If your partner does something that normally triggers you, I would encourage you to pause and take a deep breath before you react. Pause and notice what your emotions are. And, if you can, take a few more deep breaths and try to calm down your nervous system so that you don’t react in a destructive way.
If you can control your emotions, if you can control your reactions to your partner’s behaviors, you might be able to take the toxicity down a notch and that might go a long way towards being able to survive the holidays while in a toxic relationship.
4. Ask Family And Friends For Help.
Many of our family and friends know that we are in toxic relationships and many of them do what they can to support us throughout the year. And yet, for some reason, during the holiday season, things can be different. People get caught up in their own stuff and forget about yours.
I would encourage you to, if your friends or family are in any way contributors to the toxicity in the holiday, ask them for help.
My mother used to help me get through the holidays. How? By accepting the fact that I would not be able to spend a lot of time with her because I had to spend time with my ex’s family. She made an extra special effort to get us all together another time with the year, a time of year that wasn’t full of holiday craziness. Not only did this help her to not be disappointed at Christmas, but it also tempered the conflict between my ex and me, and that made Christmas just a little bit more bearable.
Being in a toxic relationship is hard to manage on your own. If you can ask for the support of those who love you, it might help you survive the holidays while in a toxic relationship in a way that might be different from if you were doing it on your own.
5. Know That The Holidays Will End.
So many of us dread this holiday season because of everything that happens. All the present buying, the baking, the pressure to see family, etc. will put a tremendous amount of pressure on any relationship. The pressure on a toxic relationship is even more so.
What I always tell people to keep in mind is that, on January 2, the holiday season will be over. All the pressure that they are struggling with will be over. And with the holidays being over, things can go back to normal.
I know that, if you are in a toxic relationship, normal isn’t necessarily a great thing but normal is probably better than it is during the holiday season. And, when you get to January 2, you will have actually survived another holiday! Well done!
Surviving the holidays while in a toxic relationship can be very difficult to do.
Many of the things that I have suggested are things that YOU can do to get through this crazy time. I know you don’t believe that you should have to make all the compromises to keep your relationship on even ground during the holidays but if you truly want to survive them, making compromises might be the key.
Again, you can not change someone else’s reactions and behaviors, but you can change your own. And that is the key to survival this season – your reactions.
All of this being said, January is the time of year where the high numbers of people file for divorce. Many people think, after the dreadful holiday season, that they just can’t do this one more year. As a result, they walk away. And this just might be an option for you. If you can keep your head down and get through the holiday season, you might be able to make changes on the other side.
In the meantime, knowing ways to survive the holidays while in a toxic relationship is an important way to keep yourself together and to enjoy the holidays as best you can.
You can do it!
Written By: Mitzi Bockmann Originally Appeared On: Let Your Dreams Begin