They say that hindsight is 20-20, and looking back on past relationships, it is often easier to see the things that you overlooked at the time, but now seem so wrong about your partner’s behavior.
Although emotions are normal, a healthy relationship does not cause hurt, fear or anger on a regular basis. It might be time to take a step back and reevaluate your relationship if you’ve started to accept these things as normal.
Never assume these 6 things as normal in your relationship. . .
You have made it clear to your partner that you have certain boundaries that are important to you, but your partner keeps crossing them. Their lack of respect for what is important to you is not part of a normal, healthy relationship.
Clinical psychologist Ryan Howe says that partners in a healthy relationship “ask permission, take one another’s feelings into account, show gratitude and respect differences in opinion, perspective and feelings.” Howe says that “Boundaries in romantic relationships are especially critical, because as opposed to other relationships, partners inhabit each other’s most intimate spaces, including physical, emotional and sexual.”
Physical violence, verbal, sexual or emotional abuse is never normal in a relationship. If you have said no to sex but your partner forced it on you anyway, that could constitute rape, even within a marriage. Anything that hurts you or just feels wrong should never be considered normal for a relationship.
Fearing your partner’s behavior is definitely a sign that you need to separate yourself from them, get to a safe place and possibly report their actions to the police. Contact the national domestic violence hotline at 1-800-799-7233, document the abuse and protect yourself from further harm.
Some people who have a Type A personality and will feel more comfortable having a large degree of control over things. But your partner shouldn’t be the only person making all of the decisions for you.
A relationship is a partnership and you both should have a say in your day to day activities, meals, shopping, etc. If your partner feels the need to control every decision that affects you, you should not assume that their behavior is normal.
Talk with your partner to express your frustration over not having control. Pick one or two things that are most important for you to control and ask them to let you have a say in those.
If your partner not only distrusts you, but accuses you of cheating without any grounds to do so, their jealous behavior is not normal. If you’ve not given your partner any reason to be concerned, but they accuse you of having a wandering eye or flirting too much with someone, it is most likely their insecurity that is causing them to talk to you this way, not your behavior.
Some lying is actually normal, but not where your security is concerned. In a study where people kept track of how many lies they told over the course of a week, the average was one to two lies per day. Typically people lied to prevent hurting someone’s feelings, for example telling someone they looked good when they really didn’t think that they did. Researchers believe that small lies are normal for us to keep positive social relationships.
Being lied to by your partner creates an environment of distrust. Without trust, it is difficult to feel safe, secure and loved. Whether you’ve caught your partner in a lie by finding evidence that they’ve hidden, or your gut is telling you that something’s not right, your intuition knows that you are being deceived.
You have a right to have an honest relationship. If you believe that your partner is lying about sex, money or dangerous behavior like drugs or alcohol, your safety is potentially at risk. In this case, the lie could end up hurting you by exposing you to disease, financial insecurity or potentially violent behavior.
No one deserves to be treated disrespectfully. If your partner has used racial slurs, cursing or belittling language against you, it should never be considered a normal part of a relationship. Sure it’s normal for couples to argue, but putting someone down to win an argument is not okay.
Even if your partner discounts your ideas as silly or stupid, that is not normal in a relationship. You deserve to be with someone who will support an defend you, not put you down and make you feel bad.
Being your own advocate in an unhealthy relationship can be difficult. Especially if you feel that you have no power to change things. Communicating with someone who won’t listen is not going to work.
Seek the help of a trusted friend or a licensed counselor as a good step to help yourself heal from a bad relationship. Put it behind you and know that your next relationship will be better now that you know what isn’t normal.
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