Additional information on recognizing manipulative behaviors and learning how to cope with them can be found at LifeEsteem.org.
Manipulation is emotional abuse. You are entitled to be part of a healthy, happy, loving relationship that is free of abuse and that encourages you to be a better person rather than tears you down. If you are in an abusive relationship, seek help today. Many resources are available both locally and online. It may seem like an arduous task, but the result will be well worth the effort.