It can be terrifying when you just think of the responses. You already know the tyranny of attacks coming your way, the talking about you behind your back, the guilt-tripping. Oh, yes, the guilt-tripping!
Finding the right words that will not upset people you care deeply about is often tricky. Let’s face it, you can have ALL the right words, and those people will still be upset. As a Highly Sensitive Person (HSP), it was a big deal for me to upset the family. It was SO much easier to toe the line and be quiet until I couldn’t.
Sometimes the right thing to do for yourself is to take a break from a toxic system. You don’t always have to declare that is what you are doing, but sometimes it is kinder to be precise. The trick is to explain the situation without blaming anyone. As soon as someone starts to feel blamed, guess what the response is … yep … defensiveness.
Expressing your needs in a clear and non-blaming way takes practice, but it can be learnt.
If you have been thinking about taking a break from a toxic relationship, now could be the time. The potential gifts for you are:
- More authenticity
- Clearer boundaries
- A clearer understanding of the relational dynamics
- Feeling less triggered
- Having more perspective
One of the most potent ways to unpack toxic relationships is with a therapist. It is transformational and powerful work.
Good luck on your healing journey.