5 Steps that Lead to Someone Staying in a Toxic Relationship

This is the second part of blog, following on from why abused people stay in toxic relationships.

These are just a few techniques used to get someone to stay in/return to an abusive situation. So, keep an eye out on how your relationship may develop:

Step 1 – Standing Up for Yourself

Nearly every relationship has moments when we disagree or fall out over things, it is a perfect normal process.

And usually at the start you stand up for yourself and say what you need to say.

This does not get a positive reception, but there seems to be no real harm done and you move on.

Step Two – Shifting Blame and Excusing Behaviour

The falling outs continue, and here the abuser starts to struggle with you standing up for yourself and having a voice so they start the manipulation techniques:

Minimising or denying their behaviour – trying to convince you things didn’t happen like you recall and accusing you of things that you know didn’t happen.

Next – shifting blame. They tell you it was your fault or act all dramatically that you have really hurt them with your actions.

When you may have them arrested, if things have gone way too far, they act like a victim, how could you do this to them and again, it was your fault in the first place.

This continuous behaviour starts to have an effect on you as you begin to question your own memories – and sanity!

Step 3 – Appealing for Sympathy

They generally know if you are going to be sympathetic towards them as they have done the groundwork on how you are.

They know if they break down, threaten suicide, cry about how you are breaking up the family, say how they can’t live without you, then they will trigger something in you that makes you then re-think your original decisions.

Step 4 – Convincing You That it is You and Them Against the World

They will talk about how good you are together, recalling the good times (hmmm), how bad it would be if you were apart.

How the world is against your relationship, your family and friends will never love you or understand you as they do.

They are just out to ruin your happiness and it is only they who really cares.

Step 5: Convinces You Your Story is Wrong

Again, playing on the idea that you are a team, convincing you that you need to stick together and if you actually remember as clearly as you thought. They get you onside enough to challenge your very being.

They can actually get you to change your mind about what happened, what was right and wrong, how you feel about it.
You were angry, blaming and resolute and now you feel, love, excitement, and hope. You are not sure how you got to this point but it’s an addictive mix that you feel and decide to go with it just the same.

Even though something inside you is crying out ‘NO’ ‘I know this is wrong’!

This can happen in the most serious of toxic relationships, but it doesn’t have to be that destructive. If even the mildest of manipulation is present on a regular basis then it is an abusive relationship, as they are playing with your mind to get what they want.

These are just a few techniques used in order to get someone to stay in/come back to a toxic relationship and this is a very confusing situation to understand both from the inside and the outside.

Just be aware that if someone has you questioning yourself or feeling unhappy on a regular basis, or that it always seems to be about them, then it is just going to get worse.

You need to walk away when you notice, and more importantly not be attracted to these people in the first place.

Interpersonal Relationship Coaching (IRC) can help you. Whether you are in it now or have experienced it too often in the past and just want it to stop happening then get in touch for a confidential conversation.

I look forward to hearing from you.

Ways to get in touch: message me on my website using the contact button – email me at john@johnkennycoaching.com or give me a call or text on 07709 350019.


More Blog Posts:

What is Happiness

Is there actually an answer to this question? In this episode I will talk about the topic as a whole and hopefully shed some light on what it looks like, feels like and how it can be attained.

Read More »


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