Unhealthy relationship habits often form during college, making it important for students to learn the warning signs of toxic relationships and how to escape one.
Some college students do not recognize the signs that point toward a toxic relationship and unconsciously continue to endure one. Others refuse to leave a toxic relationship because they fear being alone or unloved.
Some red flags to look for in your relationships are a lack of accountability, severe jealousy issues, bitterness and the refusal to acknowledge boundaries. If you notice any of these traits in your partner, friend or family member, you may be in a toxic relationship. Noticing the signs of toxicity is the first step of freeing yourself from the situation.
According to Kim Storm, a counselor at ULM, it is not easy to leave a toxic situation. Often, these relationships involve family members or spouses that are difficult to cut off.
To leave an unhealthy relationship, the victim must recognize the abusive patterns. Then, make an active decision to find a way out.
Kameryn Bonhomme, a junior psychology major, said she is curious about the dynamics of toxic relationships because of her intention to specialize in marriage and family therapy after graduation. She said she was glad to be able to learn about such an important issue through the workshop provided by ULM Counseling Center.
“I don’t know anyone in a toxic relationship, but I know it can be a serious issue for many students,” Bonhomme said.
According to a study conducted by Knowledge Networks, 58% of college students are unaware of how to help someone experiencing dating abuse in a toxic relationship. That is why Storm decided to organize the workshop for students to understand the seriousness of unhealthy realtionships and realize there are resources available for them to use on campus in these situations.
Karen Foster, a ULM counselor, said she urges all students to go to the Counseling Center whether it is for advice on a toxic relationship or any other service the center provides.
“Students are encouraged to utilize counseling services according to their own personal needs,” Foster said. ” The student and their assigned counselor will work together to determine a timeframe for counseling and to establish goals beneficial to the student.”