12 Common Phrases Toxic Partners Say

It’s easy to say hurtful things when your emotions run high, but you should try controlling yourself. They can cause harm to others and even cause a relationship to terminate, even if that was not your intention. 

Understanding what it means to be toxic is essential before learning about toxic individuals or harmful things to say. Toxic means dangerous, poisonous, or damaging. Two examples are ingesting a poisonous substance or being bitten by a poisonous animal.

Words are that powerful, too, they can pierce the soul.

In relationships, many toxic statements can also be manipulative terms. It’s like locking your partner in a cage and making them feel responsible for anything that goes wrong. 

The apparently harmless nature of such statements makes it difficult for most individuals to set boundaries when they are used.

We have put together 12 common phrases toxic partners say that you might not have indicated as toxic.

1. “You are lucky to have me.”

“You are lucky to have me.”
Beautiful depressed woman sitting on bed while her angry boyfriend yells at the background

Toxic partners would want to make you feel less of yourself. They would try to remind you of how many other interests they have, how you are not their class or up to their standards. This is why they could jokingly say things like: “You are lucky to have me.”

Avoid making your lover feel like they’re not deserving of affection. This toxic phrase implies superiority over your spouse and is meant to insult them. By stating this, you indicate that they don’t deserve respect and should be happy that you “put up” with them.

Try replacing that with something like, “I’m so glad we found each other,” or “We make a great couple, don’t you think?”

2. “But…”


It’s not a terrible word, and it’s often employed to make a point. Toxic things to say in a relationship include using this phrase as a competitive weapon against your partner.

You and your significant other can be having a casual conversation in which you share an interest you have with them. As you else speaks, they mentally digest what you are saying in order to formulate a negative response.

No matter what you say, they will always have a “but” response to put out your fire. They won’t let up until you give in.

Say you have shown an interest in returning to school, they will tell you something like, “But you’re too old for that.” 

Can you see how this word might be harmful? By injecting your statements with negativity every time you share something with them. “but” users are preventing their partners from pursuing their dreams.

3. “Relax.”

Too emotional. Unhappy sad emotional woman listening to her husband and crying while sitting on the sofa

Toxic partners usually gaslight you by telling you to ‘relax’, even when they agitate you. It is another way to dismiss how you feel by acting like you are overreacting.

You shouldn’t say this to your significant other, especially if they have an emotional investment in what they’re saying. They aren’t looking for help; they just need some of your attention. Try to listen and avoid saying “relax”.

4. “Look what you made me do.”

Look what you made me do h
Family conflict, quarrel, misunderstanding. The woman shouts at her husband, in despair, crying. requires explanation. The man listens, covering his face with his hands. Sitting on the couch at home.

Putting the blame on your partner is never a good idea. Toxic partners would make their significant other take responsibility for everything that happens. It doesn’t matter if you were trying to help, they will dismiss your intention and blame you when it goes wrong.

They won’t acknowledge you when it goes well but blame you when they make mistakes.

Recognising that no one is in command of you, but yourself is crucial in every relationship. If you make your partner take full responsibility for everything, they may start to feel controlled or doubt your commitment.

What you should say is something like, “I take full responsibility for this” or “I’m sorry for what happened.” I’m sorry for allowing this to happen.” Blaming them for your actions is simply toxic.

5. “Calm down.”

Calm down

This is just like ‘relax’, a toxic partner can invalidate your feelings by telling you to calm down. If you are not conscious of this as a toxic phrase, you may begin to think you are truly overreacting and need to calm down, whereas your partner was only gaslighting you.

Saying “calm down” to your partner at their angriest is one of the most aggravating and damaging things you can do. It’s best to just listen to them rant without interfering. Avoid using harmful platitudes that encourage unhelpful behaviour. The two of you will be able to relax once your companion has finished venting.

6. “I can’t do this; I will leave you.” 

I can’t do this; I will leave you
Girlfriend leaving her boyfriend. Concept of breakup when man does not want to split up

Giving ultimatums or threats are not qualities of a healthy partnership. You start to worry that your partner may abandon you at the first sign of hardship because of what they’ve told you. It is the intention of such expressions to imply, “If you don’t do everything right, I will leave you.” 

This is the raw material from which abandonment anxiety is built. Over time, you will learn to tiptoe around your partner, afraid to do or say anything that might upset them.

Whenever a partner threatens they’ll leave, LET THEM. You’ll be much better off without that negative energy in your life.

7. “Why can’t you do anything right?”

7. "Why can't you do anything right?"
Husband and wife are arguing at home. Angry man is yelling at his wife.

People are usually correct when they say something isn’t working or fails to work for them. They are almost always wrong when they tell you exactly what they think is wrong and how to remedy it. When there is no empathy with the critique, it is meant to hurt you. It’s also a sign of immaturity in romantic relationships.

This is an instance of demeaning someone. It’s awful to intentionally hurt your partner’s self-esteem because we tend to pay attention to what we hear most often. 

Beware of things, and don’t begin to believe the toxic things your partner says about you.

8. “It is so difficult to love you.”

It is so difficult to love you
Upset wife sit on couch crying listening to furious husband yelling, unhappy couple have fight or disagreement at home, sad woman feel desperate and down with mad spouse scolding and lecturing

To make someone believe they are unlovable is a terrible act. If you hear statements like this on a regular basis, you may start to believe that you are unlovable or that your significant other is doing you a favour by dating you.

And that is obviously not the case; if anything is bothering someone enough, they always have the option of ending the relationship. But if they stay and make you feel terrible, you know there’s something wrong.

Your relationship, like all others, needs maintenance. But not everything is on your shoulders. A significant other should never make you feel inferior.

9. “It’s not a big deal; get over it.”

It's not a big deal; get over it
Argument an exchange of ignorance

These kinds of replies may be well-intentioned: You’re attempting to assist your spouse in keeping things in perspective, hoping they’ll understand that whatever they’re going through isn’t earth-shattering in the long term. 

However, such comments can be deeply discouraging to those experiencing emotional distress. Assuring them that they will “get over it” will simply make them feel ridiculous for bringing it up in the first place.

Alternatively, a healthy partner would say, “I understand your frustration. Together, we can make it through this.” 

10. “You’re overreacting.” 

You're overreacting
A woman quarrels with her husband, the claim of a lazy man who earns little money, a married couple quarrels sitting on the couch

Such remarks come out as gaslighting. Your feelings and worries are not taken seriously. You have to handle your complaint on your own because your partner doesn’t feel it’s important enough to look into. 

When you’re constantly manipulated in this way, you start to doubt your own judgement. The words a toxic partner says can have such a profound effect.

Gaslighting might be subtle, yet it still succeeds in making you doubt your own judgment. Negative thoughts about oneself can wreak havoc in a person’s head. Be firm the next time someone makes a remark like that.

11. “You do this every time!”   

You do this every time
A handsome young couple sit together on a couch, having a fierce argument.

This is the most harmful statement made by a toxic partner.  The receiver of a generalisation is left feeling diminished in intelligence or ability. 

The other person is being made to feel horrible about themselves through the use of these outrageous exaggerations. If someone is always pointing out how inefficient you are, it can really hurt your ego.

A person’s partner should be someone they can feel safe and secure with. You need to undertake some major soul-searching if it’s helping to chip away at your sense of value and confidence.

12. “You are just like your mom/dad.”

You are just like your mom or dad
Young furious woman fighting with her irate husband

Your companion is trying to bring out how you’re going to repeat the same mistakes your parents made. If you’re trying to be like your parents in some way, that doesn’t give them permission to use that behaviour as a weapon.

If your relationship with your parents is tense, this sentence will hit you harder. Unfortunately, these are the things toxic partners say. 

Ask yourself if you want to be with someone who can find your weaknesses and use them against you. You must establish limits or risk being completely cut off.


Walking on eggshells is a common metaphor for the emotional roller coaster that might be a toxic relationship. A feeling of suffocation may also arise. There could be a lack of trust, disagreements all the time, and a general sense of being used and mistreated or emotionally drained. 

A person’s health and happiness can suffer by being in a relationship that is poisonous.

You need to be alert and conscious of toxic patterns, especially if you have suspicions. Your instinct could be right. Protect yourself by calling them to order; if you can, walk away. It is all your choice.