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Spotting Manipulative Behavior in Relationships


It is important to be aware of yourself and others within a relationship; especially when your partner is manipulating you and it often happens under the radar. Recognizing and knowing manipulative behavior is essential in knowing to end a relationship.  Manipulative partners are toxic and can bring you down and make you feel trapped and worthless.

Some signs of manipulative behavior include:

  • Your partner telling you that you are responsible for their feelings. You aren’t.
  • Your partner blames you for how they feel and act.
  • Your partner doesn’t allow you to do the things you want or spend time with the people you like; subtly overtime excluding you from your loved ones.
  • Your partner tells you how to dress, how to wear your hair, how to act.
  • Your partner often confronts you on your behavior, that you are different from them.
  • Your partner uses intimidation against you; threatens you physically, emotionally, financially, or with suicide.
  • Your partner plays down your accomplishments, puts you down, or embarrasses you, even in front of other people.
  • Your partner shows excess jealousy; showing up unannounced to see if you are where you say you are, checking up on you, and questioning you why you were five minutes late (but often it is okay when they are an hour late).
  • Being scared of how your partner will act or react.

These are not all the signs of manipulative behavior; there are many more and they can manifest themselves in their own way unique to your partner and your relationship.  The important thing is to get help and to get out.  A partner of this sort will often make you feel like you cannot leave. The honest truth with manipulative partners is that they may be charming and intelligent on the outside, but they are shallow on the inside and know you are the bigger person for this is why they exhibit such behavior. Much of it comes from an abusive upbringing or a mental disorder: you cannot fix this. Remember this is not your fault and not beat yourself up for loving or liking this person. Don’t make excuses or rationalize their behavior. You can leave and there are places to seek shelter to.  Stay connected to your family and friends. They care about you.  Take any threats seriously and get proper help from emergency services, a help line, or a shelter.

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