It doesn’t matter how old you are or how much relationship experience you have, the fact is that a lot of people have trouble determining what true love is.
Our hearts and minds have a way of playing with us and convincing us that our wrong choice is actually the real deal.
Don’t worry, this is nothing unusual. However, it doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t learn to differentiate between a toxic attachment and a genuine connection with another person.
At first sight, you might think that these two concepts have nothing in common.
Nevertheless, sadly, it’s incredibly easy to mistake one for the other.
That’s why we’re here to give you 4 crucial things that make all the difference in the world.
Selfless vs egocentric
When you have a healthy bond with someone, there is no room for selfishness.
No, this doesn’t mean that you have to love this person more than you love yourself. However, his needs also matter.
You want him to be happy and you could never have a smile on your face while he is crying.
You two are a team and you share everything.
There are compromises involved and you’re both ready to make some sacrifices for the sake of the other person’s well-being.
On the other hand, when we’re talking about a toxic attachment, you’re self-centered. The only thing that matters to both of you is your own needs.
A toxic partner couldn’t care less about the consequences of his actions.
He doesn’t give a damn whether his behavior will hurt you, as long as he is okay and happy.
He only puts himself first while you’re nowhere to be found on his priority list.
Instead of pushing you forward, this man competes against you. Instead of enjoying your achievements, they intimidate him.
Calmness vs butterflies
“The Buddhists say if you meet somebody and your heart pounds, your hands shake, your knees go weak, that’s not the one. When you meet your ‘soul mate,’ you’ll feel calm. No anxiety, no agitation.” Monica Drake
Well, this quote pretty much summarizes one of the main differences between a genuine connection and a toxic attachment.
Sadly, this is where many people are wrong.
You think that you’ve found your soulmate when you feel dizzy every time he looks at you and when you feel butterflies inside of your stomach throwing a real party.
You feel this unbearable excitement you can’t control, as much as you try.
However, this is probably a sign of a toxic attachment.
In fact, all of these feelings are usually followed by distress, doubts and the absence of tranquillity in general.
On the other hand, when you meet the love of your life, you’ll feel peace. For the first time ever, you’ll feel completely calm.
You’ll know that you’ve found your harbor and your home. You’ll know that this is where you belong.
Support vs codependence
Being involved with a toxic man brings emotional dependency.
You feel like you couldn’t live without this person by your side and as if your life would be completely pointless if you happened to lose him.
After all, this is what your partner wants. He wants you to think that he is the one who gives your existence meaning and the only purpose you have in this world.
On the contrary, when it’s the real deal, you won’t need this man by your side.
However, you’ll consciously choose him to be a part of your life and you’ll want him there.
He will be your biggest supporter and the wind beneath your wings.
The one who will inspire you to be better and the one who will push you toward independence.
This man won’t feel threatened once he sees that you’re becoming self-sufficient. Instead, he will be proud of your strength and power.
He won’t put all of his efforts into making you addicted to him, the way a toxic boyfriend will certainly try doing.
Instead, you two will grow into two healthy individuals who complete each other without being mutually codependent.
Happiness vs sadness
True love needs fighting for—there is no doubt about that. Whoever tells you that it doesn’t take a lot of effort and energy is probably lying.
The fact is that all the pieces of your puzzle can’t magically fall into place without you lifting a finger.
True love is not all roses and butterflies either. Every relationship has its ups and downs.
No matter how much you and your partner care for each other, you can’t avoid having bad days from time to time.
Nevertheless, a genuine connection with another human being should make you happy.
On the other hand, a toxic attachment makes you feel miserable most of the time.
It makes you feel uneasy, it makes you feel sad and it brings you more suffering than actual joy.
Therefore, if you still have doubts under which category your relationship falls into, just ask yourself this simple question: Am I happy or sad most of the time?
Just like that, you’ll get all the answers you need.