Their damage lies in their subtlety and the way they can have you questioning your 'over-reactiveness', your 'oversensitivity', your 'tendency to misinterpret'. There are plenty of things toxic people do in an attempt to manipulate the world to their advantage. Here are ten of the classics.
Single Londoners often bemoan the fact that people are not in London for the long haul. They say that people come here and plan to stay for just a few years to focus on work and their careers before going back to their hometowns or countries, so "it's never the right time" is a regular dating issue.
A Judge has recently ruled in the case of Tracey Wright that she should go out and get herself a job rather than rely on her ex-husband to provide maintenance for her to live on. This has caused huge ripples as there is now expected to be a huge rush to the courts to renegotiate divorce settlements.
The first, inalterable rule of dating, or as I sometimes like to call it, desperatelytryingtogetmarriedbecauseallyourfriendsare, is this: You might die alone. Read those words, and remember them. Heed them. Learn to love them.
We were told that someone requiring treatment for Aids had died because they could no longer afford to pay their medical bills. Wives of some of the workers started to turn up at our house (R now worked from home as the company offices had no electricity) with babies and small children, asking for help we couldn't give.
They are an extension of ourselves that we give our love to. They are our friends, our children; their companionship provides us with a greater sense of vitality and represents our character. We adopt them because they need our care, and because we recognize their good intentions.
Anyone getting married knows that there is a certain amount of planning you just can't sidestep. No matter how big, or small, your wedding is going to be, you cannot avoid involving people, offending people or worrying about people.
Emotional abuse can cause more harm than physical beatings, and the wounds do not always heal, at least not completely. They can fester and adversely affect every aspect of life. It is important to recognize the signs of a toxic relationship before suffering extensive mental and emotional damage.
When a couple experiences erectile dysfunction from time to time it's embarrassing and frustrating. When it goes on for longer and becomes a chronic problem it's extremely stressful and can have a negative impact on the relationship.
The first date is the tester, the initial round where the deranged and emotionally infirm are weeded out. Hence, all first dates occur on a week night - they are rarely given prominent billing, and rightly so.
How many of us choose something - a car, house, job, career, partner, or life - and then complain about it? What a tremendous amount of wasted energy!
Personally I found the unwillingness to be open about mental illness was one of the greatest barriers to my recovery. I held a belief that people simply wouldn't understand or that there was something wrong with me for feeling how I did that lead me to keeping so much bottled up.
A long time ago, there were two ladies who became friends, whilst waiting for appointments at their local doctors surgery. Both were expecting babies, and they just hit it off....You know when two people meet and suddenly you become friends for life, this is what happened to them.
Wit and humour are invariably the key to a good night out, so remember to ask your date if she knows any jokes. If none are forthcoming, simply laugh as loudly as you can throughout the evening.
If you're missing the pieces from your own "life puzzle", you can never expect to take those pieces from someone else's. Whose puzzle looks very, very different from your own. If you do, You'll always be searching for that "missing piece". Tirelessly searching. And often fruitlessly.
I hope that your heart-shaped selection box doesn't give you the runs. I hope that this weekend you and your loved one collaborate on a magnum opus of love poetry that would put literary greats like John Keats and Mick Hucknall to shame. But, really, don't you think it's time we stopped enabling Valentine's Day?