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Is the love you swear by really love, or something else? If you feel controlled, abused, or doubt yourself in your relationship, it might not be.
Love. That four-letter word we all seem so enchanted by. But how many of us really know what love entails? Is it the fairytale we read about in romance novels or watch on the silver screen? Not quite.
In real life, love is messy and far more complicated than reel life. But messy and complicated are not code for unhealthy and abusive. If your relationship contains any of the following issues, know that what you have isn’t love, and you should run as far away as you can from your partner(s).
Listen up, possessiveness isn’t cute. The jealous boyfriend routine might be a trusted trope in Bollywood cinema, but trust me, you don’t want any of that “but I only want to make sure you are safe at all times” bodyguard behaviour (read: nuisance) in your life.
Guys who want to keep track of every little detail of your daily life like what you are doing and who you are speaking to, are insecure beings who do not deserve to be with you. It can be endearing and natural at the beginning of a relationship, but if it goes on for a long period of time, treat it as a red flag and get away from this clingy stalker asap!
First of all, yes emotional cheating is still cheating. Your partner doesn’t have to be physically intimate with someone for it to count as cheating. In fact, some might argue that emotional cheating is even worse than physical cheating because it is so much harder to pin down.
Emotional infidelity is when she forms an intimate emotional bond with someone else to the extent that she invests a large amount of her time and energy into that person. Why, even watching too much porn is a form of emotional cheating, because she could have devoted that time towards bonding with you instead. Be honest and ask yourself: do you really want to spend a minute longer with a person like this?
In the middle of an argument where he has done something wrong, instead of accepting his mistake, does he turn around and tell you that you are at fault? Or when you are feeling something and you tell him about it, does he invalidate that feeling and treat it as if it isn’t real?
Please note that this isn’t him being thick-headed or unable to understand you. There’s a psychological term for what he is doing to you, and it’s called gaslighting. Psychology Today defines gaslighting as “a tactic in which a person or entity, in order to gain more power, makes a victim question their reality.”
A victim of gaslighting can be easily manipulated and often suffers from long-term emotional damage. If this is your reality, you know what you should do, don’t you?
You know how repeating a word sometimes makes it lose its meaning? Well, the same goes for the word ‘sorry’. If your girl makes a mistake over and over again, her sorry has no meaning because she is doing it repeatedly.
Again, this is not because she’s slow, it’s simply because a) she doesn’t really mean it when she apologizes, because in her heart she’s done nothing wrong or b) she accepts her mistake as a mistake but doesn’t care about the immense pain she will cause you if she repeats it. Either way, you wouldn’t want to be with a liar or a cold, insensitive person, would you? If you respect yourself—and you should, you know—take my advice and walk away.
See, we can’t change people, and we don’t choose who we love. But what we can do is make the decision to terminate a relationship that is toxic, unhealthy, and one-sided. Because at the end of the day, all you really have is yourself, and there’s no love greater than self-love.
Image source: a still from Kabir Singh
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Mahevash Shaikh is a millennial blogger, author, and poet who writes about mental health, culture,
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