12 Signs You're In Love With An Emotionally Draining Person

It's a dead-end relationship.

man and woman arguing Zamrznuti tonovi / Shutterstock

Relationships are supposed to be fun and filled with love, but if your boyfriend is showing some red flags that have you worried, it might be time to figure out how to end the relationship.

If any of these signs arise in your relationship, the man you've fallen for is a toxic person who's emotionally abusing you.

You could be caught in a toxic relationship you never signed on for.

RELATED: The 5 Most Dangerous Types Of Toxic People 


Does it feel like your relationship is a roller coaster that you just can’t seem to step off of? Do you go from happy to sad at the drop of a hat?

Have you stayed up late picking your friends' brains about your man's behavior because he can go from hot to cold in an instant?


If you found yourself nodding to these questions, it’s time to consider the strong possibility that you're dating a toxic person. In the past, I’ve talked about the signs you’re dating a narcissist, but the garden variety jerk is something that I haven’t talked about much yet.

Clearly, there are more obvious things jerks do, like lie, cheat, and steal, but what about the more subtle signs that you’re in an actual toxic relationship? The answers lie largely in how they make you feel. These behaviors are a form of emotional abuse and you shouldn't put up with them from anyone.

(Note: Jerkiness is not gender-specific, so you can apply what follows to both men and women even though I use male pronouns here.)

RELATED: 10 Signs You're In Love With An Unapologetic Jerk


Here are 12 signs you're in love with an emotionally draining person:

1. You make excuses for his behavior

When he lets you down, you tell yourself (or worse, your friends and family) the most seemingly logical reasons why: "He's tired." "He was busy at work."

But deep down you know better. His behavior sucks, and you’re doing your best to rationalize and explain it away.

2. His attention feels like a drug

When he shows you attention, you feel happy. When he lets you down for the twenty-third time this month, his withdrawal hits you right in the gut.

If he's running hot, you can relax a little, but watch out when he goes cold. Your emotions hinge on his actions in an unhealthy way.


RELATED: 10 Tiny Little Signs Your Boyfriend Is Actually A Jerk

3. He tosses you emotional crumbs

One night he may stand you up completely, then text you the next day happily, as if nothing happened.

You might have no luck getting a response one day, but the next, he's completely on top of the communication. He has a hard time committing to making time for you.

You feel like you’re dead last on his priority list.

4. He regularly flakes on you

You’ve come to realize that all plans with him are “tentative,” since he only comes through for you some of the time.

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5. He makes you feel crazy or 'unhinged'

When the other person goes hot and cold, your emotions cycle from downright bliss to abject depression. A little bit of attention from him is enough to make you wonder if you’re going off the deep end.


The crumbs of his attention and his lame excuses for his behavior are enough to make you wonder if it’s all in your head.

6. He insists you do everything to his impossible standards

You might not even know what his standards ARE, but it feels like whatever you do is wrong. He's critical of efforts that you make even in good faith. The relationship feels difficult.

7. You feel like you have to chase him to get your needs met

Because he doesn’t really have your best interests at heart (or even vaguely on his mind), getting appreciation, encouragement or even acknowledgment is an uphill battle.

He may make vague promises, but more often than not, he doesn't keep them.


RELATED: 10 Signs He's A Genuinely Good Guy (And Not A Jerk)

8. He doesn't ever ask about you

He doesn’t really seem to want to know much about you. Your conversations are deep and wonderful (because he managed to hook you in the first place).

But over time it becomes clear that he doesn’t really seem to take much interest in you, except maybe when you’re in his immediate company.

9. When you need him, he's always busy

Need a favor? He's unreachable or has a lame excuse for why he can’t help you.

10. He's extremely selfish

It feels like you’re constantly dancing to the beat of his drum rather than the other way around. When given the choice between doing something nice for you or himself, you suspect he’d choose himself every time.


RELATED: 2 Types Of Men That Aren't Worth Even A Second Of Your Time

11. He's disrespectful and uses mean humor to insult you

Jerks make mean jokes at your expense. He might call you a mean-spirited pet name like “the ball and chain," or even a curse word.

When you get offended and speak up about his disrespect, he will try to claim that it was all a joke. Even worse, he might accuse you of being the sensitive one. He may tone it down for a while, but over time his disrespect keeps creeping back into your interactions.


12. He uses how 'damaged' he is to excuse his poor behavior

As a fun, zany hybrid of excuse-making, he blames his shabby relationship behavior on “being damaged,” “previous bad relationships,” “not being sure how to love again” and/or “having trust issues.”

If he's particularly jerky, he’ll resort to sob stories and let you feel sorry for him and make up your own excuses.

This is probably the case if you find yourself thinking, "All I have to do is show him kindness. He's been through so much."

This makes you want to heal his broken wing by being particularly forgiving.

The worst part about this is that while you’re “being understanding,” he's learning just how much he can get away with.


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Elizabeth Stone is an author, dating coach, and personal development coach who helps women restore themselves in order to improve their relationships.