All About Toxic Girlfriends: Ideas To Make Things Better

Being honest and staying calm is important while dealing with a toxic partner.

Reviewed by Vincenzo Sinisi, Clinical Psychologist Vincenzo Sinisi Vincenzo SinisiClinical Psychologist facebook_icontwitter_iconlinkedin_iconyoutube_iconinsta_icon
Written by , MA (English Literature), Certified Relationship Coach Shivani Chandel MA (English Literature), Certified Relationship Coach Experience: 4 years
Edited by , MA (English Literature) Madhumati Chowdhury MA (English Literature) Experience: 7 years
Fact-checked by , Integrated MA, Certified Relationship Coach Sneha Tete Integrated MA, Certified Relationship Coach linkedin_icon Experience: 4 years
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A toxic girlfriend can be challenging to deal with; we get it. Relationships with such individuals may feel claustrophobici  A condition which induces a terrible fear of enclosed spaces or being confined to a cramped space. . But you have come to the right page to seek help. So, before we tell you how to navigate this uncomfortable situation, let us get you acquainted with all the aspects of a toxic personality. Trust us when we say that giving up should be your last option in a relationship. There is little that good communication, patience, and empathy cannot fix. Instead, you should probably take a step back and reflect on the connection you share with your girlfriend. Doing that will help you to understand her state of mind better. Scroll down for more information.

What Defines This Girlfriend?

Knowingly or unknowingly, your girlfriend could have a negative aura about her. As you have to deal with this personality on a regular basis, chances are that her presence itself has become a toxic element in your life. From scouring for the silliest of reasons to pick an utterly unnecessary fight to display narcissistic characteristics, this girlfriend does it all.

Shashwat Agarwal, a blogger, recalls his personal experience of being in an unhappy relationship because of his toxic girlfriend. He shares that the bond started on a beautiful note but the extreme lack of emotional maturity led to its ugly head. They started fighting over trivial matters. She used to physically harm him a lot of times too. He realized that he was enduring a toxic relationship and adds, “The emotional maturity gulf was way too deep to cross. That is where our relationship fell into and died (i).”

So, now that we have a basic understanding, we can proceed and describe the traits to look out for when asking, “Is my girlfriend toxic?”. Let’s find them out and see if you can recognize them:

13 Signs Of A Toxic Girlfriend And Its Harmful Impacts On A Relationship

  • All Take And No Give: This girlfriend will often make you feel like the relationship is a one-way street. Be it gifts, time, or attention from you, she is happy taking it all but is absent when she has to reciprocate and give. She will constantly want your time and attention, but when it comes to offering the same to you, she refuses.
  • Dishonesty And Lack Of Transparency: A girlfriend who is toxic for the relationship is barely ever honest with you. Deceiving, lying, and betraying are the activities she excels at. She will make sure she knows everything about you but never disclose anything about herself.
  • Defense Mode – Her Prized Possession: This girlfriend never accepts her mistake. She will always keep a well-knit excuse story ready so that, when caught lying to you, she can use it to cover her mistakes.
A toxic girlfriend never accepts her mistake
Image: Shutterstock
  • Highly Manipulative: Oh, a girlfriend filled with toxicity masters the art of manipulating and gaslighting people. So, it should come as no surprise that she can be an enabler too and will employ her manipulation skills on you as well. For instance, if at some point she commits a mistake or is caught betraying, instead of apologizing, she will skillfully send you on a guilt trip for even questioning her. That’s too bad. Yep.
  • Keeps You On The Leash: This girlfriend of yours finds immense pleasure in controlling every bit of your life. They might use an extra sweet voice or a harsh tone to keep track of your whereabouts all the time as they are very possessive, jealous, and insecure. There will be no healthy space between you as you’ll find yourself juggling between finding a cab at midnight immediately and ringing her to explain why you’re late, just to get misunderstood still. You will completely forget what life outside a relationship even looked like, for you will have none.
  • Lack Of Compassion: She is not compassionate towards anyone at all. Hence, if you are distressed and are expecting some sort of sympathy from her, be ready to get none. She’ll pay no heed to your suffering no matter how much you express it.
  • The Blame Game: She’ll make sure to twist and turn critical situations and pin the blame on you if anything goes wrong. In fact, she will make small mistakes look like severe mistakes and make you feel sorry for almost no reason at all. She just loves the blame game like crazy.
  • Bring Up Resolved Issues To Win Arguments: A girlfriend of this kind tends to remind you of your mistakes repeatedly. The slip-ups that have been dealt with earlier will see their place in every upcoming argument. She does this mostly when she’s on the losing side of a fight. This is more like her weapon against you.
  • Fake Apologies If At All Offered: Usually, this girlfriend will never apologize for her mistakes. However, in case she does, she will never mean it. She’ll only make you feel as though she’s sorry so she can escape from the fight and tell the world that she’s sorry.
Toxic girlfriend apologizing to partner without meaning it
Image: Shutterstock
  • Victim-card: Oh, my, the victim card. This one actually tops the list, but anyway, since we have already begun, let’s talk about it now. See, this girlfriend is filled with all the poisonous traits. And to conceal them all, she is demanding and always plays the victim card. So that nobody questions her wrong-doings, she somehow uses her tactics to pose as though she’s the only one hurting her. She makes you feel terribly sorry, commits endless mistakes again, and raises the victim card again too, and this cycle just goes on and on and on!
  • Emotional Blackmail: This can come in the form of manipulation, like threatening to withdraw affection, harm themselves, or invalidating your feelings and concerns, dismissing or belittling you, and setting impossible expectations on you for the sake of relationship longevity.
  • Clinginess: This shows up as an excessive need for constant contact, where she does not give you personal space or draw boundaries around her own. She often gets jealousy and possessive, or relies on you to fulfill all her needs for her emotional well-being.
  • Accusations: Constructive communication is essential for a healthy relationship, but if she is constantly yelling, blaming and fault-finding and rarely takes responsibility for her own actions, this could be toxic.
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A toxic girlfriend may also struggle to accept disappointments regarding things that are out of your control, like plans getting canceled or a poor-quality dinner. She may throw a tantrum when things do not go according to her plan.

How To Deal With A Toxic Girlfriend

Man medidating to deal with toxic girlfriend
Image: Shutterstock

When your relationship begins to cause you excruciating pain because of your girlfriend, who is toxic, you need to understand it is not healthy for you at all. And in this case, you have to find ways to eliminate all the negativity that is impacting the relationship. So, let us have a glance at these ways:

  • Acceptance: Well, if you look around, you will see many people tied to a toxic partner. But most of them, despite knowing their situation, find it extremely difficult to accept that they are really in a complicated relationship. And this is when things go astray. Once you acknowledge that the relationship has turned toxic for you, then you can gather all your broken pieces and work towards improving it and saving yourself from further damage. So, when you know that you’re in this uncomfortable relationship, say to yourself that you are. Of course, the toxicity looming in the air will also cloud your vision and judgment, making it further cumbersome to identify the red flag. But sit down for a while and analyze the relationship. You’ll know when you know. For. Sure. And you shouldn’t delay accepting after this.
  • Tell Them The Truth Instantly: Look, you can’t sit there quietly and suffer. A relationship is born out of love and is supposed to fill your life with happiness. Minor setbacks are inevitable, but you don’t remain in a relationship where you don’t get any chance to taste joy at all. You deserve to be happy; hence, before it’s too late, let them know how they make you feel. Clearly express when they hurt you. Chances are, sometimes they might not be aware that their behavior towards you is causing you pain. So, maintain transparency in the relationship and make them understand that they are hurting you badly.
  • Meditate To Calm Yourself: Your girlfriend’s behavior will undoubtedly frustrate you. To this end, you will lose your calm. And in the race of trying to find your rightful respect back, you might, too, end up saying things that you didn’t mean, which will take the relationship to a dead end. So, meditate. Or focus on your hobbies. Maybe, go out on vacation and clear your head. This helps when you wonder how to talk to your girlfriend about problems. Once you feel better, talk things out with her at the right time and place.
  • Seek Professional Help: You can knock on the door of those couples’ counseling sessions and learn how to salvage your situation. The relationship experts will provide you with a streamlined procedure to find the middle ground in all of your feuds. In integrated sessions for situations like these, you will obtain essential insights into understanding the flaws and correcting them better.
Man seeking professional help with girlfriend by attending couples' counseling to deal with toxic girlfriend
Image: Shutterstock

How To Stop Being A Toxic Girlfriend

Woman apologizing to boyfriend to stop being a toxic girlfriend
Image: Shutterstock

If you are one among toxic girlfriends or even a toxic ex-girlfriend yourself and landed in this article to learn how to stop being one, then kudos to you, girl! It takes real guts to accept one’s flaws and correct them when necessary. And since you are one of those who’s shed away all that harmful pride, then we are always here to render you the service and assist you in improving yourself. For the same, we suggest you read the below-mentioned points and follow them religiously to achieve your goal:

  • Identify Your Mistakes: It might seem apologizing should be the first step, but doing that without prior knowledge of your deeds will not help. You must know what wrong you’ve done so that you can avoid them going ahead. For this, you need to sit down, relax and then begin identifying all the things you did to hurt your sweet bae. Once you’ve done it, you can plan ahead.
  • Apologize: No matter how old that fault of yours was, if you didn’t apologize before, then it’s still not too late to do it now. This will make your bae realize that you really mean and are willing to eliminate all the negative aspects of the relationship and move ahead with a positive attitude. So apologize whenever you make a mistake going forward too.
  • Offer Space: Your sweetheart is in dire need of some space. Give them that. Allow them to do their own thing. This will allow both of you to recollect all the good times you spent before, which will eventually bring you two love birds closer together!
  • Attain Calmness: You’re in a healing phase of your life. The toxicity has done immense damage to you too. So what’s better than meditation to attain that much-needed calm? So, practice it, find your center. You will find the light of the day and thrive further both in the relationship and in your personal life as well.
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You can also create a support network with your close friends or family. They may help prevent you from going in isolation and lashing out on your partner. They can offer you a safe space to vent out your frustrations in a healthy manner and stop you from acting impulsively.

Infographic: 5 Signs Of A Toxic Girlfriend

It is very easy to lose yourself in a relationship when you are in love. It is also easy to ignore certain red flags. A toxic girlfriend will fight about the smallest things and blame you for everything. How do you identify these signs? We have got covered. Check out this infographic for the top signs of a toxic girlfriend you should look out for.

5 signs of a toxic girlfriend (infographic)

Illustration: StyleCraze Design Team

It is unhealthy to bear the pain that a toxic girlfriend can inflict on you. But you never know why she behaves the way that she does. With the help of a healthy conversation, your possibilities of salvaging your relationship and nourishing it to make it a success are more than you can ever imagine. So, sit down, understand her, let her know how her actions hurt you, and see if you can eliminate all the toxicity in the relationship. And when you feel the need, seek professional help. But if everything else fails, be strong to make an intelligent decision without hurting yourself or your partner.

Frequently Asked Questions

Can true love be toxic?

No. True love is patient, kind, empathetic, and committed. When you truly love someone, you would never want them to go through emotional abuse or harm them by being aggressive or violent, be it through toxic words and actions.

Can you fix a toxic relationship?

A toxic relationship can be fixed if partners in the relationship are willing to change their abusive ways, seek therapy or counseling, and work towards improving a codependent relationship.

Can toxic people change?

Yes, toxic people can change provided they acknowledge their faults, reflect on them, and work towards becoming a better version of themselves.

Why is it hard to leave a toxic relationship?

It is hard to leave a toxic relationship because usually attraction and love come first in the relationship, which get magnified, making one blind to all red flags. Then the attachment grows too deep before the toxicity becomes obvious. Victims in toxic relationships themselves have a hard time accepting the toxic ways of their partners because they do not want to let their love and care go to waste. They want to believe that these toxic patterns were only momentary lapses in judgment and the person they had loved is still somewhere in the toxic shell of a human.

What causes a person to be toxic?

Most toxic people have a traumatic history that manifests itself in toxic behavior. They feel like victims who suffered unfairly in their life and dealing out the same pain to others appears like the only fair way to move forward.

Is a toxic relationship worth saving?

If the toxic partner has acknowledged their faults and shown their will to change things for the better through sincere actions, then the relationship could be worth saving.

How do you cut off a toxic person you love?

To cut off a toxic person, you need to cut everything that connects you to them. Get rid of everything that reminds you of them, and avoid any kind of physical or virtual contact. Make sure to also distance yourself from mutual contacts who might want to stir up trouble despite knowing the situation. Prioritize yourself, engage in self-improvement and self-care activities, and spend time with people who love you. Go out and make new friends who give you positive vibes and slowly, the toxic phase from your past won’t hurt you so much.

Key Takeaways

  • Lack of transparency, respect, or personal time and space in your relationship may hint at some toxic traits of your girlfriend.
  • She may or may not be aware of these negative personal traits, so it needs to be put into perspective early on to help make things better.
  • Good communication, patience, and empathy are key when dealing with a toxic girlfriend.


If you think that you are in a toxic relationship but are not sure then watch this video that explains the signs of a toxic girlfriend.

Personal Experience: Source

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Vincenzo Sinisi

Vincenzo SinisiClinical Psychologist

Vincenzo Sinisi is a psychoanalyst, group analyst, clinical psychologist, and the founding director of TherapyRoute, an international mental health service directory and resource platform. He has 14 years of experience and is an active member of the South African psychotherapeutic community and has held several executive positions, including Chairperson of the Cape Town Society for Psychoanalytic Psychotherapy, Secretary of the...read full bio

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