Toxic Type # 3: “The Guilt-Inducer”

guilt trip

08 Nov Toxic Type # 3: “The Guilt-Inducer”

It is always important to remember that toxic relationships may NOT always be with just your intimate partner.  Toxic relationships can definitely occur between you and your best friends, parents and other close family and friends.  Usually this sense of control within these other relationships can be seen through one party creating, or inducing guilt within the other party, or “victim.”

This Guilt Inducer can control you by encouraging you to feel guilty any time you do or say something that they do not like.  They may even get others to convey their sense of disappointment or hurt to you.  For example, your sister may let you know  how upset and disappointed your mom was for not cleaning up the house, or coming to  dinner.  Your mother has expressed her concerns to your sister, indirectly (or maybe directly, depending on who you are dealing with) causing your sister to deliver the message, hence creating guilt within yourself.

Guilt inducers can control you by both inducing guilt as well as removing guilt.  By removing guilt whenever you do something that he or she wants you to do, you are giving control to the other person.  If you are a guilt-prone individual, like myself, anyone or anything that removes guilt becomes very desirable and damn near addictive.  You are constantly carrying this feeling of guilt when you are around these people, that of course, when things are done to remove that guilt, you begin to feel better with yourself.  You then begin this back and forth cycle within this relationship.  One person induces guilt, while you work tooth and nail to do what that person wants in order to remove this guilty feeling.

This idea of creating guilt is commonly found between parent and child relationships.  Toxic parents use this form of control over their children, and this continues on into the adult child’s life.

Guilt inducing is designed to control your behaviour.  By controlling your behaviour, your toxic partner, parent or friend will always get what they want.




Source:  Cory, Thomas L., PH.D. “Toxic Relationships.” Chattanooga HealthScope Magazine, n.d. Web. 10 Oct. 2012. <>.

  • Lazy
    Posted at 17:39h, 28 February Reply

    I know this relationship all too well not just within my household but within another’s household very close to mine. Sometimes you don’t even realize you’re taking this trip until the landmarks start looking familiar to you.

    • brokenheals
      Posted at 12:44h, 29 August Reply

      I’m sorry I took so long to see this comment!
      I always feel like the “guilt-inducer” is almost like the master manipulator also. They have you so convinced that you are always doing wrong, when in fact you have done nothing wrong, simply for their own benefit.
      It is hard to break away from this toxic type, especially when being with them for so long because even the process or thought of leaving makes you then feel guilty in the end. This takes a lot of courage and confidence to break away from and recognize that you are no way in fault!

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