Toxicity Isn’t Love


By Amanda Nunez, Copy Editor

Toxic Relationship – [ noun ] The relationship that doesn’t give you any happy memories or a happy moment to remember. Mainly all relationships end on a sad note; however, normal relationships kept you happy. In a toxic relationship, you were not happy even though you gave your 100%. Your toxic partner didn’t value your love. You were made to feel worthless all the time. Your respect, care, affection didn’t matter. Everything you did was wrong in their eyes.


When someone constantly puts you down, leaves you feeling like you can’t do anything right, or makes you feel worthless and bad about yourself in general, just remember you did nothing wrong and that this isn’t love. It’s emotional abuse.

Ally (a real-life Miami High junior whose name has been changed for this story) and Marvin had known each other since their elementary school days. They were in the same friend group and often interacted with each other. Throughout the years they’d gotten much closer and their relationship began to change.

When high school came around, Ally and Marvin decided to test the waters and try dating. They promised that if it didn’t work out, they’d always be friends. With that hope in mind, the two began to date and at first everything was amazing.

Marvin was the epitome of a gentleman. The “perfect” boyfriend. However, as the months passed, Ally noticed how Marvin’s attitude was changing. He no longer wanted Ally to spend any time with her friends, especially males. He even began to isolate her from her family.

The fighting was never ending, and it was usually because Ally wanted to be independent. Marvin expected her to always rely on him. He got angry if she ever went and asked one of their close friends for any sort of advice.

Because of all the isolation, Ally’s friends began to fade into the background and the only person who seemed to be there was Marvin. At least that’s what he made her think. It left her with no choice, but to stay with the person she assumed was the only one who hadn’t walked out on her. Marvin knew about how Ally’s dad had disappeared from her life and used to that his advantage.

As the time passed Marvin became more and more controlling, and the emotional abuse bestowed upon Ally was constant. One day she said she’d like to end things because this wasn’t the type of relationship she wanted. Marvin, not wanting to let her go, threatened to end his life if she left him. Ally knew Marvin struggled with depression, suicidal thoughts, and anxiety.

So, fearing that her walking out on him would be the reason he died, she stayed beside him. From the sidelines, her friends noticed all that was going on and when they’d try to tell Ally that it’s OK to leave, she’d lash out and say she loved Marvin. Their relationship got to the point where Marvin was pressuring Ally into having sex.

This went on for another 2 and a half years. It wasn’t until Marvin had broken things off that Ally finally felt free. However, that feeling didn’t last long.

Ally began experiencing nightmares and fell into depression, a depression so bad that she ended up at the hospital for several days because she was a risk to herself. The amount of damage that relationship did to her isn’t something all of us can understand until we’ve gone through it.

She began going to therapy and taking medications that will, as her doctor reminded her, “help you remember what it’s like to smile.” Slowly, Ally began to get better. Her heart was finally learning to let go of the past.

Now, she’s still on medication but she’s much happier. Therapy and the support of those around her have been her anchor throughout these rough times. Ally blocked all things Marvin out of her life and is even considering a restraining order after he messaged her a few days ago, saying he couldn’t live without her.

Moral of the story: it can be difficult to leave a long-term relationship, but it’s even more difficult to stay in a toxic relationship. You cannot allow someone to be your priority over yourself. Sometimes letting go is better than holding on to broken pieces that will only harm you.

You don’t ever have to feel guilty about removing toxic people from your life. You don’t have to make room for people who cause you pain, self-doubt, and make you feel small. And you for sure, don’t owe anyone anything. Don’t give someone a second chance just so they can make the same mistake again. That is not love.

You are not a rehab; it’s not your job to fix anyone.

Healthy love allows individuality, brings out your best qualities, lets you grow, does not control, helps your self-esteem, accepts you, doesn’t pressure, believes in equality and mostly importantly communication.