Toxic People: 12 Things They Do and How to Deal with Them

The 12 Things Toxic People Do and How to Deal With Them

We have all had toxic people dust us with their poison. Sometimes it’s more like a drenching. Difficult people are drawn to the reasonable ones and all of us have likely had (or have) at least one person in our lives who have us bending around ourselves like barbed wire in endless attempts to please them – only to never really get there.

Their damage lies in their subtlety and the way they can engender that classic response, ‘It’s not them, it’s me.’ They can have you questioning your ‘over-reactiveness’, your ‘oversensitivity’, your ‘tendency to misinterpret’. If you’re the one who’s continually hurt, or the one who is constantly adjusting your own behaviour to avoid being hurt, then chances are that it’s not you and it’s very much them.

Being able to spot their harmful behaviour is the first step to minimising their impact. You might not be able to change what they do, but you can change what you do with it, and any idea that toxic somebody in your life might have that they can get away with it.

There are plenty of things toxic people do to manipulate people and situations to their advantage. Here are 12 of them. Knowing them will help you to avoid falling under the influence:

  1. They’ll keep you guessing about which version of them you’re getting.

    They’ll be completely lovely one day and the next you’ll be wondering what you’ve done to upset them. There often isn’t anything obvious that will explain the change of attitude – you just know something isn’t right. They might be prickly, sad, cold or cranky and when you ask if there’s something wrong, the answer will likely be ‘nothing’ – but they’ll give you just enough  to let you know that there’s something. The ‘just enough’ might be a heaving sigh, a raised eyebrow, a cold shoulder. When this happens, you might find yourself making excuses for them or doing everything you can to make them happy. See why it works for them?

    Stop trying to please them. Toxic people figured out a long time ago that decent people will go to extraordinary lengths to keep the people they care about happy. If your attempts to please aren’t working or aren’t lasting for very long, maybe it’s time to stop. Walk away and come back when the mood has shifted. You are not responsible for anybody else’s feelings. If you have done something unknowingly to hurt somebody, ask, talk about it and if need be, apologise. At any rate, you shouldn’t have to guess.

  1. They’ll manipulate.

    If you feel as though you’re the only one contributing to the relationship, you’re probably right. Toxic people have a way of sending out the vibe that you owe them something. They also have a way of taking from you or doing something that hurts you, then maintaining they were doing it all for you. This is particularly common in workplaces or relationships where the balance of power is out. ‘I’ve left that six months’ worth of filing for you. I thought you’d appreciate the experience and the opportunity to learn your way around the filing cabinets.’ Or, ‘I’m having a dinner party. Why don’t you bring dinner. For 10. It’ll give you a chance to show off those kitchen skills. K?’

    You don’t owe anybody anything. If it doesn’t feel like a favour, it’s not.

  2. They won’t own their feelings.

    Rather than owning their own feelings, they’ll act as though the feelings are yours. It’s called projection, as in projecting their feelings and thoughts onto you. For example, someone who is angry but won’t take responsibility for it might accuse you of being angry with them. It might be as subtle as, ‘Are you okay with me?’ or a bit more pointed, ‘Why are you angry at me,’ or, ‘You’ve been in a bad mood all day.’

    You’ll find yourself justifying and defending and often this will go around in circles – because it’s not about you. Be really clear on what’s yours and what’s theirs. If you feel as though you’re defending yourself too many times against accusations or questions that don’t fit, you might be being projected on to. You don’t have to explain, justify or defend yourself or deal with a misfired accusation. Remember that.

  3. They’ll make you prove yourself to them.

    They’ll regularly put you in a position where you have to choose between them and something else – and you’ll always feel obliged to choose them. Toxic people will wait until you have a commitment, then they’ll unfold the drama.  ‘If you really cared about me you’d skip your exercise class and spend time with me.’  The problem with this is that enough will never be enough. Few things are fatal – unless it’s life or death, chances are it can wait.

  4. They never apologise. 

    They’ll lie before they ever apologise, so there’s no point arguing. They’ll twist the story, change the way it happened and retell it so convincingly that they’ll believe their own nonsense.

    People don’t have to apologise to be wrong. And you don’t need an apology to move forward. Just move forward – without them. Don’t surrender your truth but don’t keep the argument going. There’s just no point. Some people want to be right more than they want to be happy and you have better things to do than to provide fodder for the right-fighters.

  5. They’ll be there in a crisis but they’ll never ever share your joy.

    They’ll find reasons your good news isn’t great news. The classics: About a promotion – ‘The money isn’t that great for the amount of work you’ll be doing.’ About a holiday at the beach – ‘Well it’s going to be very hot. Are you sure you want to go?’ About being made Queen of the Universe – ‘Well the Universe isn’t that big you know and I’m pretty sure you won’t get tea breaks.’ Get the idea? Don’t let them dampen you or shrink you down to their size. You don’t need their approval anyway – or anyone else’s for that matter.

  6. They’ll leave a conversation unfinished – and then they’ll go offline.

    They won’t pick up their phone. They won’t answer texts or emails. And in between rounds of their voicemail message, you might find yourself playing the conversation or argument over and over in your head, guessing about the status of the relationship, wondering what you’ve done to upset them, or whether they’re dead, alive or just ignoring you – which can sometimes all feel the same. People who care about you won’t let you go on feeling rubbish without attempting to sort it out. That doesn’t mean you’ll sort it out of course, but at least they’ll try. Take it as a sign of their investment in the relationship if they leave you ‘out there’ for lengthy sessions.

  7. They’ll use non-toxic words with a toxic tone.

    The message might be innocent enough but the tone conveys so much more. Something like, ‘What did you do today?’ can mean different things depending on the way it’s said. It could mean anything from ‘So I bet you did nothing – as usual,’ to ‘I’m sure your day was better than mine. Mine was awful. Just awful. And you didn’t even notice enough to ask.’ When you question the tone, they’ll come back with, ‘All I said was what did you do today,’ which is true, kind of, not really.

  8. They’ll bring irrelevant detail into a conversation.

    When you’re trying to resolve something important to you, toxic people will bring in irrelevant detail from five arguments ago. The problem with this is that before you know it, you’re arguing about something you did six months ago, still defending yourself, rather than dealing with the issue at hand. Somehow, it just always seems to end up about what you’ve done to them.

  9. They’ll make it about the way you’re talking, rather than what you’re talking about.

    You might be trying to resolve an issue or get clarification and before you know it, the conversation/ argument has moved away from the issue that was important to you and on to the manner in which you talked about it – whether there is any issue with your manner or not. You’ll find yourself defending your tone, your gestures, your choice of words or the way your belly moves when you breathe – it doesn’t even need to make sense. Meanwhile, your initial need is well gone on the pile of unfinished conversations that seems to grow bigger by the day.

  10. They exaggerate.

    ‘You always …’ ‘You never …’ It’s hard to defend yourself against this form of manipulation. Toxic people have a way of drawing on the one time you didn’t or the one time you did as evidence of your shortcomings. Don’t buy into the argument. You won’t win. And you don’t need to.

  11. They are judgemental.

    We all get it wrong sometimes but toxic people will make sure you know it. They’ll judge you and take a swipe at your self-esteem suggesting that you’re less than because you made a mistake. We’re all allowed to get it wrong now and then, but unless we’ve done something that affects them nobody has the right to stand in judgement.

Knowing the favourite go-to’s for toxic people will sharpen your radar, making the manipulations easier to spot and easier to name. More importantly, if you know the characteristic signs of a toxic person, you’ll have a better chance of catching yourself before you tie yourself in double knots trying to please them.

Some people can’t be pleased and some people won’t be good for you – and many times that will have nothing to do with you. You can always say no to unnecessary crazy. Be confident and own your own faults, your quirks and the things that make you shine. You don’t need anyone’s approval but remember if someone is working hard to manipulate, it’s probably because they need yours. You don’t always have to give it but if you do, don’t let the cost be too high.



Toxic mom and toxic daughter? For some reason when one of these two people (who are supposed to be two of the most important people in my life) ask or want me to do something, they inflict GUILT when I don’t do what they want. Both of them are needy, constantly want favors from me, and call me about every other day depressed and crying about something that isn’t making them “happy” in life.

It’s sad to say that I’m sick of them both. Mom is 92 and daughter is 33. I’m cutting off about all communication with them and it hurts but I just can’t take it. “I love you I love you, do a favor for me…. feel sorry for me…. I’m so depressed…” I seriously can NOT take it anymore after years on end. I keep thinking maybe I need help but it’s not me. I’ve never had a problem with happiness until I became entangled with these black holes of need. THEY need to find something to make themselves happy and it isn’t called ME!


I have been quite unlucky to have three of this sort of persons in my life,1 being my oldest son who has married a girl worse than him and my husband is the same as them they are such bitter hateful twisted people and the next day they go reasonabley nice and so on like a roller coaster but let me tell you it does not get better but worse day by day till you ask yourself is it you there that good a lot harder to get out of than people realise.

Denise B

What do you think of a “friend” that CONSTANTLY make plans with you, call all day , then cancel at the last minute. This person wants to be close to your family and friends but not theirs. For some reason claims they hate to go out with a group, just you and them. They talk about people behind their back to you but go really ballistic if they think someone is talking about them. Call and talk to you for hours about a problem they’re having with another person but for decades never introduce you to this person. Constantly asking for favors, complaining about something that has aready been addressed, has that whoa is me mentally, looking for you to do tasks that they would never do for you. This is a 25 years “friendship.” What’s going on? Is this one to let go?


My daughter 17, lives with her toxic mom. Daughter has extreme anxiety and AMPS perhaps caused by mom. Daughter now understanding the toxicity and now contacting me more, she is in a bit of crisis as mom is not taking daughter for psych help or meds and daughter wants the help. Mom is turning up toxic behaviors now that daughter is talking to me. Please help.

Need guidance…it’s really bad…daughter is always in fear of making mom mad…mom makes kids feel like dirt if they talk to dad…mom has such a grip on daughter, daughter does not have strength to leave. What options do I have


I don’t let toxic people bother me. It’s too much energy giving them my emotions. I just live my life right in front of them. I don’t need to blocked them out or cut them off in my life. God says he will prepare a table for my enemies right in front of them. I leave all doors of communication open so that they can watch me feast at my table of blessings. I believe, reacting to their actions shows that I’ve been effected by their behavior. I have other things to focus my energy on.


Whitney sounds like you have such a strong force of family and friends that are all living an authentic loving Godly life. It’s so hard to believe you could ever have any toxic enemies who deserve being ignored and left to watch what a fulfilling life you lead.


Could be in her workplace it does not have to be in a personal relationship..some people are just so toxic that they cannot stand the thought of anyone around them being happy.

C. R

I really appreciate what you said. You are so right. I am working on myself to get to that point.


Thank you for saying this. It conveys the best message to everyone who is willing to really understand what you are saying. You go girl live your beautiful life as I will live mine this way too from hence forth.


Another common behaviour of a toxic person is that he/she always feels the need to develop separate and close relationships with the other people they think are close to you or people who they know you will go to for advice.

Before you know it you have no other close friend who is not also their friend.

This is a strategy to ensure that they have an important role and a presence in every aspect and every relationship in your life.

This behaviour is supposed to create an intricate web for you that makes it more difficult to break free from the toxic person.

A toxic person will often question why you go to, say, Sam or Daisy when you have a problem rather than running to them. They have made it their duty to know Sam and Daisy personally and want you to think that there is nothing others can do for you that they are not capable of.

Lowflyin Lolana

You’re right, and they can ruin your life, if you consider the people you care about to be the meaning of your life. They can, to take it a step further, make those people believe things about you that are not true. Some of your friends will stick with you, but if the manipulator is also a liar, and a good one, this is a bad path.

If you have a tendency to believe you are at fault (because of whatever past messages/tapes that may be in your head) then you will be super susceptible to these folks.

Not everything is someone else’s fault, but it’s absolutely true that some people get manipulated. I was one of those people. I was always willing to assume I was in the wrong, and give another chance to the offender, even if there was no recognition of hurt.

Meanwhile, as these friendships progressed (more than one over a period of years) my internal compass would start to falter, and life fails would multiply when someone like this would get close to me.

These people can shake your confidence so deeply. Your mis-steps, under this influence, will work to the advantage of those who want to see you go down–because the less confident you become, the more you will make those mis-steps. Then that person can point to those missteps as proof that you need their help (and they are Concerned, and Love you). They will use it as evidence that you aren’t good enough on your own. This is what can really break a person down.

I still wonder about some of these past experiences. It really does seem there are people who just don’t care if they hurt other people. My experience is that they blame the people they hurt. Another experience is that they will lie about the friendship, and things that occurred, to other people, and to themselves, and to the person who’s been hurt. (Example: you’re too insecure, I didn’t mean it that way, It was just a joke, You need to get some Therapy if you’re offended because that’s about you not me, etc etc.)
It’s a terrible cycle when they involve other people—-really bad. If there’s no one in your circle out of reach of that person’s influence—you will start to believe them. And they win.
Don’t let them win!


Blind me, you have hit the nail on the head there….al of the above but more so your comments was/is very much y ex. She got to meet my ex, exchange phone numbers etc but later didn’t like me confiding in my ex as a friend!! I thought it was just me but having read your comments I couldn’t have put it better.


If you are stuck in a toxic relationship, no matter for how long, turn and round and walk away. Seriously. I have spent a couple of years with someone affected by Borderline personality disorder, just to stumble into my next relationship with someone who turned out to be a toxic person after a year into the relationship.

No matter how strong you are, no matter how much you try to improve the situation or the daily life, it will never work out. There is a reason why it is called “toxic” – because it slowly kills you. I consider myself as a very strong personality, but being exposed to weirdness or craziness for years really can break you apart.

If you really believe your love is strong enough to get this person to change, seek for professional help. You will try to talk, rationalise, explain and discuss forever and ever, but it will never change. It will not happen, believe me. I had tried for years, tried everything, but if the person just does not see his or her actions as wrong or hurting, all your attempts are in vain. Eventually you will feel smaller and worse than you have ever been. You can only lose, there is no way of winning.
Especially if this person tends to control you, your actions, your schedule, your social interactions – there will be nothing left of you or who you once were. Do one comparison: Check how often this person socialises with others or how often that person wants to stick with you instead. Then check how often you met your friends in the past and how often you see them now. If there is a big difference, you are already stuck in the vicious cycle. Break out. Run.


No one could have ever made me believe that the letter I’m about to write would actually one day be written. I was the world’s biggest skeptic. I never believed in magic spells or anything like that, but I was told by a reliable source (a very close co-worker) that Dr Mack is a very dedicated, gifted, and talented person, and after much “cajoling,” she (my co-worker) got me to visit email DR_MACK@ YAHOO .COM. It was one of the best things I have ever done. My love life was in shambles; I had been through two divorces and was on the brink of a third. I just couldn’t face another divorce, and I wanted to try harder to make our relationship work, but my husband didn’t seem to care. So, with nothing but my pride to lose, I checked it out. I was flabbergasted. Dr Mack is for REAL. He did whatever magic he does, and lo and behold – not more than TWO DAYS later, I had my husband back! It was like a miracle! He suddenly wanted to go to marriage counseling, and we’re doing very, very well, on the road to recovery! Love and Many Blessings Back to You!_?..?


My guardians are like this anyway by august I’ll be leaving them for good to my own family before they kill me with their toxic nature the most annoying part is them acting like a saint making you feel bad almost all the time


My mom’s like this. Her attitude also includes making excuses for not doing things she claims would like to do. A recent example from yesterday is her saying she won’t see my kid every day when school starts and I told her she could do the after school pick up. “But what if I have to work?” You can’t arrange to have an early shift or get the day off once a week in four months?


Just about sums up my sister.Thankfully after years of her being utterly vile to me and the threat of her divulging a secret .Ive come clean and told the people I care about the most in my life.Ive taken away her power and it feels great! I would tell anyone going through similar situation to bite the bullet and talk. Once they have no power over you it’s such a massive relief. I’ve cut all ties from her and am moving on with the eternal love and support from my wonderful family ❤


Seems like I am a toxic people magnet…although I have been toxic too. I am more aware of it now and try not to be. People have no idea. There are so many screwed up people in the world.


My mother isnt exactly like this but she wont recognize her own mistake, she keeps on saying that I am the one with problems. And I always admit my problems Its so sad that she doesnt. She wont and will never change.

Debbie Brown

I had a friend that was very toxic to her friend and it was so bad that it killed her.


What about someone who will point out every little thing they think needs to be done and instead of doing it themselves they expect you to do it. Then blame you when it doesn’t get done. Not like there is any physical reason why they can’t do it themselves. Is it control issues, testing, fear of making a mistake?


Some of the points you’ve mentioned in the article are things I’ve noticed in my own relationship with a sibling of mine. Any little petty thing I might have done will be met with aggression via text or through social media. The messages never stick to the topic and always go off on tangents where they start belittling me about how they FEEL about me. When I go to confront them personally. not even a day after, they act as if nothing has happened using excuses like “You always try to make it an argument,” etc. Well, yeah, of course, I want an argument since you clearly want drama. They’ll walk off and make it seem like it’s my problem. Now my nieces look at me like I’m crazy. Guess I just have to be content with the fact we don’t live together.


Did rewrite the whole 8 pages essay for the group. A lot better than the old bad version obviously. Not even a word of Thanks…from them. They think they are always right…what a human attitude. TOXIC PEOPLE! Shame to them P,A,C,J…


I’m really with you on that one Jack! I have him and his toxic wife to deal with! Double whammy. . He’s never supported me even financially and now that I actually need him to pay for my college tuition these next few years are stressing me . . I cant wait to cut them off and move on finally . . I’ve been through over a decade of baggage


This describes my mom and some of her family very well. It has been so difficult with her over the years and finally she has mellowed out in some ways as she got older. It has left deep scares that will never heal. I still have problems with toxic people that I work with who show the above traits. I suffer in silence often and somehow I attract them to me.

Linsdley D

I’m experiencing this now after dating this person for just 4 years. These past years have been questioning and its getting no better. Reading this has helped Me confirm I am not the problem in this relationship. Thanks and MILLION!!!!

Bear P

Mixed feelings about this article. Some examples:
#1. So they have emotions? Grumpy, angry, happy, you never know what you’re going to get! Sounds like most people I know. – I will say the “what’s wrong?, “Nothing” (with body language saying something is DEFINITELY wrong) is frustrating, but what can you do?
#5. My personal philosophy is apologies are meaningless, both given and received. Ok, so it means I/you feel bad, but does it solve anything or change what happened? I got this philosophy after my step dad beat my mom then apologized, then repeated over and over. Apologies are dumb. I don’t like apologizing, I’d rather just change my behavior.
#s 8 and 10: one(8) criticizes THEIR tone, then the other (10) warns that they will criticise YOUR tone. Seems hypocritical. What is being said AND the way it is said are both important.

All in all, some good points as well. I would love to see a tie-in or a related article that illustrates the ways to be non-toxic/healthy and avoid doing these things yourself.

I’m having a hard time w/ a family member. I don’t honestly know if I’m toxic or they are, but we seem to fight a lot even though we love each other. I don’t want to hurt or be hurt.


I’ve been researching Narcisstic Personality Disorder for about a year now due to my seperation & divorce to my husband of just 18 months. I have realized that my mother and little sister are narcissistic as well. I’m actually awake right now from defending myself yet again on a 3 day argument all because I said okay in responding to a message while I was busy with my “6” children.

My ex husband is the one who made me feel feel the need to research and diagnose whatever it is that was wrong due to how extreme his traits were. He injured his knee and had surgery that was to leave him out of work for about 1-2 months. He was out for 14 months. During 5 his time he began creating fake Facebook accounts using his real pics and a similar (fake) name. He left them on public and this is when the entire small town in Alabama became aware of his ways. He had hundreds of half naked females as his friends and made sexual advances to females at our church, kids school, ball coach, friends and even my own sisters. I was in the middle of protecting my kids from their father allowing them to be abused under his roof so I tried to reason with Jim even begging him to stop just until we make sure the kids are safe. He didn’t care. He said it was my fault an any efforts of reasoning with him made him irate and accuse me of putting him down. His mother backed him up which made him worse. I truly believe he hit a world record with talking to hundreds of females a day. I left and divorced him while he blamed me for everything. An never felt remorse
A narcissistic person cannot feel remorse or empathy for others. They will not own anything they do and if they do apologize and act as if they want or need you…’s a hoax and their plot to manipulate you for whatever it is that you have that they want. It’s temporary and the real them will return shortly. These people will drain you and suck every ounce of happiness out of your life. They cannot change without intense YEARS of therapy or a Devine miracle from God. But first they have to acknowledge it and we’ll that just isn’t gonna happen not for real.
I thought I had become an expert with this toxic behavior until my sister has accused me of being selfish and careless and threatened to disown me again because I replied “ok” after she messaged me about her friend yelling at her when she asked him to buy a lunch able for her son to eat at school Monday. I replied “well he’s not a keeper, what what a jerk, screw him, and then I asked if she had applied for free lunch. She replied that he had never at at school and is picky and he will go all day not eating . I didn’t know what to respond so I said ok. I was in the middle of my new chore chart for my kids to follow and had to clean my mess up off off the bed so my husband could go to bed. So now 3 days later I’m defending myself when I’m called selfish and threatened to never speak to me again. We already live 5 hours away and I usually panic and try to correct where I went wrong but this is just too ridiculous and I’m out. I have decided to not walk on egg shells anymore. If she wants to talk I will but I can’t explain myself again and be told how bad I am for then explaining myself. I’ve apologized 9 times and she has blocked every source of communication yet fusses that I’m not calling her to others. I chose sanity and normalcy and I’m out. This is the only thing I know to do to make my life brighter. I’m the most selfless and honest person I know. I do that I can for everyone and I take criticism fairly good but this now isn’t me at all this is her and I have to do as the serenity prayer states and have the wisdom to accept the things I cannot change and move on .God Bless


I’m leaving a longtime acquaintance behind because I’ve recently realized she’s toxic. She uses our time together to talk about her health concerns that are anxiety-fueled, how unfair her work demands are and to concentrate on whatever I say to the nth degree when I’m only stating how I feel and what I’m doing about it. I really like the post about judgment…hell yes we all judge and we should to keep ourselves safe and on track not to classify our fellow humans as ‘good’ and ‘bad’ but to discover what’s in our best interests.


This is why we keep moving far away and keep our visits with the inlaws short. The mask only lasts a few days, and then the behaviors start…


Wow! Sometimes I think I’m the only one that has troubles with Inlaws. TJ I’m hearing you buddy. I in fact have trouble with all of them though. SIL and BIL too?. Comes down to a very controlling, manipulative and toxic mother inlaw and a SIL that has family issues that competes to be top dog to the MIL. I’ve put up with it for 20 years and have finally snapped. Now they’re all are against me. Makes it hard on my kids and husband. You’re lucky…..I wish I could move. Would love to know how you have delt with things. Cheers ?


I love this article because its not about being right or better then the other it’s about self improvement, finding happiness in ourselves and how to be better with each other. It’s not about “me” or “I” but it is about “us”.


My girlfriend is exactly this. She really loves me and I love her. But she’s just like this..she has her moments of being amazing. But then she has her days of being toxic exactly like this. Super accurate. All I want to know is what do I do when she’s so toxic. How do I not let it hurt me or let it get to me ? Help me please…


What do you do…simply walk away..Go for a a ‘sane friend… She will want to be right..shr will want to control you ..if sje nerfs to she will use manipulation ..loopholes..or lies…..This will eventually test your self esteem …Do not give her that power!!!! Record your conversations and listen to them later…this is what opened my eyes to the heartbreaking truth..Most of all.
Remember ..the truth will set you free.


I am writing a long story about my experiences with several toxic people, and one person in particular; for now I will just comment so as to receive notifications. This is an amazing article, and a great thread.


“She really loves me and I love her BUT….”
(Im quoting you.)
The “BUT” is your answer. The word but negates everything spoken before it. If Love was truly present, there would be no “BUT” in your sentence.


Also, understand that toxic behavior should “get to you”.
Does physical injury not cause physical pain? Of course! Why? Well, pain serves as a self-preservation signal. Pain alerts us to danager and injury so we know we need to care for ourselves in some way.
Similiarly, Emotional and Mental injury and toxicity should “get to you”. Its your body mind signaling you to walk away.

Stop putting your hand on the flame and trying to withstand the pain. Stop trying to love what isnt loving.

Just stop, and walk away.


All good except for the comment on judgement. EVERYONE has the right to stand in judgement. And you absolutely must.

Don’t judge me. Why on earth would someone feel the need to say that?

I’ll tell you why, because they are planning to do something breathtakingly awful and want to force you into a non judgemental cage before they do so.

If you hear those words judge with all your might and may I suggest you consider fleeing.

What does judge mean though? It doesn’t mean gossiping. It doesn’t mean trying to harm someone. It doesn’t even mean trying to stop them. It just means exercising your right to use your judgement and if you find their behaviour wanting, leave.

Feel free to judge me. You definitely already have been doing so It’s what we do, we use our judgement to gauge how dangerous or otherwise a situation or person is. Feel free to judge. It’s your right to do so and it’s how you protect yourself.

And be very careful of anyone who tells you otherwise.


AMD … HALLELUJAH. You are a light in the darkness – I didn’t think there were any of us left who understand this. Thought they’d all been engulfed by the nothingness. Live long & prosper.


? what in the world Amd? What you said makes ZERO sense. I get your principal but your applied math here ….. holy cow ??‍♀️


Thank you, thank you, thank you. You are absolutely on the mark about this. Judgement is how we make our way in the world. It has been turned into a dirty word by the narcissists who want you to exhibit ‘unconditional love’ – thereby shortcircuiting your ability to judge their actions in an appropriate manner.


I love this article because ive been in a relationship for 7 years. And i continuously try to make this person happy. And no matter what its always my fault. Til this day i cant have a reasonable discussion with this person about difficult situations weve been through. And the result of it is us not being together.and its all “my fault”.


It wasn’t your fault, you tried to make them happy and they just ended up leaving you and blaming you. That person doesn’t deserve you. You did your part and tried to be a good partner and they fucked up not you. I’m sorry you had to go through that and I hope you’re okay and find someone who deserves you!


I love this topic. It’s sad when you have a family member who uses toxic tones in their conversation. I dont plan on dealing with this person on a day to day basis anymore. They will be lucky to see me once a month. This person has never known how to talk to people. Other family members dont like them so much. We love this person but we don’t like them.

Carolyn E

right….you can love them but don’t have to like their ways…you can love them from a distance and save yourself a lot of grief….:-)


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I LOVE being able to work with early childhood centres and schools. The most meaningful, enduring moments of growth and healing happen on those everyday moments kids have with their everyday adults - parents, carers, teachers. It takes a village doesn’t it.♥️
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Sydney! We’re coming to you. The Resilient Kids Conference is a one day event for parents and professionals who live and work with kids and teens. 

Can’t make it? There’s now an ONLINE option so you can watch from anywhere in the world, with the recording available for 4 weeks after the conference. 

I’ll be talking about anxiety in young people, but this information is relevant for ALL OF US. We need to  change the way we think about anxiety and respond to it - so let’s talk about how. I’ll give you practical, meaningful ways to support and strengthen your kids and teens with in ways that will serve them not just for now, but for the rest of their lives. 

Two things I know for certain. 1. All kids have it in them to be brave and do the things that feel bigger than them sometimes. 2. Parents and their important adults have the most profound capacity to strengthen kids and teens against anxiety and build their confidence and courage. 

I love these conferences and I know parents walk out feeling excited and empowered. 

Since 2016, the Resilient Kids Conferences have attracted up to 800 attendees at a single event. It is beyond beautiful to see parents, educators, and many other professionals stream through the doors in anticipation of a soul fulfilling experience. By the end of the day their faces are beaming, and so is our teams. It’s a community of people, redefining resilience together.

I’ll be joining Maggie Dent, Michelle Mitchell, and Dr Justin Coulson. In person, online and group license tickets are available for this event.

Tickets (online and live). Link in bio.
When times feel uncertain or your own anxiety feels big, come home to the things that make sense. 

Come home to each other, to stillness, to play, to rest, and conversation. 

Come home to listening more openly and caring more deeply, to nature, and warm baths, and being more deliberate, to fighting for what we can control, and the soft surrender to what we can’t. 

Come home to stories, and music, and to the safety of your tribe. 

Come home to that part of you that is timeless, and strong, and still, and wise, and which knows that, like everything that has ever felt bigger than you for a while, you will get them and you through this.♥️
Separation anxiety can come with a tail whip - not only does it swipe at kids, but it will so often feel brutal for their important adults too.

If your child struggle to separate at school, or if bedtimes tougher than you’d like them to be, or if ‘goodbye’ often come with tears or pleas to stay, or the ‘fun’ from activities or play dates get lost in the anxiety of being away from you, I hear you.

There’s a really good reason for all of these, and none of them have anything to do with your parenting, or your child not being ‘brave enough’. Promise. And I have something for you. 

My 2 hour on-demand separation anxiety webinar is now available for purchase. 

This webinar is full of practical, powerful strategies and information to support your young person to feel safer, calmer, and braver when they are away from you. 

We’ll explore why separation anxiety happens and powerful strategies you can use straight away to support your child. Most importantly, you’ll be strengthening them in ways that serve them not just for now but for the rest of their lives.

Access to the recording will be available for 30 days from the date of purchase.

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