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10 Signs you’re Being Used in a Relationship

By May 26, 2015October 19th, 20214 Comments

Waking up to the truth about who you surround yourself with can hurt. A lot.

(It isn’t for the fainthearted.) But when you constantly give and aren’t receiving what you need – it’s time to get honest. Yes it sucks, but truly? It sucks MORE if you don’t.

Because giving more than you receive means you are surrounded by users and that leads to HUGE resentment, EXHAUSTION and puts a huge FULL STOP on your own personal trajectory.

That’s why it’s so important for you to GET REAL about who you give your energy to – because that person?  Might be the very reason you’re really not going anywhere.

Come with me and let’s take a look around…

Firstly tell me out loud – what could the next 6 months look like if you were operating at your highest potential? With no drains on you?

Now I know you already know about the obvious drains to your highest potential – (like procrastinating.)

But what of the people close to you…is it possible that you’re giving more than you’re receiving?

And somebody who takes more than they give?  Unless they’re sick, or going through a tough patch, um – long term takers?

We call USERS.  Because they USE your time for their own purposes.

10 signs that you’re being used in a relationship, friendship or business relationship:

  1. They talk about themselves and ask you about how you are almost as an afterthought.
  2. If you do talk about yourself you become overly aware within moments that their awareness has wandered…so you tail off and the conversation peters out…
  3. The conversation always flows though when you talk about them.
  4. They are quick to point out how what you did hurt them.
  5. But get angry/manipulative /make you guilty/ when you tell them that they’ve hurt you.  So you don’t really go there because you know they’ll make it all about them anyway.
  6. You often feel wrong around them, so you find yourself often apologising, cap in hand and putting their needs first. It’s just easier.
  7. They don’t see your needs as important as theirs.
  8. Their words sound caring, but their actions are anything but. Don’t be fooled by their words. Ever.
  9. You’re so busy supporting them that you’ve stopped noticing how badly they’re treating you.
  10. You feel tired after you’re with them. So tired in fact that you’ve stopped your own trajectory.

So – what to do if you’re realising with slight horror that you might just have a user in your midst? Somebody that is using you to get to the top.  Using you for their own sexual, selfish, needs in a relationship? Using you to sort out their problems instead of going to a coach?  Using you to feel better?  To make a lot of money for themselves? To get what they want?

You DECIDE that YOU and your beautiful energy matter. That you will continue going no-where until you either transform this relationship or let it go.

That they are hurting your long term prospects more than you know because:

  • They are not as loyal to you as you are to them.  You always show up for them. And if you’re honest they don’t treat you with as much thought.
  • They don’t respect your time, your feelings, your professional standing, your boundaries, or when you say no. Soooo draining.
  • They don’t say thank you.
  • They make you wait.
  • They don’t invest in you or your future.
  • They don’t credit your ideas or input, and they don’t apologise.
  • They get angry if you stop giving them what they want:  Your energy, your body, your attention.
  • They are overly sensitive to how you treat them, but seem to miss all the details that are important to you.
  • They withhold money, payment, promises and promotions.
  • They genuinely do not care about your future.  If they did they would ask you how you are and genuinely support you to get to your future too.
  • You will remain disappointed and resentful and exhausted in this relationship for as long as it’s unfair.
  • They rise and get what they want, whereas if you’re honest you’re still standing still.

Here’s the sad fact about users:

They use you and your energy because they themselves are out of alignment: Instead of receiving energy from spirit and from themselves they’ve found it easier to get it from you. And you’re giving it.  So they attach to you and use you.

But users often feel empty so they have to ring you lots or find ways to be around you lots.

Here’s the thing – there are always going to be people who have forgotten that they ask too much of others and don’t give enough.  You can only be in relationship with them if you’ve forgotten too and give them your valuable energy instead of teaching them to find it within themselves.

So, here’s my mini guide to unhook you from a user:

  • Write down the cost of your energy going into a user rather than building your future.
  • Thank them for this healing mirror. They are a mirror to your apathy for yourself.  They couldn’t do this to you if you weren’t already doing this to yourself.
  • Start doing one thing a day towards YOUR future.
  • Stop taking their calls.  Gradually wean them off you by not answering as many as the weeks roll by.
  • If you do take a call simply begin by saying “hi, I’ve only 10 minutes to talk so I’ve just set the timer on my phone so I don’t miss my next appointment with myself”  Genuinly set the timer, let it go off so they hear it and say “gotta go” and PUT THE PHONE DOWN.
  • A true friend, lover, boss will totally support you in this.  A user will try to keep talking through it.

Remember who you really are.  

Remember why you are here on this planet.

Use your energy wisely.

I’d love to hear from you in the comments below – has this ever happened to you? How did you unhook?


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  • Suzy says:

    I can think of a few people I know who match some of these traits. The worst are the self centred ones. Every word they say is referenced back to themselves and their eyes glaze over if you start talking (unless it’s about them). There seem to be a lot of people like this. Sometimes I suspect they weren’t listened to as children and for them now, it can never be enough airspace. They gravitate to good listeners and ‘givers’ and it’s up to us to say ‘enough’ to these one sided friendships. I used to spend a lot of time with these types and felt guilty saying no to them. I’ve had enough now – guilt or no guilt – it’s two sided, or no sided friendships xx

    • marinaj says:

      Really love your clarity and self-love here – I LOVE your personal ethos that it’s a two sided or a no sided friendship for you – perfectly put! And you let them go to find another friend who is happy to give but not receive..until they are ready to learn this lesson too! Thank you for sharing Suzy, really love what you wrote

  • Richard says:

    I just read everything in your post and wow. It brings PERSPECTIVE in my own situation. A lot to think about. Thank-you for this hitting the nail on the head, right down the middle!

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