Although romantic relationships are fun and rewarding, they can also be complicated. There are many issues that a union can potentially face, and one of such issues is feeling like you are walking on eggshells around your partner. What does this mean, and how do you deal with it?
Do you usually struggle to understand your partner's mood? Perhaps, it is highly changeable, and they can be loving but sometimes get angry and unpredictable?
Or perhaps, you are insecure and afraid of how they would handle a situation? There is a chance that you are walking on egg shells around them, and our article will help you understand what to do in such situations.
Walking on eggshells meaning
What does it mean when someone says walking on eggshells?
According to the Cambridge Dictionary, walking on eggshells definition is being very careful not to offend someone or do anything wrong.
Therefore, if you walk on eggshells around a particular person, it means that you are trying really hard not to trigger a negative reaction from them, which is why you are watching your every word and step.
Is walking on eggshells a metaphor?
This expression is a metaphor. Since it is particularly hard to walk on egg shells without breaking them, and you are supposed to be careful not to do so, this comparison is often applied to relationships where the person feels unsafe to express their real self.
Walking on eggshells relationship causes
This type of behavior means that you are afraid to upset your partner and are unable to predict their response. Therefore, you try very hard to avoid their outbursts by hiding some information or being very cautious by finding the right words to tell them.
There may be various reasons why you act this way. Perhaps, you have really low self-esteem or a history of abuse, so you are unreasonably afraid of their reaction, when in fact, they are not going to react this way.
However, if they have already made you feel unsafe on a few occasions and have displayed an angry or violent reaction to normal everyday situations, this is not a healthy relationship. In fact, it can be classified as emotional abuse.
If you are being abused, the only logical way out would be to leave the toxic environment. It may be hard and challenging, but doing what is best for yourself is an act of bravery.
How to stop walking on eggshells around your partner
To stop walking on eggshells around your partner, you should recognize the cause of such behavior and the reasons why you act this way. Perhaps, it is your insecurity, and it stems from being hurt in the past.
It can also be your partner's genuine mistake and some underlying problems they are willing to recognize and work on.
Here is what you could do in such cases.
1. Work on your confidence
Your love life hugely depends on your self-love and awareness, as well as your mental wellbeing. It is up to you to learn to know and love yourself. This will significantly improve the quality of your romantic relationships with others.
You have to remember that every person is different, and we have all been raised in different circumstances. Learning to understand and feel the other person will help you build stronger unions with people.
2. Improve your communication
If two parties in a relationship have poor communication, it can cause a lot of underlying issues and resentment. In this situation, both people can feel like they are walking on eggshells around each other.
In case you find yourself in this position and feel like you are struggling to understand your partner, it is a sign that you should work on your communication and mutual understanding. Tiptoeing around each other and pretending everything is fine will definitely lead to outbursts and fights.
You can learn to ask if they are okay or if they are upset with you. In return, you should encourage them to do the same, and with time, your issues may be clearly communicated and resolved.
3. Set boundaries
There are relationships that are not particularly unhealthy, but your partner's mood may change quickly, and it is hard for you to predict their shift. If they are willing to work on it, you may choose to set some boundaries in your relationship.
You can explain to them that whenever they lash out at you for your mistakes, it makes you feel uncomfortable and offended. Perhaps, they do not realize how much they hurt you and are willing to work towards a healthier union.
4. Support your partner if they decide to get help
If your significant other has made the decision to get professional help to solve the issue, you need to encourage and support them. The problem may be caused by some trauma or mental health disorders.
You need to try and understand the situation and why they are acting this way. However, not forgetting about your own needs is important, and if the situation is not getting better, you should think of what is best for you.
5. Establish new rules and make new memories
It is a positive sign if you have noticed changes in your partner's behavior and are not feeling like you are walking on eggshells anymore. It means that your relationship has improved and is not so unhealthy anymore, and your union has the potential to be strong.
You and your partner have to reconnect and move past the bad times. It is also important for them to identify specific triggers that provoke their behavior and try to work particularly hard on overcoming their bad response to these.
Walking on eggshells in an abusive relationship
What has been described above is a positive scenario, when both partners are prepared to recognize the problems and try hard to right the wrongs. However, there is still another type of relationship - the one that you should preferably leave as soon as possible, as it is emotionally abusive.
Here are some signs that your partner is toxic, and it will not be possible to help them. The best way out for you would be to gather the courage to leave the relationship.
- Their outbursts and anger displays have become intense and disproportionate to the situation.
- You feel less happy and confident since being in a relationship with them.
- You feel like you are in a "roller coaster" union.
- They are unable to see how their words and actions affect other people.
- Your arguments can go for days, and they make no effort to end them, even continuing them when it is unnecessary.
- They lash out at the smallest of instances.
- They have been physically violent towards you.
- You never feel relaxed around this person.
- They are destructive and tend to throw things around.
- They often apologize for their actions but then repeat them again, and it seems to be a never-ending circle.
- You do not feel like they are able to show love and empathy towards you or other people, yet they always demand it for themselves.
- You feel scared to talk about your issues to anyone out of fear that they may hurt you.
- They frequently humiliate you to elevate their own self-esteem.
- Their anger is not just simple anger, but rage.
- You constantly feel like everything is your fault and try to make it right.
These signs indicate that they are an emotionally unstable person. Before they do some serious harm to you, it is strongly recommended to remove yourself from this dangerous situation and research domestic abuse services that may provide you some safety and advice.
Walking on eggshells around your partner indicates that something is wrong in your relationship. It is up to you to decide your next move, will you stay with them and try to make things right, or will you leave?
What are the main signs of drifting apart in a relationship? If those apply to you, it may be best to let the person go and build a new life for yourself.