Every single person is broken in some way. That simple fact by itself doesn’t make a person toxic at all. What does make a person toxic is when a person is broken & refuses to change.
This type of person is dangerous to the mental health of other people. Whether consciously or unconsciously, he or she often will try to bring other people down to their level. Doing so makes this person feel better about themselves. If they see other people behaving in ways that they behave, it normalizes their behavior which gives them a false sense of assurance that they are just fine. Seeing others behave even worse than them also gives them a false sense of assurance. This time, it’s that they aren’t so bad by comparison.
These people also try to force other people into their box as a way to prove that a situation isn’t the dysfunctional one it truly is. This often happens in dysfunctional families. One person stands up & says, “This isn’t right!” & the toxic broken people will react. They try to convince the one who stood up that it is right, they should continue the status quo & stop making waves. The person who said this is wrong clearly is the real problem, not the dysfunction, according to these people. This is a very common scenario in narcissistic families in particular. It happened in mine when my father was dying. I had relatives treat me terribly because I refused to say good bye to him at the hospital. When I prayed about this, God clearly told me not to go, & also why they treated me this way. It wasn’t that they loved my father & wanted to do something that would please him. It was to protect their delusions that he was a great guy & I was the one with the problem. If they could continue their delusions, there would be no need to face the fact there were any problems in our family. They preferred to remain in their denial & treat me terribly than face the truth & realize how broken not only they but other relatives were.
Sadly, there are a LOT of people like this! They prefer their broken state over facing truth & healing. In a way, it’s understandable. The truth hurts sometimes. It’s incredibly painful to admit that someone you loved didn’t love you & in fact enjoyed causing you great pain. That being said though, remaining broken & not trying to heal clearly can make someone incredibly toxic.
When you come across someone like this, remember, you can’t force them to face their brokenness. They may do so but only in their time & when they realize they want better for themselves. There is nothing you can do to change their mind about that. The best thing you can do for them is to pray. One of my most frequently prayed prayers is asking Got to help someone to see the truth & to enable them to handle that truth.
It’s also important to remember to have no expectations of someone like this suddenly wanting to face the truth. Hopefully they will one day, & sooner rather than later. But, putting that expectation on them won’t help. In fact, it may make them more determined to remain as they are. You also will be disappointed over & over when they don’t change.
Lastly, never forget that allowing someone like this to mistreat or even abuse you isn’t going to help them or you. It isn’t a good, helpful or even Godly thing to do for either you or them. Nothing good comes of that. Your best bet is to walk away if at all possible. If that is impossible for whatever reason, you will need to have firm boundaries in place to protect yourself.
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