The beginning of a relationship can be magical. Everything seems perfect and you daydream about what your future will be like. However, sometimes a too-good-to-be-true relationship suddenly takes a turn for the worse. What was once a welcome refuge becomes a nightmare that’s hard to wake up from. When love becomes dangerous, it’s time to do everything in your power to get out. What many do not know, however, is that physical abuse isn’t the only type of relationship danger. There are many different forms of abuse that can pose a threat to your physical and mental well-being. Here are the eight most dangerous types of relationships (that don’t involve physical abuse) according to our experts.
Some of the most dangerous types of relationships are the ones that are subtly manipulative. The way that a toxic partner entraps you is not by showing how dangerous they are right away — they will be warm, affectionate, and sweet at the start of the relationship. You need to know the red flags to watch for, such as being more and more controlling about who you talk to, where you go, and even small things like what you eat. These subtle manipulations can easily transform into a dangerous relationship when one partner controls the other completely, and the manipulated person feels there is no way out.
The emotional impact of being in a manipulative relationship is severe — it may take therapy and possibly years to recover from. When you’ve been manipulated, and are possibly still in love with the manipulator, you might blame yourself for being in the situation, as if you’re actively choosing it. More often than not, the controlling, manipulative partner in this situation places the blame directly on the person they’re manipulating. They may say things like “you make me crazy,” to divert from the fact that their behavior is their own, placing the blame on you for their actions.
My advice for a person in a manipulative relationship is to start seeing a therapist. Because of your emotionally vulnerable state, it may be too difficult to leave your manipulator. Instead, work on yourself and your self-esteem. You may be met with protests, but insist on pursuing hobbies that are important to you, and do the internal work to build the strength necessary to leave the dangerous relationship.
April Davis, owner and founder of LUMA luxury matchmaking