Relationships come with so many benefits and blessings, but they can also come at a pretty big cost if you’re with someone who exhibits some negative behaviors.
We hammer home the notion of not falling in love with someone’s potential, but instead accepting them as they are – flaws and all.
But you also have to take into consideration your willingness to compromise and grow to accommodate your partner’s needs.
Still, there comes a point where you have to draw the line when it comes to certain undesirable behaviors.
Knowing where to allow for some wiggle room and where to draw the line is difficult.
But start with these 6 no-go behaviors which you should never tolerate in Mr. Right.
There are certain expectations that you and your partner will have to find a good middle ground.
This is generally in aspects such as how much you communicate or inform each other of your whereabouts, or how you interact with other people. Whether you’re allowed to go to hedonistic parties alone, etc.
However, there comes a point where you need to put your foot down (or rather get your feet out the door) if you start feeling like you’re no longer in charge of your own life.
Especially if your husband is demanding you keep him informed of where you are every minute of the day and refusing to let you do certain things whilst living his own life of freedom and autonomy.
Does your husband hate women?
Well, it’s not looking good for you.
Men who continuously shame and belittle women and their position in society don’t make for good life partners.
Seriously. Even if it sometimes feels like you’re the exception, you’re not.
Obviously there are occasions where men benefit from a little tutelage in feminist issues or what it’s like to be a woman.
If your husband is open and willing to learn about these issues, fantastic!
However, if he’s got his hands over his ears and is yelling about woe is him, how his job is likely to be usurped by a woman, it’s a terrible time to be a man, you’re unlikely to be able to convince him otherwise.
Gaslighting is tricky to detect if you’re unfamiliar with it.
Through emotional manipulation, one person tries (usually consciously) to gain control over another person by warping their perception of reality and undermining them.
It can come in many shapes and forms, but can involve your partner doing something abusive or hurtful then denying it took place at all.
They then proceed to shame you for accusing them and make you doubt your sense of right and wrong.
Gaslighting doesn’t just have to cover major events.
Say for example your husband starts coming home late.
Finally, you ask what’s keeping him so busy that he’s 3 hrs later than usual.
The response involves something like: “I haven’t been coming home late at all! I didn’t know you were so terrible at knowing the time. Anyway, don’t you have anything better to do than sit around and wait for me to get home? Couldn’t you be doing anything more useful?”
The resulting effect is that you do start to wonder if you’re remembering things correctly.
Maybe your mind is making things up.
You start feeling a bit guilty about hanging around and waiting for him, and worry that you’re coming across as clingy and boring.
When in fact he is sleeping with his coworker – he’s just doing a good job to spin it round on you.
And should you find some more incriminating evidence?
“Well honestly honey you’ve been so busy and haven’t had time for me. Especially after the baby, I just don’t think you’ve dedicated enough time to working out again yet so I can’t help it if I don’t really find your squishy bits attractive”.
A statement that would shock most partner’s to the core but leaves an already disheartened wife with a crippled confidence.
She wonders what she could’ve done better or how she might’ve been stricter with her post-partum workout regime to keep her hubby’s interest.
There are very few occasions where we unconsciously gaslight.
If you notice your husband dabbling in this behavior regularly, call it out and make for the hills.
Any form of violence is a no-go.
I don’t care if he lost his temper or he’s nice 99% of the time.
Physical violence and abuse is absolutely grounds to leave your marriage.
Whilst he might try and justify his behavior, and you try and justify it in your head, maintaining a healthy relationship with someone who physically hurts you is incredibly dangerous and should in no way be tolerated.
If you need additional support or information, the National Domestic Violence Hotline has multiple resources and volunteers ready to help you take the first step in breaking free.
5) Sexual coercion
Mr. Right won’t ever make you feel bad about saying no.
Mr. Wrong might start blundering on about how his needs need to be met and you haven’t had sex in so long and can’t you just this once please, he promises he’ll be quick.
The blue balls will no doubt come up in conversation.
It’s estimated that 10-14% of married women will be raped by their partner.
Whilst this figure is astronomically high, there are many legal loopholes by which men avoid any criminal penalty for marital rape.
If you fall into the latter category, I hope you get the support and confidence you need to leave your current relationship.
If you don’t strictly feel like your partner is forcing sex upon you but still tries to guilt trip you into intimacy, I would still have a long and hard think about this behavior.
This isn’t to say he’s capable of rape, but one thing can lead to another when you very adamantly say no.
Regardless, staying committed to someone who disrespects your boundaries and keeps pushing you when you say no is no healthy position to be in.
The above behaviors are made all the more easier when you don’t have friends to confide in or family to rely on.
Abusers often work to isolate their victims.
They’ll tell you fabricated stories about how your friends secretly hate you or envy you, or how your mother is trying to ruin your life.
Using emotional manipulation tactics such as the aforementioned gaslighting, they’re masters at warping your sense of reality so you begin to believe them.
If a new boyfriend raised his fist to you or tried to force you into having sex, you might disclose this to a friend who would (hopefully) show you how toxic these behaviors are.
But several years or more into marriage, having been encouraged to cut off your friends and family, you might find yourself with no one left to discuss and ask for an outside opinion.
Victims are far easier to control and abuse when they have nowhere else to turn.
Whilst you might not think your own marriage at that level, be incredibly wary of a partner who wants you all for himself.
He might dress this up nicely.
“I just love spending time with you! I adore you so much. I miss you when we’re not together and I get so lonely…couldn’t you cancel your plans with your friends to see me?”
Aww. How adorable. He needs you!
You feel all loved and wanted so start forgoing plans with friends or family catch ups.
Then a few years pass, and you realize you couldn’t text those friends for a lunch date even if you wanted to.
The friendships are dead and gone.
Nobody really enjoys trying to chase a friend who doesn’t have time for them and prioritizes her husband alone.
So be wary of your husband trying to shut down your friends and keep you all to himself.
This isn’t 50 shades of grey – it’s not cute or sexy behavior.
How do I know what’s a dealbreaker and what can be worked on?
I can’t make such a decision for you, but hopefully after reading this, you’ll have a clearer idea of what types of behavior are absolute no-gos.
That’s a good starting point.
Every relationship will run into conflict in areas such as communication, personal space, or what you both consider appropriate.
Figuring these out means openly communicating and being willing to grow and adapt to the other person’s needs, as well as sticking to your morals and putting your foot down when you really can’t budge any further.
But if your husband exhibits any of the above behaviors?
It’s very difficult to out-train misogyny or teach someone what consent means.
It’s also not your job, and he is a grown man.
Not a puppy.
So know when to go and go with grace.
Being alone can be daunting but it’s far better than being in a marriage with someone who puts your physical health and emotional wellbeing at risk.