A parasite latches on to a host and exploits it for valuable resources necessary for its survival. If you suspect that you are in a parasitic relationship, then you must be worried that the person you are dating, much like a parasite, is sucking you dry, robbing you of emotional strength, money, time, and everything else that is valuable to you.
If you want to know if you are in a parasitic relationship, then you have to see if the following signs apply to you. And if you are, then you better get out as soon as possible. Ask yourself if your partner has to do everything with you. It’s defi nitely possible to have almost everything in common, but it’s still healthy to do some things separately and have some solitude.
• If every single time you step out of the house, even if it’s just to pick up a prescription from the pharmacy or to get coff ee, you hear your partner say, ’I’ll come, too!’ then he or she may be a parasite. • If you suddenly notice that your partner is always doing the things you used to love doing alone, from morning yoga to taking a walk after dinner, then he or she may be a parasite.
• If your partner also cannot do anything by him or herself, whether it’s to have a coff ee date with a new acquaintance or to get an oil change, and is always asking you to come along, then you may be in a parasitic relationship. Be cautious about paying for everything. Sure, everyone gets strapped for cash from time to time, but if you fi nd that you are always paying for dinner, movies, trips, and other big things like the person’s education, rent and other bills, then it’s worth examining if this is an arrangement you are comfortable with, and how your partner would respond if you, for example, you lost your income.
• Th e person might even say, ’I’d love to go out to dinner, but you know I’m so broke this month.’ Th is is a way of tricking you into paying while making you think it’s your idea.
• Even if you have tons of money to spare, this should still be a warning sign. If the person you are dating is so willing to take advantage of your money, he or she will also be just as willing to take advantage of your emotions. Are you doing excessive favors for your partner? In a healthy relationship, partners take turns doing favors for each other whenever one person needs a little help. In a parasitic relationship, one partner is always doing favours for the other and getting nothing in return. If you fi nd that you are giving your partner rides everywhere, cooking all the meals or picking them up, running errands for him, and basically taking care of all the little things he or she is too lazy to do, then you may be infected by a parasite.
• Th ough it may hurt, write two lists: one, a list of all the favours you have done for your partner, and two, a list of all the favours he or she has done for you. Th ey don’t match up, do they? See if your partner is completely asocial. This is another major problem. If any time you and your partner are out in public together, he or she refuses to talk to other people, demands your attention constantly, and generally shows no regard for others, then you need to rethink your priorities. It’s one thing if your partner is really shy, but another if he or she is rude to others or just flat-out acts like they don’t exist.
Th is is a sign that the person doesn’t see a life outside of you. See if your partner is upset any time you do your own thing. In any healthy relationship, both partners should feel comfortable doing their own thing. Th is can mean hanging out with your own friends, getting some quality family time, or just reading, running, or pursuing your own hobbies on your own time. If your partner truly loves and cares about you, then he or she should be happy when you pursue your own interests and grow as a person on your own. • If your partner is hurt, angry, jealous, or distant whenever you leave the house without him or her, even if you’re just grabbing coff ee with your cousin Sally, then he or she resents your individuality. How to know if you ‘re in parasitic relationship
• I n a h e a l t h y relationship, both partners get to talk about their problems and concerns equally. • If you feel like your partner is doing at least 80% of the talking and you’re not particularly shy, then you have a problem. • If any time you mention yourself, your partner tries to make your problems seem smaller by saying that he or she has it so much worse, then you have a problem. You never get to share your feelings. If you’re afraid to share your feelings because you think your partner will get angry and misunderstand you, or if you don’t share your thoughts and feelings because you know your partner won’t really listen, then you have a problem.
You should feel just as comfortable about sharing your thoughts, fears, and hopes as your partner does.
• B o t h p e o p l e should be able to share in a relationship, and if every time you try to talk about yourself, your partner says he or she is busy or tired, interrupts you and tries to make it all about him or herself, or just gets a glazed look that makes it clear he or she isn’t listening, then you are getting used. If there is no such thing as a compromise in your relationship. You are in a parasitic relationship if you feel like, no matter what, your partner always ends up getting exactly what he or she wants.
You may fi nd yourself giving in • If your partner checks in on you and asks when you’ll be home every five minutes when you’re out, then he or she may be a parasite. See if other people have voiced concern about your relationship. When people voice concern about your relationship, it’s natural to get defensive and to feel even more determined to prove everyone wrong by trying as hard as you can to make things work. But if you fi nd that your friends, family members, and pretty much everyone in your orbit is worried that your signifi cant other is taking advantage of you, then there may be some truth to what they’re saying. • W h e n yo u t e l l these people they are wrong, you end up driving them away. Th en your partner gets exactly what he or she wants even more of your time and attention.
Notice if your partner is always talking about his or her problems. If you can’t even remember the last time you shared your deepest fears or doubts with your partner, then you’re in hot water. If you feel like your significant other is always the one who is talking, upset, getting comfort, and seeking and getting your love and attention, then you have a problem. It’s okay if your partner is having a bad month, but if you feel like there is always something wrong in his or her life, then you may be getting used for emotional support. just because it’s easier than fi ghting, because your partner will be mad if he or she doesn’t get what he or she is after, or simply because you’ve convinced yourself that he or she must want it more. In a healthy relationship, partners work together to fi nd a decision that can make them both happy, and take turns ’giving in’ to each other.
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What are 5 examples of parasitism relationships?
5 Common Parasitic Animal Relationships
- Ticks. via flickr/mislav-m. Ticks are arthropod parasites that live on the skin of their animal hosts.
- Fleas. via petarmor.com. Another common parasitic animal relationship is between the flea and an array of warm-blooded creatures.
- Leeches. via vernalpool.org.
- Lice. via flickr/Gilles San Martin.
- Helminths. via stanford.edu.
Why do parasites not want to kill their hosts immediately?
Usually, although parasites harm their hosts, it is in the parasite’s best interest not to kill the host, because it relies on the host’s body and body functions, such as digestion or blood circulation, to live. Some parasitic animals attack plants.
Do all parasites kill their hosts?
In contrast to typical predators, parasites do not always kill their hosts, and if they do, it may take a considerable amount of time, during which the parasite may be transmitted to other hosts, and the host remains in the community competing with other organisms for space, food, and mating partners.
Is Mistletoe A parasite?
Mistletoe is a parasite – it steals water and nutrients from trees. Most mistletoe seeds are spread by birds, which eat the berries and defecate on tree branches. If attached to a new host tree, the parasitic seed releases a compound called “viscin”, which dries to form a stiff biological cement.
How do parasites affect their hosts?
Parasites May Influence Predation on Their Hosts The potential effect that parasites have on host–predator interactions is also important. Parasites may lower the ability of their hosts to escape predators; infected hosts may swim and react more slowly than healthy hosts, for example.
How do you know if you have parasite?
- abdominal pain.
- diarrhea, nausea, or vomiting.
- unexplained weight loss.
- abdominal pain or tenderness.
How do you get parasites out of your brain?
The infection is treated with albendazole or praziquantel (drugs used to treat parasitic worm infections, called antihelminthic drugs). Corticosteroids are given to reduce the inflammation that occurs as the larvae die.
What can I drink to kill parasites?
Eat more raw garlic, pumpkin seeds, pomegranates, beets, and carrots, all of which have been used traditionally to kill parasites. In one study, researchers found that a mixture of honey and papaya seeds cleared stools of parasites in 23 out of 30 subjects. Drink a lot of water to help flush out your system.
How do you tell if you have parasites in your brain?
Seizures and headaches are the most common symptoms. However, confusion, lack of attention to people and surroundings, difficulty with balance, excess fluid around the brain (called hydrocephalus) may also occur.
Can Worms Eat your brain?
The juvenile form of the worm — known as larvae — are found in contaminated water as well as the flesh of frogs and snakes. Consumption of raw flesh from these animals or drinking contaminated water can lead to infection, from which the larvae can migrate to many parts of the body, including the brain.
Can worms live in your hair?
There are several parasites in the environment and when they get into a person’s body, his/her health can be affected. Some parasites enter the body by way of contaminated food or water and some live on the skin and the hair. Examples of parasites include: stomach and gut worms (threadworm, hookworm)
What worms live in your hair?
Horsehair worms, part of the taxonomic phylum Nematomorpha, are parasitic worms that resemble long thin strands of hair (hence their nickname).
Can coconut oil kill pinworms?
Coconut oil Coconut is said to have antibacterial and antiviral properties that may help clear a pinworm infection. This treatment requires a two-step approach. Swallow a teaspoon of pure coconut oil each morning. Before you go to bed, rub a small amount of coconut oil into the affected area.
Can a human get a horsehair worm?
Horsehair worms are harmless to vertebrates, because they can’t parasitize people, livestock, pets, or birds. They also don’t infect plants. If humans ingest the worms, they may encounter some mild discomfort of the intestinal tract, but infection never occurs.
What are long skinny worms?
Horsehair or gordian worms are long, slender worms related to nematodes. When they are immature, they are parasites of insects, arthropods and other invertebrate animals. They are harmless to people in all stages of their lives. They are considered beneficial as they control other insects.
How are parasitic worms spread to humans?
the parasite might be spread to other people through exposure to an infected person’s blood (for example, by blood transfusion or by sharing needles or syringes contaminated with blood).
Where can I find horsehair worms?
They are found in water or wet areas, such as in or alongside streams or puddles but they can occur in cisterns, livestock watering troughs or most open outdoor container with water. These harmless, curious creatures writhe slowly, contorting their hair-like bodies into intricate knots.
What are the worm things in my crickets?
Horsehair worms are parasites of certain insects, especially crickets and grasshoppers. Horsehair worms which emerge from parasitized insects were seen swimming in water troughs and supposed to have spontaneously transformed from the long horse hairs; hence the term “horsehair worm”.
Do all praying mantis have worms?
Chordodes formosanus is a horsehair worm that has the praying mantis as its definitive host. Horsehair worms are obligate parasites that pass through different hosts at various stages….
Can Nematomorpha infect humans?
Phylum Nematomorpha Some species are parasitic on humans, but invertebrates and other vertebrates serve as hosts. The free-living adults are several centimeters to 1 m long and about 3 mm wide.
How do you get worms in your face?
According to the CDC, these types of parasites are carried by mosquitoes. When an infected mosquito bites a mammal, most often a dog or coyote, it introduces larvae onto the host’s skin. The larvae grow and produce microscopic offspring.
A parasitic relationship is one in which one organism, the parasite, lives off of another organism, the host, harming it and possibly causing death. The parasite lives on or in the body of the host.
A few examples of parasites are tapeworms, fleas, and barnacles. Tapeworms are segmented flatworms that attach themselves to the insides of the intestines of animals such as cows, pigs, and humans. They get food by eating the host’s partly digested food, depriving the host of nutrients. Fleas harm their hosts, such as dogs, by biting their skin, sucking their blood, and causing them to itch. The fleas, in turn, get food and a warm home. Barnacles, which live on the bodies of whales, do not seriously harm their hosts, but they do itch and are annoying.
Usually, although parasites harm their hosts, it is in the parasite’s best interest not to kill the host, because it relies on the host’s body and body functions, such as digestion or blood circulation, to live.
Some parasitic animals attack plants. Aphids are insects that eat the sap from the plants on which they live. Parasitic plants and fungi can attack animals. A fungus causes lumpy jaw, a disease that injures the jaws of cattle and hogs. There are also parasitic plants and fungi that attack other plants and fungi. A parasitic fungus causes wheat rust and the downy mildew fungus attacks fruit and vegetables. Some scientists say that one-celled bacteria and viruses that live in animals and harm them, such as those that cause the common cold, are parasites as well. However, they are still considered different from other parasites. Many types of parasites carry and transmit disease. Lyme disease is trasmitted by deer ticks.
A parasite and its host evolve together. The parasite adapts to its environment by living in and using the host in ways that harm it. Hosts also develop ways of getting rid of or protecting themselves from parasites. For example, they can scratch away ticks. Some hosts also build a symbiotic relationship with another organism that helps to get rid of the parasite. Ladybugs live on plants, eating the aphids and benefiting by getting food, while the plant benefits by being rid of the aphids.
In a healthy relationship, both partners depend on each other equally for love, emotional support and encouragement.
A codependent relationship, by contrast, is one-sided. It’s a dysfunctional dynamic in which one partner disproportionately gives and sacrifices their own wants and needs to please and clean up the mess of the other partner, who often behaves recklessly and rarely offers support in return.
In a Psychology Today blog post, Shawn M. Burn, a psychology professor at California Polytechnic State University at San Luis Obispo, explains that in a codependent relationship, “much of the love and intimacy in the relationship is experienced in the context of one person’s distress and the other’s rescuing or enabling.”
“The helper shows love primarily through the provision of assistance and the other feels loved primarily when they receive assistance,” she added. “The intense shared experiences of the other’s struggles and disasters and the helper’s rescues deepen the emotional connection and feelings of intimacy.”
Think you might be caught in a codependent relationship yourself? We asked Burn and other codependency experts to share some of the telltale signs.
1. You’re quick to say “yes” to your partner without pausing to consider how you feel.
“You have a right to take care of yourself in relationships by setting boundaries— finding the inner strength to say ‘no’ or ‘I’m not sure’ if something doesn’t resonate for you or if you need more time to consider your partner’s request.”
2. You frequently make excuses or compensate for your partner’s bad behavior.
“For instance, ignoring someone’s drinking or making excuses for them to your friends is likely a sign that you aren’t seeing things clearly in your relationship because boundaries have become blurred.”
― Samantha Rodman, psychologist and dating coach
3. Your partner’s happiness becomes your top priority.
“Such a relationship is truly toxic to the individual’s development, and ultimately their happiness. Still, blind to the repercussions of such misplaced devotion, the codependent individual can’t help but continue to try to please the person they’re enabling because that person’s acceptance of them has become their highest, sometimes their sole, priority.”
4. You think you’re helping your partner by bailing them out for the umpteenth time. But at this point, you’re just enabling them.
“You demonstrate your love by enabling and rescuing to help solve your partner’s self-manufactured problems. This means that your loving, supportive acts serve to foster your partner’s unhealthy dependence, poor mental or physical health, irresponsibility, immaturity, addiction or criminality.”
5. You lose your own sense of identity, interests and desires.
“Healthy love allows for differentiation. Each person can have their individual sense of self and yet remain emotionally connected when there is disagreement or conflict. Differences in the relationship are not taken personally. Each person has their own friends, own interests, each is supportive of the other, and their happiness is not dependent on the relationship. There is an individual sense of self and and sense of ‘togetherness.’
Codependent love exists when each partner ends up giving up a part of who they are in order to keep the relationship. The dynamic in the relationship is one of manipulation, control, enmeshment and giving up aspects of yourself.”
Although narcissists would never admit it, they are by nature dependent on other people for their emotional survival. If they were loners, many lives would be spared immeasurable misery. But narcissists actively, persistently pursue others to obtain their “narcissistic supply,” or sense of worth in life. The narcissist as human parasite usually takes a heavy emotional and physiological toll on her “suppliers.”
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention defines a parasite as follows:
“A parasite is an organism that lives on or in a host and gets its food from or at the expense of its host. Parasites can cause disease in humans.”
Parasitism isn’t just about “feeding,” however. Scientists have uncovered many parasite-host relationships in which the parasite actually alters the brain and behavior of its host to make it assist in fulfilling vital parts of the parasite’s life cycle. A certain type of tiny wasp, for example, injects its egg along with chemicals into a ladybug. The egg hatches and consumes the nutrients that the ladybug ingests when it eats, essentially devouring the ladybug from the inside out. When the wasp larva is big enough, it squirms out of the ladybug and wraps itself in a cocoon beneath it. Immobilized and half dead, the ladybug is still programmed in essence to protect the larva by thrashing its body around if threatening insects approach. Once the larva-turned-wasp hatches from its cocoon and flies away, the ladybug typically dies.
The Narcissist as Human Parasite
Understanding narcissism through the lens of parasitism explains their need to “feed” on others as a means of supply. The individual with narcissistic personality disorder (NPD) suffers from a destabilized identity and sense of inferiority based in the formative years of childhood. He attempts to adapt by projecting a “superior” persona. But he is always seeking the validation he did not receive at crucial developmental stages as a young and relatively unformed person. His incomplete sense of being compels him to seek self-worth elsewhere, either by aligning himself with high-status people and/or by devaluing and dissociating from those who either threaten his false persona or who somehow “lower” his status.
Like most parasites, narcissists rarely kill their hosts (although malignant ones may subject them to extreme violence). But like the mind-altering variety of parasite, the narcissist works to control the “brains” of her suppliers through a wide range of manipulations, from bullying to projecting, denying to gaslighting, guilt-tripping to silent-treatment. The narcissist continuously orchestrates the “reality” around her by enlisting others in supporting her delusions of grandeur and punishing and/or rejecting them if they do not comply. To the narcissist, her spouse questioning an opinion she has declared as patented truth or her child not making the soccer team are potential humiliations to which she may react with scorn or rage. In the parasitic narcissist’s eyes, both situations weaken the desirability of her “hosts,” or sources of supply, and thereby threaten her sense of well-being.
Are You a Narcissist’s Host?
Narcissists have an instinct for finding and attaching themselves to potential hosts. Such people in some way offer them status while also enabling their harshly self-serving world-view and behavior.
A host may confer status to the narcissist in many ways, including by being charming, good looking, wealthy, famous, well-respected, or professionally accomplished. The host also enables the narcissist by directly or indirectly being complicit in the narcissist’s distorted reality and abuse of others to protect his false face. In this sense the enabling host is like the mind-altered ladybug, serving the needs of the narcissist, often at its own expense.
Are you functioning as a kind of host for a narcissist? Here are some ways to tell if you’re in a relationship with one:
- They demand inordinate attention and admiration.
- They react with retaliatory rage or sulking punishment if you disagree or argue with them.
- They don’t apologize or take responsibility for their behavior, no matter how inappropriate or hurtful.
- They lack interest in or compassion for your feelings and needs and project their behavior onto you.
- They display an inflated sense of entitlement and cause a scene or react bitterly if they feel snubbed or victimized.
- You feel like you’re constantly vulnerable to attack and/or criticism.
- You find yourself regularly placating and avoiding confrontation.
- You feel it is unsafe to freely express your feelings or opinions around them.
- You are emotionally and physically hypervigilant to potential conflict.
- You feel isolated by the relationship.
NOTE: This article does not intend to demonize narcissists. They are victims in pain, which they are constantly trying to mitigate. However, they deliver a sh*t storm of hurt to those around them, and their lack of empathy and unwillingness to take responsibility for their actions often make them devastatingly abusive.
Julie L. Hall’s articles on narcissism regularly appear in her popular blog The Narcissist Family Files, as well as The Huffington Post and PsychCentral. She is the author of a forthcoming memoir about life, and a few near deaths, in a narcissistic family (read excerpts).
There are seasons in our life when it’s simply time for some relationships to come to an end. This can be hard because we don’t hold relationships lightly. And whether the relationship is platonic or romantic, we don’t often begin them thinking about how they might end. Instead, we invest a lot of our time, energy, and love into them. However, God works in our lives in seasons! And just like he uses a job, school, or ministry experience to grow and mature us, he also uses relationships. The key is to recognize which relationships are long term and which are seasonal.
Letting go of a relationship doesn’t necessarily mean that an individual is toxic to your life. Though that may very well be the case, there may also be times where it’s simply time for you to cut ties with a person because their season in your life has ended. Either way, it’s important to notice the signs that it’s time to let go of a relationship so that we don’t drag them on. Here are 10 things that can be markers that it’s time for you and another to go your separate ways.
Image Credit: Thinkstock.com
Distance can happen physically, or it can be a mentally separation where you and other person just don’t seem to be able to get on the same page the way you used to at the beginning of the relationship. If there has been some significant life changes in you or the other person’s life, it’s wise to pray before you end the relationship. People have families, jobs, and other priorities that can pull them away from your relationship for a period of time. The key question to think about here is if there is mutual effort is being made to reconnect. If not, this may be a sign that it’s time to let go of the relationship.
Science Picture Co/Subjects / Getty Images
- B.A., Biology, Emory University
- A.S., Nursing, Chattahoochee Technical College
Bacteria are all around us and most people only consider these prokaryotic organisms to be disease-causing parasites. While it is true that some bacteria are responsible for a large number of human diseases, others play a vital role in necessary human functions such as digestion.
Bacteria also make it possible for certain elements such as carbon, nitrogen, and oxygen to be returned to the atmosphere. These bacteria ensure that the cycle of chemical exchange between organisms and their environment is continuous. Life as we know it would not exist without bacteria to decompose waste and dead organisms, thus playing a key role in the flow of energy in environmental food chains.
Are Bacteria Friend or Foe?
The decision as to whether bacteria are friend or foe becomes more difficult when both the positive and negative aspects of the relationship between humans and bacteria are considered. There are three types of symbiotic relationships in which humans and bacteria coexist. The types of symbiosis are termed commensalism, mutualism, and parasitism.
Commensalism is a relationship that is beneficial to the bacteria but does not help or harm the host. Most commensal bacteria reside on epithelial surfaces that come in contact with the external environment. They are commonly found on the skin, as well as in the respiratory tract and the gastrointestinal tract. Commensal bacteria acquire nutrients and a place to live and grow from their host. In some instances, commensal bacteria may become pathogenic and cause disease, or they may provide a benefit for the host.
In a mutualistic relationship, both the bacteria and the host benefit. For example, there are several kinds of bacteria that live on the skin and inside the mouth, nose, throat, and intestines of humans and animals. These bacteria receive a place to live and feed while keeping other harmful microbes from taking up residence. Bacteria in the digestive system assist in nutrient metabolism, vitamin production, and waste processing. They also aid in the host’s immune system response to pathogenic bacteria. Most of the bacteria that reside within humans are either mutual or commensal.
A parasitic relationship is one in which the bacteria benefit while the host is harmed. Pathogenic parasites, which cause disease, do so by resisting the host’s defenses and growing at the expense of the host. These bacteria produce poisonous substances called endotoxins and exotoxins, which are responsible for the symptoms that occur with an illness. Disease-causing bacteria are responsible for a number of diseases including meningitis, pneumonia, tuberculosis, and several types of food-borne diseases.
Bacteria: Helpful or Harmful?
When all of the facts are considered, bacteria are more helpful than harmful. Humans have exploited bacteria for a wide variety of uses. Such uses include making cheese and butter, decomposing waste in sewage plants, and developing antibiotics. Scientists are even exploring ways for storing data on bacteria. Bacteria are extremely resilient and some are capable of living in the most extreme environments. Bacteria have demonstrated that they are able to survive without us, but we could not live without them.
This is the type of person who refuses to get a decent job or to support him/herself and who believes that you (and the world) owe them something. This kind of person tends to have NPD (narcissistic personality disorder) or at least to be considered a toxic narcissist. They have a tendency to be attracted to empaths, and like all narcissists, will be highly prone to gaslighting and manipulation of their closest sources of narcissistic supply.
In this video, I’ll expand on the definition of a parasitic narcissist and explain exactly what you can expect from one. Plus, I’ll offer tips on how you might deal with a parasite narcissist.
You might also be interested in learning about narcissistic financial abuse. Financial Abuse is a sneaky, pervasive tactic used by a narcissist in which they use money to control and or manipulate you. This can be done by restricting you from accessing family money or by forcing you to provide all of the money, and may involve blatant lying about, theft of and/or hiding of family money, among other forms of manipulation and control.
Additional (free) resources on financial abuse
Angela Atkinson is a certified trauma counselor and the author of more than 20 books on narcissism, narcissistic abuse recovery, and related topics. A recognized expert on narcissism and narcissistic personality disorder who has studied and written extensively on narcissistic personality disorder and narcissistic abuse in toxic relationships since 2006, she has a popular narcissistic abuse recovery YouTube channel. Atkinson was inspired to begin her work as a result of having survived toxic relationships of her own.
Atkinson offers trauma-informed narcissistic abuse recovery coaching and has certifications in trauma counseling, life coaching, level 2 therapeutic model, CBT coaching, integrative wellness coaching, and NLP. She is a certified trauma support coach and certified family trauma professional. She also has a professional PTSD counseling certification. Her mission is to help those who have experienced the emotional and mental devastation that comes with narcissistic abuse in these incredibly toxic relationships to (re)discover their true selves, stop the gaslighting and manipulation, and move forward into their genuine desires – into a life that is exactly what they choose for themselves.