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Warning Signs of an Unhealthy Relationship

author image Debby Mayne
Debby Mayne started writing professionally in 1992. Her work has appeared in regional parenting magazines and she has been managing editor of the magazine, "Coping with Cancer." She was also fashion product information writer for HSN. During college, Mayne worked as an instructor at a fitness center. She holds a Bachelor of Science in health, PE and recreation from the University of Southern Mississippi.
Warning Signs of an Unhealthy Relationship
A young couple arguing in a kitchen. Photo Credit View Stock/View Stock/Getty Images


Unhealthy relationships can occur in friendship, while dating and in marriage. Any association that is harmful to your emotional, mental or physical well-being can leave scars. Help Guide advises that no one should be fearful of a partner. If you see any of the warning signs of an unhealthy relationship, seek help.


The Heart 2 Heart support network states that if the person you are with repeatedly hurls insults, he is emotionally abusing you. This may include comments that make you feel less than adequate, belittling you for any reason or getting angry over insignificant things. Other types of insults may include putting down your friends, the way you dress or acting as though you aren't worthy of his love or friendship. Swearing or yelling at you is another sign of an unhealthy relationship.

Extreme Jealousy

Jealousy and love have nothing to do with each other. When people are in love, they should trust each other. Jealous partners may question everyone you talk to, accuse you of flirting with someone or try to limit your time with friends. Once a jealous person gains control, this can interfere with every aspect of your life, including her telling you whom to talk to, where you can work or when you can go anywhere. She even may check the mileage on your car.

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In an unhealthy relationship, your partner may put pressure on you for any number of things. According to a Santa Clara University report on warning signs in relationships, he may try to intimidate you to have sex when you're not ready. He may pressure you to use alcohol or drugs. If you don't want to do something he wants to do, he may try to pressure you into it by belittling you, intimidating you or giving you an ultimatum.

Wrongful Blame

If your partner lays all responsibility on you for whatever goes wrong, you are probably in an unhealthy relationship. Whether he physically hurts you or threatens to and then turns around and says you asked for it, he is putting the blame on you for his problems. Accusing you of being the cause of being overlooked for a promotion, making mistakes or doing anything that doesn't get desired results is unhealthy.

Sudden Mood Changes

Some abusive partners have sudden mood changes--going from being nice and agreeable one minute to having an explosive outburst of anger the next. This type of moodiness is a strong warning sign of an unhealthy relationship with someone who may be emotionally unstable.

Emotional Blackmail

Emotional blackmail is a sign that you are in an unhealthy relationship. This may include threats of suicide or self-inflicted physical harm. Other types of emotional blackmail are threats to take your children or harm them, threats to harm you or threats to take or destroy something that belongs to you.

Physical Harm

No one has the right to strike, pinch, bite or inflict any other type of physical harm on another person. If your partner even threatens to hurt you, your relationship is unsafe, and you need to seek help.

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