Toxicity in the Household: A Teenager’s Perspective

Ideally, home should be a loving, happy, healthy environment.

Unfortunately, for some, home is a toxic, hostile environment.

Many teenagers grow up in a toxic household.

“My definition of a toxic household is a place that consists of constant verbal abuse, neglect, favoritism amongst the siblings, and lack of emotion or empathy,” Nashaun Davis, senior said.

On the other hand, a healthy family consists of these traits according to

Supportive family members should support your basic needs by:

  • setting boundaries
  • providing discipline and affection
  • taking care of your health and well-being
  • making sure you received education
  • ensuring you had food to eat and clean clothes to wear

Within a toxic family, the family members regularly display actions that hurt or otherwise negatively affect each other.

It’s an unhealthy environment.

Signs of a toxic home includes: abuse, feeling depressed or anxious around them, constantly blamed or criticized, they’re manipulative and controlling, they’re dismissive of your needs, etc.

Unfortunately, the word “toxic” is thrown around and misused quite often.

Some people think that they live in these environments, and they don’t really.

“The word is thrown around a lot, because everyone wants to fit in with the ‘trend’ of being mentally unstable or depressed. They want to be relatable,” Christopher Murray, junior, said.

The overuse of these words can be hurtful or come off as insensitive to those who actually deal with these things.

Most high school students don’t know what people have to deal with at home.

Parents tend to overstep boundaries because they feel that they have that right as your parents, but the kids don’t see it this way.

Young adults need their personal space and alone time; crossing boundaries only builds resentment towards the parent.

No child wants to feel hatred towards their parents. They just wanted to love and be loved correctly.

A child can push for or desire a relationship with the parent, but if the parent acts careless about the relationship, then the child may eventually feel the need for one.

The negative relationship a child has with his or her parents can damage their perspective on life, relationships, and friendships.

The lack of healthy relationships can lead to detrimental issues such as “daddy” or “mommy” issues, trust issues, insecurities, anxiety, drug usage, and more.

“The child will long for the things they didn’t receive as a child. It can trail into their adulthood as well. They will overlook the things that they need and will be attracted to the things that they want. They will constantly try to fill that void,” Murray said.

They may try to cope with these issues by sleeping excessively, going out with friends, and listening to music.

There are five helpful strategies to help you overcome the malignant atmosphere.

Students need to give yourself time to mourn, separation and individuation, set boundaries and limits, work on your self-esteem, and get what you need from others.