Every family occasionally gets into a disagreement. However, if you consistently feel that your worst traits come out when you’re dealing with life as an adult, you might have a poisonous past. From minor physical abuse to severe neglect, toxic family settings can have a lasting impact on anyone. Sure, your family may have helped you achieve in your studies, or become the greatest in your field – but they may have also had some negative effects on you, especially if they placed their own objectives before your mental and emotional wellbeing.
The thing we all don’t realize is that we tend to carry certain traits from the past. These traits alter from time to time and most often, we don’t recognize where they come from. Since we’re talking about toxic environments, here are a few toxic behaviours that you might have picked up as a child and now practise as an adult.
Being agreeable at all costs
While it’s acceptable to be nice and make an effort to get along with others, it’s simple for those who were raised in toxic environments to go too far, to the point where it becomes harmful. Because confrontation was frequent and dramatic growing up in a toxic home, you tend to be people-pleasing. People with such backgrounds frequently neglect their needs and feelings in favour of conflict avoidance. Even though your opinion or choice is the exact opposite of someone else’s, you end up agreeing with everything they say.
Always jump to conclusions
Jumping to conclusions or thinking the worst about others is a bad habit that might have something to do with your upbringing. How did this arise? Emotional manipulation. Growing up, you experience a lot of manipulation with your family or close friends, and you might have developed an expectation of it in others. Healthy relationships can be challenging because of this.
Need constant validation and lack self trust
If you experienced toxic neglect as a child due to insufficient support or attention, you may crave greater approval as an adult. Since your family and relatives were unable to provide you that assurance, you now look for attention in other ways as a result. You end up coming across as someone who is constantly looking for attention. Just like validating yourself, another sign of growing up in a toxic environment is a lack of self trust. If you don’t feel like you are good enough as a person, you can let your insecurities rule, which could make you doubt your ability to make wise choices.
Hard to maintain a healthy relationship
Ever felt like you’ve been picking fights with your friends or partner over petty issues? That might be a sign of an unhealthy upbringing. This can be a problem, because it is through our parents and family members that we learn how to connect and communicate. You can find it challenging to create or maintain friends if you have a tendency to draw conclusions too quickly, or a strong desire for approval. Often, most relationships end because of these toxic traits.
Relax in unhealthy ways
Two things those who grew up in toxic environments crave for are affection and attention. And when you can’t get those two, you turn to unhealthy habits to comfort yourself. If you were raised in a toxic atmosphere, you might oversleep, spend excessive amounts of time on social media, be antisocial, or turn to drink. You may not realize it at first, but you eventually develop these bad habits in an effort to suppress your emotions.
People who had parents whom they struggled to hold in high esteem, or who lived in high-stress environments, may have had thoughts of not being good enough. They tend to engage in negative self-talk and have an ongoing toxic internal dialogue. Perhaps your mother’s negative remarks, or the snippy comments of a relative still ring in your ears after all these years. As a result, you constantly condemn yourself for not being good enough.
Lack of social interaction and trust
One’s personality can be affected when they are reared in a stressful environment, with manipulation and other forms of mental abuse. In certain cases, parents may not have been able to give their children the assistance they required, and in other cases, a person may reside in a family where they always feel the need to be on watch. Later, it will be challenging to overcome the sense that you must always be in this state. Eventually, you can start to have trouble opening up to and trusting other individuals.
Take failure extremely seriously
Failures are bound to happen. But instead of viewing them as stepping stones, people who grew up in toxic environments make a big deal out of them. They believe that they are never good enough or even worthwhile. Their parents or other family members may have had unrealistic expectations for them and blamed them when they weren’t reached. In essence, they lack self-care and have a low sense of self-worth. Because of this, even the smallest error or failure might frighten them and cause them to make snap decisions.
More on relationships? Read these: