7 Relationship Warning Signs to be Aware Of

7 relationship warning signs to be aware of

There have been numerous people in my life who have acted abusively. They have prevented relationships from continuing, controlled finances, hurt people I love and myself. It has been a long time since I have lived with a person who acted like this. As a result of these past experiences and my personality, I have no filter around this type of behavior when I witness it. Today, I am left out of relationships because of my speaking out about other’s control.

I write this blog in the hopes some one will read it and either prevent themselves from being abused or leave an abusive situation. Although, it does hurt to be excluded, I have a much happier life than I could ever imagine. Life does get better when you create distance between yourself and this type of behavior.

Relationship Imperfection

No one has the perfect relationship. It is through our connections with others we heal emotional wounds and grow spiritually. There are certain warning signs to be aware of in relationships that cross the line into unhealthy interactions. Trust what your body is telling you when your mind is confused. If the relationship you are in leaves you feeling exhausted, confused, helpless, hopeless, overwhelmed, angry or anxious on a regular basis, seek out support. Whether you begin with a licensed psychotherapist or a trusted confidante, find someone who is comfortable, safe and stable to share your experiences with.

It’s all roses

Every new relationship goes through a honeymoon phase, where everything feels wonderful. Oxytocin, the cuddle hormone is flowing. You feel seen, loved and acknowledged. As in all phases, this too must end. In a healthy relationship, there is a period of adjustment in which you accept the other person’s perceived flaws. In an unhealthy relationship, the partner sees these human imperfections and attempts to change you into who he or she wants.

Some of the warning signs:

1. Isolation– Your partner wants to be the center of your world. You are told specifically or it is implied to not have relationships with certain people.

2. No boundaries or space- Your partner takes up all or a majority of your time. He or she decides where you will go and who you will hang out with. When you spend time with others without your partner, you receive numerous texts, calls and messages from them. They say it is because they love you but it is a way to keep tabs on you, as a reminder of their presence.

3. You don’t engage in your hobbies or interests- Your partner decides which activities are important, not what is important to you. He or she discourages any event, unless they are a part of it.

4. The put downs- You are criticized on everything from how you look, to how you think and do things. Pretty soon you question your own judgment and abilities. This self esteem damage leads to learned helplessness where a person feels he or she can’t leave the relationship.

5. They make you dependent upon them- This can be done through controlling your finances or you depend upon them physically to take care of you. Some people create a psychological dependency in which you need to ask their permission to do anything.

6. Threats- Be aware of emotional manipulations such as; If you don’t_________, I will __________.  When there is an increase in arguments and conflict, abuse quickly escalates. Just one past instance of violence, sexually or physically, can give you the feeling you need to walk on eggshells. Remember, one instance of physical, sexual or emotional violence is not okay, ever.

7. You are love bombed again and again. After a period of abuse there is a return to a honeymoon phase. You will hear apologies and promises, yet nothing changes. This time you want to believe it will be better and different because this is the part of the relationship you love. The problem is, this stage does not last and soon it returns to more abuse.

☎️There is hope and there is help. If you are in an abusive relationship:

The National Domestic Violence Hotline 24/7/365 at 1-800-799-7233  

National Sexual Assault Hotline   1-800-656-4673

National Teen Dating Abuse Helpline 1-866-331-9474 or 1-866-331-8453 (TTY)

National Center on Elder Abuse

Other blogs with similar topics:

How to Stop Being Controlled and Get Empowered

Why Narcissists Overreact When They Don’t Get Their Way

How to Recognize Manipulation & Protect Your Energy

How to Successfully Deal with Passive Aggressive Behavior

Lisa Hutchison LMHC is the Amazon bestselling author of Setting Ethical Limits: For Caring and Competent Professionals. Lisa is a licensed psychotherapist, who has created a unique program to help compassionate people, who get emotionally, physically and spiritually drained; rejuvenate and protect their energies. Get her FREE Gift 8 Simple Things That Release Chaos from Your Life Now! 


28 thoughts on “7 Relationship Warning Signs to be Aware Of

  1. Such an important topic, and reminders of the signs of an unhealthy relationship. Anyone who tells you there relationship is all roses, has to have had a few thorns too.
    I have been married for 44 yrs and while its been a strong healthy relationship, we too have had our moments. Especially when that ‘honeymoon’ period is over, and you begin to live with peoples habits as we adjust to each others ways.

    I saw the relationship between my parents, and I knew even before I married, I could never marry anyone with their traits. I am lucky.. Many are not so..

    So the information you have given here is valuable to anyone who is in denial if they connect with any of your warning signs..

    Wishing you well Lisa.. Lovely to connect again.. and sending Blessings your way my friend
    Take care.. and Much Love ❤

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Excellent article and advice Lisa. Many people allow abusive narcissistic relationships to take over their lives, and the sad thing is – most don’t see it coming. These people are tricksters, they hide who they are until they have a person in their web. I have a girlfriend who almost didn’t make it out alive, and this guy is still out there doing the same thing to other women. He is dangerous and there is no way to stop him. This is an important topic and seems to be a growing problem. I am blessed to be with one of the kindest, most loving man I’ve ever met for 34 years now. We tell our friends who are dating to be cautious out there and look for the signs (red flags) you listed. Thank you for being a powerful voice for supportive relationships.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you Debra. I have been fooled before. It is very difficult to notice the subtle manipulations when you are in love or even beginning a friendship. I have been blessed with a marriage of 20 years now. Once you recognize the signs, you do see them sooner. Your friends are lucky to have you looking out for them.


  3. I have actually tried to help these abusers, some actually want help but can’t seem to let aspects of themselves go so that they can heal. Yes most try to abuse you & the ones you love in return. I never allowed it but it was hard seeing others that more so allowed the abuse because they made excuses for the abuser. I did the best I could & eventually blocked the abusers from my life, I wished them well as well as all those that were abused. I stood back & watched some things change. I like to think I made a difference in the situation & in other people’s lives. Sometimes sending light & love to a person & situation helps more than trying to talk to them. I always remember that the Divine is at work willing to assist

    Liked by 1 person

    • In my counseling work with people who have acted abusively, it has shown me that some people want to change and others do not. I have found those who can be flexible with their thinking are more successful than those who have rigid thoughts. The problem is people who act controlling and abusively more likely than not have rigid thoughts. The serenity prayer has been helpful to me in letting go. Sending others love, light and prayers can be powerful. Thanks for your comment Heather.


  4. Thank you for sharing these warning signs, Lisa. I was in an abusive relationship for 10 years. It started slowly and eventually and all the signs except dependence on him. Although he tried to convince me of that one! It does start slowly and some are good actors. Guidance as you share here is what was needed for me at that time. May this message reach those who need to read it. ❤

    Liked by 1 person

  5. I honor you for sharing your story and wisdom, and for raising your voice. This is an excellent article that brings awareness to recognizing the warning signs and where to seek help. You are an inspiration, Lisa. Thank you for all that you do.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. I wish I had known this before one of my relationships… That’s for sure. Thanks for sharing and I totally agree about the isolation point. It happens slowly and in my case he had planned that part out… I feel like I was too trusting… But I have come a long way since then with overcoming trust issues. Thanks Lisa for this insightful post. xx

    Liked by 1 person

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