5 Ways Toxic Positivity Is Bad For Your Relationship
How many profiles do you come across on Instagram that has “good vibes only” written in the bio? I mean, I get it; they intend to say they want to surround themselves with positivity. I love that too! Too much bitchiness, excessive cribbing, and pettiness turns me off. I don’t crack “jokes” on someone’s appearance because deprecating humour, I believe, affects people’s body image. In relationships too, I’d like to be trusting and think optimistically though I can’t help but have a tiny fear in the back of my mind. Having said that, when you accept positivity only, you are being in denial about your negative feelings and emotions. And studies have proven, denying and bottling of these can be damaging!
“We define toxic positivity as the excessive and ineffective overgeneralization of a happy, optimistic state across all situations. The process of toxic positivity results in the denial, minimization, and invalidation of the authentic human emotional experience,” says The Psychology Group. It further adds, “Just like anything done in excess, when positivity is used to cover up or silence the human experience, it becomes toxic. By disallowing the existence of certain feelings, we fall into a state of denial and repressed emotions. The truth is, humans are flawed. We get jealous, angry, resentful, and greedy. Sometimes life can just flat out suck. By pretending that we are “positive vibes all day,” we deny the validity of a genuine human experience.”
It’s not healthy at all and can affect your relationship rather negatively. Here’s how.
You can’t share vulnerable feelings with someone who insists on “good vibes only”
You know what, when I feel bad, pissed, angry, jealous or whatever, I would like to be able to express it. If my partner acts like I have committed a sin by feeling jealousy or considers any sort of hurt to be killing his good vibe, I don’t want it. We should be allowed to feel what we feel, and not shamed for it. If your partner refuses to accept negative emotions then you are afraid to show vulnerability, which does nothing but grow a big wall between you.
Too much positivity invalidates your negative emotions
Toxic positivity leaves no room for real emotions. Like if you’re crying and someone starts throwing random inspirational quotes at you, would you not want to tell them to shut up? Crying is good; it’s catharsis! Asking someone to be positive at all times is like suffocating them.
It can make you either delusional or disappointed
Life is not perfect and everything doesn’t always work in your favour. I understand that we have to attract the good things by being affirmative. But if your partner is acting like a jerk, turning a blind eye won’t do anyone any good. If you’re hurt by a situation, pretending it’s okay will not help. And if you keep expecting life to always be perfectly, you are setting yourself up for disappointment! Honestly, toxic positivity puts too much pressure on your relationship. Humans beings cannot be a ray of sunshine 24/7 or flawless!
You can’t fix a problem if you act like it doesn’t exist
“By avoiding difficult emotions, you lose valuable information. For example, when you are scared, your emotions are telling you, ‘Be aware of your surroundings’,” wrote Konstantin Lukin Ph.D in Psychology Today. “Emotions are not only a way for our mind to clue us into what’s happening; they also convey information to the people around us. If we are sad, it pulls for comfort. If we communicate guilt, it pulls for forgiveness,” he adds. We must use our emotions as information that we can analyse to figure out our problems. That’s the first step in fixing it. Brushing it off will only accumulate things until you blow up like a pressure cooker.
ALSO READ: What Is Toxic Positivity And Why Should You Be Wary Of The ‘Good Vibes Only’ Squad On Social Media?
You don’t really heal
“When you deny or avoid unpleasant emotions, you make them bigger. Avoiding negative emotions reinforces this idea: Because you avoid feeling them, you tell yourself that you don’t need to pay attention to them. While you are trapped in this cycle, these emotions become bigger and more significant as they remain unprocessed. But this approach is simply unsustainable,” Lukin explains. We need to process our negative emotions to heal. Otherwise, we’ll just be a couple that acts all cute but deep down there’s resentment and bottled up anger.