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Relationships can be tricky at the best of times! We are on the search for that special man who makes your heart skip a beat, a man who can whisk you off your feet and make you feel as though there is no one else in the world that he would rather spend his life with.

Each time that we meet someone new, go on a first date or read through a dating profile we are trying our best to sort through the dating pool, selecting those special, genuine gentleman and discarding those that will bring nothing more than drama and heartbreak into our lives.

The problem is that it isn’t always that easy. Some of the most toxic people you encounter in your life will originally come across as sweet and caring, sporting a carefully manufactured mask to fool others into believing that they are the ‘real deal’.

How much truth is there to the old saying ‘Love is Blind’? It is not uncommon to see your new romantic interest through rose colored glasses, explaining away and rationalizing bad behavior as being ‘normal’. The truth is, you deserve better! You deserve to be with someone who treats you with care and respect, putting the effort into a healthy and loving relationship. Demand to be treated as you deserve, and if he refuses to oblige don’t stick around and settle. Walk away with your head held high, knowing that there is someone better out there!

Here are 9 different toxic behaviors that are often mistaken as being nothing more than ‘normal’ boyfriend behavior. Don’t let yourself fall into that trap!

  1. He Lies to You

A healthy relationship is based on honesty, and you shouldn’t be expected to settle for anything less! No compromises! If he is lying to you, that shows that he doesn’t respect you enough to believe that you deserve the truth in your relationship. A gentleman will tell you the truth and face the consequences, regardless of how difficult that may be for them.

  1. He Makes You Cry on a Constant Basis

Relationships are not all sunshine and rainbows; however, they also shouldn’t be one constant, unending struggle to make your relationship work. If you find that you are always in tears, fighting situation after situation in your relationship, it may be time to walk away entirely.

  1. He Forces You into Sex

Being in a relationship in NO way states that you must have sex just because he demands it. If you are being coerced into sexual activities, whether you are single, dating or even married, that is still considered rape and it IS a crime. You should be in a relationship with someone who respects your boundaries and sees you as more than just a sex object.

  1. He is Extremely Jealous

Jealousy is a regular human emotion that many of us may experience from time to time in our lives; however, if he is exhibiting extreme feelings of jealousy on a regular basis then this is a sign of immaturity that you don’t’ need to be accepting. This desperate need for your attention at all times will eventually drive you insane, so deal with it now!

  1. He Uses You as an Emotional Punching Bag

Regardless of how much life is throwing his way, he should be willing to face his own problems without subjecting you to being collateral damage. If he comes home each time he has a hard day at work throwing a temper tantrum and targeting you with his negative emotions and behaviors, then he has issues that need to be addressed. He should respect you enough to protect and care for you, rather than taking out his anger and frustration on you.

  1. Flirting with Other Girls

If you are in a committed relationship, his attention should be on you and not the other options that exist around you. If he is unwilling to commit to you and you alone, it is time to rethink whether this is a relationship you wish to be in. Don’t allow him to explain this behavior away, there is no excuse for his need to play around with other women, even if it is ‘just flirting’.

  1. He Dictates How You Dress

Even when you are in a relationship, you are still your own independent person with your own freedom. If you find you are in a relationship in which he is controlling you to the point of removing this freedom, this is a sign that this isn’t a healthy situation for you to be in. It is okay to make comments such as pointing out that he loves a specific article of clothing on you, but there is a line that should not be crossed when it comes to just how much he can stipulate regarding what you can/can’t/should/shouldn’t wear.

  1. He is Unable to Handle His Alcohol

There is nothing wrong with a social drink from time to time, however, as an adult, your man should be able to control his alcohol intake when necessary. An inability to remain mature and handle how much he can/should drink at any given time may be an indicator of something far deeper, such as a mental health issue or a battle with addiction. If this is the case, he will require professional help, this is more than you should be required to manage.

  1. He Calls You Crazy

If you bring up a concern in your relationship, and his go-to response is to call you crazy, don’t be fooled! This is a tactic he uses to deflect the attention from his bad behavior, brushing the original accusations against him aside. Don’t let him change the topic! Bring the conversation right back to the topic at hand and if he refuses to acknowledge your concerns, he’s not worth your time!