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Here’s Why It Is Completely Fine To Cut Out Family Members From Your Life

If you ask me, there is nothing more painful and devastating than to break the connection and distance yourself from certain family members.

Family ties are one of the strongest types of bonds that we have in life. That’s why when we must cut them, it can scar us deeply. After all, your family is supposed to be always there for you, they are the people that you never expected to hurt you.

However, sometimes you must face the cold truth that some people, even if they are members of your family, are simply toxic to you and you’ll be better off without them.

You must put yourself first. You should never put in jeopardy your physical, mental, and emotional well-being just because you feel like you have to tolerate them because they are your family and you were taught that family bonds are eternal.

So, how can you know that you are dealing with a toxic family member? Watch out for these 5 signs of toxic people:

1. THEY FEED OFF DRAMA

You decide to turn to a family member for advice or share with them your deepest fears and expose your vulnerabilities because you trust them entirely. Then you find out that they betrayed you because now every member of your family knows your secrets. It is the ultimate betrayal, especially since it comes from a family member, a person with whom you share the same blood.

2. THEY JUDGE YOU

Criticism can be good and healthy only when it is constructive. However, constant, degrading, and unjustified criticism can really affect a person’s self-confidence. Family members that are judgmental and nothing you do seems to be good enough for them are toxic and you should remove yourself from their presence.

3. THEY ARE ONLY THERE FOR YOU WHEN THEY NEED SOMETHING FROM YOU

A toxic family member will only be there for you when you have something they want. Usually, they will go to you for advice or an emotional comfort. But as soon as they get what they need, they will distance from you again. And when you need their support and love, they will never be there. They will decline your needs and use everything they know about you to manipulate you.

4. THEY QUICKLY JUMP BETWEEN POSITIVE AND NEGATIVE REINFORCEMENT

One moment they will yell at you and insult you, and the next they will praise you and support you only to lure you back into their trap. They can’t stand when you ignore them, so they will do everything in their power to regain the lost control on you. Of course, these pseudo-approvals are very short-lived as they will inevitably go back to their manipulative behavior.

5. THEY GASLIGHT YOU

If your family member ceaselessly claims that they never said or did something when you and everyone else knows that that’s not true – you are being gaslighted. Gaslighting is a manipulation technique with a purpose of sowing seeds of doubts in the victim in a hope to make them feel powerless and question their own perception, memory, or even their sanity.

If you recognized a family member in the description above, then they are dangerous for your mental health. Toxic relationships, even when they come from friends or family members, can really affect your sanity and your overall well-being.

There are many things that you can do to make the relationship with a toxic family member more tolerable. Still, the best solution is to cut them out entirely from your life.

This is not easy, especially when the toxic member is your parent. However, when the situation escalates to a point when it is almost impossible for you to live happily and freely – eliminating the source of your unhappiness is essential.

Also, you should know that when you decide to remove a toxic family member from your life, there will be feelings of loss, guilt, pain, uncertainty, and doubts whether you made the right decision.

However, you must determine how much you are willing to sacrifice yourself to protect your emotions. Sometimes, you must experience pain to help yourself. That pain is not malicious, but it is a normal part of the process of letting someone go.

And even when you do eliminate the toxic family member from your life, understand that you may need some time to recover from the abuse. This is also okay, and it is a part of the healing process.

Finally, love and support don’t always come from family members. You can get all the love and support you need from your friends and/or your significant other. By surrounding yourself with supportive people your life will change for the better.

TAKE CARE! You owe it to yourself.

Mary Wright

Mary Wright

Mary Wright is a professional writer with more than 10 years of incessant practice. Her topics of interest gravitate around the fields of the human mind and the interpersonal relationships of people.
Mary Wright

11 COMMENTS

  1. I’m at 50 -50 on this. You may cut them off temporarily but at the end they are still family. In my opinion it depends on the culture you were brought up. I’m down with loosening yourself from toxic family members for a while. But we should remember we still go back to our roots. At the end we should learn to listen and forgive. Cause one day we will all be gone in this earth. We dont want to pass life with a burden in our hearts or regrets.

  2. I cut them out and it was the best thing that ever happened even though it was my parents and they both have passed away without trying to reconnect. Their fault, not mine. I made peace with it years ago for my mental health. Good article.

  3. I agree with Zendley. Keep your distance, be aware of what they are doing, and try to change how you REACT to their actions.

  4. In reaction to Anonymous. It all depends on how damaged you are by them. It may not be possible for your own wellbeing to reconnect.

  5. Too many young “entitleds” are using this Philosophy to emotionally blackmail loved ones into getting what they want. When parents say “No ” they suddenly become toxic! I know that there are occasions when this action is necessary but unfortunately this practice is used too often to justify punishing loved ones for not giving into unsafe or irrational demands.

  6. I decided to cut ties with a toxic brother, and with him went my own mother, several aunts, uncles and cousins, and a couple of nieces. As hard as it is, I realized that those who went along with the narcissists are being held hostage by the situation and the toxicity of my mother and brother…and as much as I grieve the others, I don’t regret going no contact with the first two. Such behavior is emotional abuse, plain and simple, which is why I disagree with “but it’s your mom/it’s your family” logic — Some of us will never go back, and some of us are healthier for that decision. I listen and forgive people who are sorry, not to unapologetic narcissistic abusers who only talk to hear their own voice tell me why I deserve what I’m getting. Ultimately I want to model good behavior to my daughter that NO ONE gets to emotionally or physically abuse you, ESPECIALLY family, and model good, two-way respectful behavior for how families should be.

  7. They are not family when they lie about your moms health leave your mother to die, on the floor alone and not tell anyone for 5 days because they were digging all the money from the freezer after they made a home made will taking everyone but them out. Estate worth 1,5million plus.

  8. We are 8 with parents.
    As precisely said, it is true and high lights mostly after grown up and become independent and also separate family.
    Some are selfish, with ego, form group, some like to be with the family for their benefit, etc, etc.
    But the person who sincerely love the family is the most effected.
    No body has come to live permanently in this world. Some become prestigious, Top professionals, wealthy, Politicians, etc, etc. but at the end of the life contract, we all leave without any of above.
    Some families are united only as long as the parents are alive.
    People have become like machines, has no feelings. Not everyone, but mostly. Nobody knows where humanity is heading.

  9. There are degrees in all things and people are too quick to judge, point fingers and argue. No problem with cutting off abusers, but all relationships still require give and take, patience and work. Nothing and no one is perfect. Too many articles are being written like this pointing fingers and calling mothers/ families toxic. Families are being destroyed and lives ruined. All should be taking ownership of issues and using communication to improve relationships not throwing away loving, caring people. A wise person will put effort in first and learn to place boundaries and express themselves and needs in an honest way. There are two sides to every story – there are good people suffering and broken – having been devoted and loving to their children.

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