Some Couples Are So ‘In Love’ It’s Actually Toxic

There’s a fine line between being fully comfortable in love and being in a codependent relationship. Some couples fall into a trap where they become so obsessed with their partner that they lose their own identity.

It’s hard to understand why some couples behave this way, but it’s nearly impossible to ignore once you’re aware of it. It’s a performative type of affection that starts to take over their lives. If you’re still unsure about what kind of couple I’m describing, read on to check out the characteristics of a couple that is so “in love” it’s actually problematic.

At What Point Does Love Become Obsession?

Penn Badgley on set for Netflix's You
Photo Credit: MovieStillsDB / Netflix
Photo Credit: MovieStillsDB / Netflix

Usually, these relationships seem healthy from the outside. But problems arise when someone is unable to go more than 30 minutes without mentioning their partner, if they have a constant habit of rerouting the conversation back to their relationship, or they’ve got a tendency to overshare personal information about their SO.

You might be able to think of someone like this fairly quickly. It seems like there’s always one person in your life who, to put it bluntly, just can’t shut the heck up about their partner.

An Important Part Of Their Relationship Is Making Sure People Know About It

Couple with pillows at beach
Photo Credit: Anastasiya Lobanovskaya / Pexels
Photo Credit: Anastasiya Lobanovskaya / Pexels

When it comes to these couples, you’d actually be surprised at how many times they’re able to work the fact that they are dating/engaged/married to someone into an average conversation.

Part of their identity becomes being “taken” and they’re willing to tell whoever will listen, even strangers.

They Can’t See How Bad They Are

Couple hang on to each other and stability bars on subway transit
Photo Credit: cottonbro / Pexels
Photo Credit: cottonbro / Pexels

A lot of couples completely lack the self-awareness to realize that they are in fact behaving the exact same as the cringe relationships they like to make fun of.

It’s always easier to judge people’s relationships from the outside, but it’s much more difficult to turn judgmental eyes toward your own relationship.

They See Relationships As A Competition

Three women socialize on patio holding beers
Photo Credit: ELEVATE / Pexels
Photo Credit: ELEVATE / Pexels

I’ll provide an example: while having dinner with a group of friends, you casually mention that your SO landed a new job and you’re excited. Before you can finish telling your friends about the accomplishment, the toxic relationship friend is already telling everyone about their SO’s new promotion, car, house, or whatever it is.

There’s a competitive trait these couples have that makes them try to one-up any other couples in their lives, and it often ends up pushing their friends away.

They Can’t Make A Decision Without Consulting Their SO

Woman wearing headphones talks on cell phone
Photo Credit: Heather McKean / Unsplash
Photo Credit: Heather McKean / Unsplash

Something as simple as deciding whether or not to go out for a social after work always turns into “I need to check with my boyfriend before I say yes.”

In a healthy relationship, nobody needs to get permission to go about their lives. Of course, it is courteous to tell your partner what’s up, but you don’t need to check in with anyone.

They Have A Constant Need For Communication

Girl holding clothing over her arm texting on phone
Photo Credit: mentatdgt / Pexels
Photo Credit: mentatdgt / Pexels

Another trait of these couples is their inability to go more than a few hours without checking in on their partner.

These relationships function based on a regular need for reassurance and attention that can only be accomplished with constant communication.

Communication Is Important, But It’s Also Important To Know When To Limit It

Group of friends hanging out having dinner
Photo Credit: Nicole Herrero / Unsplash
Photo Credit: Nicole Herrero / Unsplash

Don’t get me wrong, there’s absolutely nothing wrong with wanting to talk to your partner and being excited to tell them things that happened to you throughout the day.

The problem occurs when a person can’t get through a regular day or task without feeling the need to call their SO for input or “just to check in.” While communication is a pillar of a healthy relationship, it’s also important to know when to limit it.

They Spam Social Media With Relationship Pictures

Couple on couch both on smartphones
Photo Credit: Klaus Nielsen / Pexels
Photo Credit: Klaus Nielsen / Pexels

If you’re ever feeling single or lonely, these are the couples to mute online. Staged and filtered pictures on social media do not tell the whole story, but that’s not what these couples would have you believe.

For these toxic couples, performing on social media is often as important as performing in-person, and you bet they have fights over how often they end up on each other’s Instagram grids.

They Style Themselves The Way Their Partner Likes

Couple sit on park bench wearing similar jeans and same shoes
Photo Credit: Djim Loic / Unsplash
Photo Credit: Djim Loic / Unsplash

A toxic trait of these couples is when one person fully loses their identity in the relationship.

For instance: growing your hair long because your boyfriend likes it, avoiding wearing certain clothes because your girlfriend doesn’t like the way they fit, getting tattoos because your partner loves them. It starts small but can spiral out of control fairly quickly.

They Always Prioritize Their Partner, Even If It Is Not Reciprocated

Two women sit on couch looking solemn/quiet
Photo Credit: cottonbro / Pexels
Photo Credit: cottonbro / Pexels

Dividing our attention is an important part of life. If someone is unable to prioritize themselves, their friends, and family the same way that they do their partner, they are over-investing in their relationship.

Being in a relationship should not force you to sacrifice your other priorities, especially if your partner isn’t willing to modify their behavior to the same extent.