The Astrology of Toxic Relationships

We have all heard the term “toxic relationship”, and you may have experienced one, yourself! I know I have.

What aspects indicate a toxic relationship?

What is a toxic relationship?

According to Very Well Mind, “A toxic relationship is one that makes you feel unsupported, misunderstood, demeaned, or attacked. A relationship is toxic when your well-being is threatened in some way—emotionally, psychologically, and even physically.”

Some indications of being in a toxic relationship are:

  • Feeling undervalued and unappreciated
  • Feeling you need to walk on eggshells around your partner
  • The relationship brings out the worst side of you
Who gets into toxic relationships?

According to Very Well Mind, people who have mental health problems or past traumas may be susceptible to getting caught in a toxic relationship.  Low self-esteem and self-worth can lead people into toxic relationships because they do not feel they can do any better.

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What natal aspects indicate someone might find themselves in a toxic relationship?
Hard Venus-Saturn Aspects

Hard aspects between Venus (or the ruler of the 7th house) and Saturn can indicate someone who may find themselves in toxic relationships. People with harsh Venus-Saturn aspects often have issues regarding low self-worth and self-esteem. There may be a feeling of being unworthy of love, or being unlovable.  There may be a lot of pessimism about love, often due to an early heartbreak they have never gotten over.

Because of their low self-esteem, Venus-Saturn people may feel they are unworthy of true love, and that unconditional love does not exist. As a result, they may marry out of duty or responsibility. They might end up with partners who do not treat them well or value them at all, which is a reflection of how the Venus-Saturn native feels about themselves.

Hard Venus-Neptune Aspects 

Hard aspects between Venus (or the ruler of the 7th house) and Neptune in a natal chart can indicate someone who ends up with toxic partners. Neptune is the planet of delusion and illusions, so it can make it hard for people with this aspect to see their romantic partners for who they really are.

Venus-Neptune people tend to be very forgiving and see their relationships through rose-coloured glasses. They create fantasies or idealizations of their partners in their mind, and may tend to ignore their partners flaws to keep their dreams alive.

If the Venus-Neptune native finds themselves in a toxic relationship, it may be difficult for them to fully let go of their partner, for it would ruin the fantasy they’ve built up in their minds. This is why Venus-Neptune natives tend to stay in bad relationships for a long time.

Hard Venus-Pluto Aspects

People who have hard aspects between Venus and Pluto in their natal charts are no strangers to drama. This aspect indicates their relationships are full of jealousy, obsession, drama, and power struggles. People will this aspect attract intense and consuming relationships which quickly fall into a ‘can’t live with you, can’t live without you’ theme to them.

Synastry of Toxic Relationships
Pluto and Toxic Relationships

The first thing some astrologers think of when they hear “toxic relationship’ is Pluto! Pluto is the lord of the underworld, and rules transformation, intimacy, and power. On the downside, it can also bring jealousy, obsession, and power struggles into a relationship.

Venus-Pluto aspects (and 7th house ruler-Pluto aspects) in Synastry can indicate toxicity. If one person’s Pluto makes hard aspects to another person’s planets, the Pluto person will likely have the upper hand in the relationship.

The planet person, over time, may not appreciate the Pluto person’s constant need to control them and the relationship, and may attempt the get the power back by resorting to game playing. Things could quickly turn ugly between the couple, for each is trying to dominate and control the other.

I find that Pluto also brings a lot of paranoia into a relationship due to a strong fear of losing each other. Accusations of disloyalty (whether true or not) could feature strongly between this couple. At worst, strong Pluto contacts can indicate abuse (mental, physical, and sexual).

In my experience with Venus conjunct Pluto and Venus square Pluto in synastry, these aspects are very toxic. I always felt my partner was trying to control me, and it was incredibly hard for us to break up. Although I was unhappy in the relationship, I was obsessed with him and could not imagine being apart from him. I’m glad I finally came to my senses and broke up with him, but it was probably my hardest breakup to date.

Neptune and Toxic Relationships 

As mentioned before, harsh Neptune aspects are sweet and dreamy, but can also be confusing, deceptive and disorienting.

Hard Neptune in a synastry chart indicates a relationship that is not entirely realistic. This, in itself, does not indicate toxicity, but it can depending on how the couple treats each other.

Unlike Venus-Pluto, Venus-Neptune aspects do not indicate controlling, jealous behaviour between a couple. Instead, it can indicate deception and dishonesty. At least one of the partners does not see (or does not WANT to see) the relationship for what it really is.

In strong Neptune relationships, it is common that the Neptune person continually lies to and deceives the planet person. The planet person sees the relationship through rose-colored glasses and does not want to accept the Neptune person’s flaws, for that would ruin the perfect image in their head of their partner and the relationship. As a result, the Neptune person may choose to forgive the Neptune person.

Relationships like these can become very toxic, mostly due to how much the Neptune person disrespects the planet person, and for how much disrespect the planet person puts up with. For example, Khloe Kardashian and Tristan Thompson’s relationship was full of Neptune (Tristan is very Neptunian, by the way). Khloe continually forgave him and gave him too many chances until she could no longer take the disrespect.

Click here to read The Synastry of Physical Attraction 

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