Does Your Relationship Suffer Toxic Conflict?
If I tell you that something you have done is disturbing or unacceptable to me, and you reply by attacking me… then we are in trouble, and so is our relationship. Abusive relationships are fertile ground for this kind of interaction.
The perpetrator does not bring empathy to the interaction and cannot see what is presented from their partner’s experience. Instead, all that is heard is a “criticism.” With the perceived criticism on the table, discomfort sets in… precipitating a reflexive externalization of blame and, in some cases, an outright assault on the “criticizer.”