We all make sacrifices for our friends, family and loved ones. We give up free time to help when they’re in need. We even make sacrifices for strangers like giving up your seat on a crowded bus so that someone can sit down. While some sacrifices are healthy there are some that commit toxic sacrifices or martyrdom. In their mind they feel like in the moment they are doing what is right, but later on they end up resenting or regretting said action. Here are the differences between the two.
This past weekend I messed up and hurt @–Rose-Bubbles–, so to help repair some of the damage I have sacrificed a great deal of my time to help comfort her and support her while she recovers from our bad weekend. This is an example of a healthy sacrifice. I don’t have to give up said time, I could text her everything I’m saying while on the phone with her throughout the day, but I’m giving up the time not because I messed up, but because she needs it and I care enough to give it. Another example would be turning down an offer to go to a sports game to stay at home and help your significant other get through a rough time they’re having. You are willingly choosing something that directly benefits the person you are sacrificing for in a positive way. Let’s look at the other side of the coin.
An example of this could be a husband saying something to his wife like, “I got rid of all my friends when I got with you so you’d be happy.” That’s a toxic sacrifice; it’s unnecessary and really doesn’t benefit anyone in any way positive or negative. I was in a relationship with a woman for almost two years before I met Rose. We all decided to become a poly triad. Rose, especially in the beginning of our relationship was very needy and took up a lot of my time, she didn’t do this on purpose, but the other woman viewed it as so. The woman I was with would often make toxic sacrifices like giving up time she wanted to spend with me so that Rose got more time with me. How is this any different than what I’m doing this week for Rose? The difference is she didn’t tell either of us she was doing this, she didn’t need to do it at all, her doing this didn’t benefit Rose or myself in any way. It along with a few other factors (some of which were my fault) in the relationship ultimately lead her to resenting Rose, my relationship with Rose and eventually our relationship entirely.
Sacrifices are made every day by many different people in many different ways. We sacrifice our time and energy to help those around us and like most things there are positive ways to do things and negative ways to do them. So the next time you go to make a sacrifice ask yourself, “Is this benefitting anyone involved in a positive way?” and if you can’t answer that question than chances are it’s a toxic sacrifice.
Disclaimer: I’m not an expert in anything period. The views expressed here are merely those from my own experiences. Thank you!
2 thoughts on “Healthy Sacrifice vs. Toxic Sacrifice”
I struggle with this a lot mainly because I attribute it to the fact that I’m very easy to please person so I let others’ happiness take precedence over my own.
I think a lot of us suffer from that. I used to say that I was happiest when everyone else was happy, but what happens when no one is happy?