How does a toxic in law behave? Recognize the signs.

How does a toxic in law behave? Recognize the signs.

Have you ever felt like you were trapped in a real-life horror movie with no way out? Like you were forced to interact with someone who’s always judging and criticizing everything you do? If you have, then you might have a toxic in-law.

Toxic in-laws can make your life a living nightmare if you don’t recognize the warning signs and learn how to deal with them. I know this from experience because I once had a toxic mother-in-law who made me question everything I did as a wife and mother.

Believe me, it’s not an easy situation to handle. It can be emotionally draining and take a toll on your mental health. However, by recognizing the signs and understanding their behavior, you can take steps to protect yourself and your relationship.

So, what are the signs of a toxic in-law, and how do they behave? Let’s explore this topic further and shed some light on these negative and often destructive individuals.

How does a toxic in law behave?

Dealing with toxic in-laws can be a daunting task, especially when their behavior negatively affects your relationship with your spouse. Understanding how a toxic in-law behaves can help you to navigate these challenging situations. Ross, a relationship expert, notes that toxic in-laws tend to take any situation as an excuse to react negatively, make a scene, or put you on the defensive. Here are some ways toxic in-laws may behave:

  • Blowing little things out of proportion
  • Viewing any comment as a reason to blame or shame you
  • Becoming angry over small issues
  • Being verbally abusive
  • Engaging in manipulative behavior, such as playing favorites or giving backhanded compliments
  • Refusing to respect boundaries or personal space
  • It is important to understand that toxic in-laws’ behavior is not your fault. You cannot control how they act, but you can control how you react. Setting boundaries and practicing self-care can help you to manage your interactions with them effectively. Remember that you have the right to protect yourself from toxic behavior and surround yourself with positive, supportive people.

    ???? Pro Tips:

    1. They try to control your partner’s life – Toxic in-laws will often try to influence your spouse’s decisions, even if those decisions are personal and don’t involve them.

    2. They criticize and belittle you – If your in-law constantly puts you down or makes snide comments about your appearance, behavior, or habits, it’s a sign they’re toxic.

    3. They play favorites – If your in-law shows clear favoritism towards one family member over another, especially if it’s at your expense, this is a red flag.

    4. They create drama and conflict – Toxic in-laws often thrive on creating drama and tension. They may start arguments, spread rumors, or pick fights to keep things stirred up.

    5. They ignore boundaries – If you’ve set boundaries with your in-law (such as not discussing certain topics), and they ignore them, this is a sign that they don’t respect your boundaries in general, which can be detrimental to any relationship.

    Having a toxic in-law is one of the most challenging situations a person can face. A toxic in-law can be anyone from parents to siblings-in-law, and they are always difficult to deal with. Toxic in laws have a way of making the simplest of situations stressful and tense, causing anxiety and stress in other people’s lives. Here are some of the most typical behaviors a toxic in-law exhibit.

    Overreacts to small situations

    A toxic in-law has a way of overreacting to small situations, turning them into something bigger and out of proportion. For instance, if they are hosting a family dinner and you happen to bring a dessert, they may take it as an insult that you did not like their cooking, and they may cause a scene. Everything turns into a competition, and they feel the need to be superior, even to their in-laws. If you forget to call them on their birthday, or if your child misses a soccer match, they might fly off the handle, making a minor situation much more significant than it needs to be.

    It is crucial to understand that toxic in-laws will overreact to everything. Avoid engaging in conversations that might lead to conflict.

    Constantly blames or shames you

    Another common trait of toxic in-laws is their tendency to blame or shame you for everything that happens. They never take responsibility for their actions and always find a way to twist scenarios to make them look like they are faultless. If you have a disagreement or an argument with them, they will blame you for everything, even if you know you were not in the wrong.

    Don’t take their blame or shame personally. It is just a reflection of their insecurity and inadequacy, not a true reflection of your actions.

    Exhibits verbal abuse

    A toxic in-law is always on the attack, and this often translates into verbal abuse. They will say anything to break you down and make you feel terrible. Verbal abuse can be in the form of insults, belittling remarks, cruel jokes, and even threatening comments. All of these can take a significant toll on your emotional and mental health over time.

    Set boundaries and let the toxic in-law know that their verbal abuse is not acceptable. If they refuse to change their behavior, you have the right to walk away from them.

    Puts you on the defensive

    Toxic in-laws know how to use words and emotions to put you on the defensive. Every time you interact with them, you feel like you are walking on eggshells, waiting for the next outburst. They have a knack for making you feel guilty, anxious, and uneasy, which can take a toll on your overall well-being.

    Focus on your emotional stability, and don’t let the toxic in-law control your mindset. Practice deep breathing and meditation exercises to help you stay calm and centered.

    Creates unnecessary scenes

    A toxic in-law has a way of creating unnecessary scenes, even in the most innocuous situations. They might start criticizing you at a family dinner or bringing up past disagreements that are long-dealt with. They also have a tendency to gossip and spread falsehoods to discredit you.

    Avoid giving in to the toxic in-laws’ drama and refuse to engage in any conversations that might lead to conflict.

    Refuses to communicate effectively

    Toxic in-laws will rarely communicate effectively, which makes it even harder to deal with them. They’ll either refuse to talk about their issues or push the conversation in such a way that it is difficult to follow.

    Practice effective communication techniques like active listening and using “I” statements to express your feelings and concerns. If the toxic in-law refuses to engage in a productive conversation, let them know that you will only converse when they are ready to talk respectfully.

    Puts strain on your relationship with your partner

    A toxic in-law puts a strain on your relationship with your partner, as they often interfere in your relationship by giving unsolicited advice or by trying to control your partner. They might also try to play your partner against you, creating unnecessary conflicts and making it harder for the relationship to thrive.

    Communicate with your partner and set up boundaries as a team. Make it clear to the toxic in-law that your relationship is not up for negotiation.

    In conclusion, it is crucial to remember that a toxic in-law is not a reflection of your personality or character. Everyone has the right to distance themselves from toxic people who only bring negativity into their lives. Practice healthy boundaries and effective communication, and don’t let a toxic in-law control your life. Focus on the positive relationships in your life, and don’t allow negative behavior to consume your happiness.


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