Is your love toxic?

A lot of the world’s problems come about because so many have lost sight of the basic humanity that binds us all together as a human family.

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We have become so disconnected that in our search for "the one true love" we forget that all life is worthy of our love. We are like a person dying of thirst, who thinks not of swimming, but only of one precious drink of water.

Our need for love lies at the very foundation of our existence. From our earliest days, we are completely dependent upon our mother’s love and it is very important for us that she express her care and affection. Children who do not receive positive affection, find it harder later life to love another. Healthy love is about trusting those on whom we depend and caring for those who depend on us. It requires a selfless love, both the ability to accept it, and to give it.

If we are out of balance, then happiness if love will be so hard to find. But just what is this balance between healthy love and toxic love?

Healthy vs. Toxic Love

Healthy Love Unhealthy or Toxic Love
Development of self first. Obsession with relationship.
Room to grow, expand; desire for other to grow. Security, comfort in sameness; intensity of need seen as proof of love (may really be fear, insecurity, loneliness)
Separate interests; other friends; maintain other meaningful relationships. Total involvement; limited social life; neglect old friends, interests.
Encouragement of each other’s expanding; secure in own worth. Preoccupation with other’s behavior; fear of other changing.
Appropriate Trust (i.e. trusting partner to behave according to fundamental nature.) Jealousy; possessiveness; fear of competition; protects “supply.”
Compromise, negotiation or taking turns at leading. Problem solving together. Power plays for control; blaming; passive or aggressive manipulation.
Embracing of each other’s individuality. Trying to change other to own image.
Relationship deals with all aspects of reality. Relationship is based on delusion and avoidance of the unpleasant.
Self-care by both partners; emotional state not dependent on other’s mood. Expectation that one partner will fix and rescue the other.
Loving detachment (healthy concern about partner, while letting go.) Fusion (being obsessed with each other’s problems and feelings.)
Sex is free choice growing out of caring & friendship. Pressure around sex due to insecurity, fear & need for immediate gratification.
Ability to enjoy being alone. Unable to endure separation; clinging.
Cycle of comfort and contentment. Cycle of pain and despair.

Beattie, Melody; Co-Dependent No More
Burney, Robert; Codependence: The Dance of Wounded Souls

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