If you have ever felt neglected in a relationship then you may have experienced one or more of the following 5 types of relationships. All of these styles of relationship are toxic in their own way and all of them center around one person having their needs unmet.
These relationships can be romantic attachments, family or even friends. They aren’t restricted to spouses.
These are relationships where the other person is:
- Emotionally unavailable
- Emotionally needy
- Emotionally generous (except when it comes to you)
- Am emotional book-keeper
- The problem-solver
#1 Emotionally Unavailable
Lets explore the first one. As an emotionally unavailable person, they obviously have no intention of being there for you if you ever need them, but they also dislike the intimacy of you being there for them. This is usually a pretty clear case of someone who will never open up to you and who you cannot open up to either.
They’re wading in the shallow end of the pool so usually things are kept at a casual level which means; no meeting family or sometimes even friends; no official dating, just booty calls; light conversation instead of deep and meaningful conversation; they may bring conversations back to jokes or simply turn cold if the conversation gets too personal.
They’ll put minimal effort into maintaining the relationship, even if you both seem to have a lot of fun when you get together. It may take days before they contact you, and the messages will be short and light.
You may feel the need to “be cool” in the relationship, as though having needs somehow makes you “uncool” to be around. This is bullshit.
#2 Emotionally Needy
The second relationship will look like someone who lives a life of high drama usually starring them. There isn’t enough oxygen in the room to fulfill their needs and you’ll be subject to roller-coaster mood swings with little or no explanation on their part.
They won’t see a problem with inflicting a bad mood onto other people and generally take no responsibility for their actions if their emotions can justify it (hint; their emotions always justify it). This person may appeal to your protective streak by playing a victim, or they may evoke your admiration by “overcoming” great odds.
They are never at fault and everyone else is out to get them, or are jealous.
If they never ask about your struggles, or tune out when you do talk about yourself, or somehow redirect the conversation back to their stuff, this is your red flag. Pay attention to it, because this is your future relationship in a nutshell.
#3 Emotionally Generous (except when it comes to you)
This person has chosen you because they see you as an easy relationship which they don’t have to put much work into. They’re looking for a low-maintenance person because they spend so much time people-pleasing outside of the relationship that they have nothing left to give to you.
This person may be a workaholic and very popular with their friends. They will be financially generous and say yes to almost everything. They’ll be insecure in their relationships and are seeking approval from others at any and all cost.
At the end of their exhausting day, you get the scraps and if you ask for more than that, they’ll either shut you out or have a minor breakdown. They rely on you having the patience of a saint, an equally generous nature to supply their friends with every little thing, and will put you in the position of making them choose between you and other people.
Ultimately, you will never be the one they choose.
#4 An Emotional Book-Keeper
This person keeps a running total of every emotional transaction which takes place between you and them. Not only does every nice thing they ever do for you require payment of some form, even when you never asked for it in the first place, but the ledger is always tipped in their favour.
They will constantly collect on their “investment” in any way, shape, or form of their choosing.
This person makes it difficult for you to accept their help or kindness under any circumstances because it inherently comes with a string attached to it.
You are constantly “owing” them and cannot escape the emotional debt you were coerced into. The only way to maintain this relationship is to reject societal norms of reciprocation and to become as mercenary as they are. Otherwise, you cannot accept anything from them under any circumstances, which defeats the purpose of having a friend or partner.
#5 The Fixer
They don’t have a problem, you’ve got a problem. You need to be fixed, and they’re just the person to do it.
This individual shows no vulnerability of their own and demands that you also have no vulnerabilities. Instead, they pick apart everything about you which isn’t up to scratch and suggest ways upon which you can be improved.
If you cannot meet their expectations, you will be belittled, criticized and judged as unworthy. In no way are you acceptable as you are, especially because they’re so incredibly perfect in comparison.
Keep a look out in the early stages of dating for any comments about other people not being smart enough, or fit enough, or successful enough. If they are hyper-critical of others around them, you’ll be in their cross-hairs too and no amount of trying to prove yourself is going to be enough.
What You Really Need in Relationships
Obviously, these relationships are unhealthy, whether you’re the one guilty of the above or have been on the receiving end of it. They cannot provide mutual benefit.
What we all should be striving for in relationships is allowing each other to have imperfections, vulnerabilities, emotional needs, and self-worth. Relationships are supposed to be reciprocal for the mutual benefit of each party. They enrich your life, rather than depleting it.
We can’t be endlessly self-less any more than we can be endlessly selfish. So if another person is happy to take as much as they want, but are never there for you when you need them, they aren’t a true friend. If they set unreasonable demands for you to become “worthy” then they aren’t your friend. If they never let you provide support, then they are not your friend.
IT IS NOT UNREASONABLE FOR YOU TO HAVE NEEDS.
IT IS NOT SELFISH FOR YOUR NEEDS TO BE FULFILLED.
YOU ARE WORTHY OF LOVE; ALWAYS.
LOVE IS NOT A TRANSACTION.
LOVE SEES YOU, HEARS YOU, HONORS YOU, AND LOOKS OUT FOR YOU.
If you find yourself providing all of this to someone and never getting it back, that person is a bad friend. It isn’t your job to be a martyr to someone else’s feelings over your own.
Don’t just take someone’s word that they care, pay attention to their actions and read between the lines when they talk about others to you. Generally, a person will always reveal their true character, even in the early phases, if you’re paying attention.
Your time and energy is precious, so never waste it on a dead-end relationship.