Walking on Eggshells in a Relationship

Walking on Eggshells in a Relationship walking on eggshells in a relationship
Photo by Jason Dent on Unsplash

A relationship is supposed to be the first place where you are most comfortable, and you can even predict some of your partner’s moods because you know them. You spend most of your time in that relationship, so it should be a place where you feel free and open. But when the relationship is unhealthy, abusive, or explosive, you fear the relationship more than anything else. You start walking on eggshells to maintain peace in that household.

What does it mean when you walk on eggshells?

Handling an egg demands delicate care and attention to avoid any cracks, just as in an unhealthy relationship where you tread carefully around your partner to avoid upsetting them. The upset can manifest as lashing out at you, triggering their depression, or any action that elicits a negative reaction from your partner.

When you walk on eggshells, you monitor every step in the relationship, with your main goal being to maintain peace in the household, even at the expense of your own mental health and peace of mind. You’re always fearful and anxious about what they’re going to do next. It’s unpredictable; sometimes, they may react excessively, and other times, they may not react at all.

Everything you do becomes a potential trigger for them. You may also walk on eggshells because you’re afraid of facing conflict or have abandonment issues. You choose to be cautious because you believe that expressing yourself will jeopardize the relationship.

Signs You’re Walking on Eggshells

Identifying walking on eggshells can be challenging because, in the back of your mind, you may believe that you ‘love’ the relationship so much that you want to maintain peace at all costs. Below are some signs you’re walking on eggshells:

Your partner has a quick temper, and every small complaint results in an outburst.

You’re always on guard around your partner.

You’re constantly anxious and worried.

You prefer silence over addressing issues.

You’re afraid of making mistakes, even in basic chores like cooking.

You’re reluctant to make decisions and feel the need to consult for every small choice.

Your partner is hard to please, regardless of your efforts.

You’re deeply afraid of your partner.

You attempt to justify and rationalize their behaviors.

Can a Relationship Survive When You’re Walking on Eggshells?

The thing about walking on eggshells is that you might think you’re doing it to preserve the relationship, but the moment you begin walking on eggshells in a relationship, it stops being a genuine partnership. There are two dynamics at play here: you (the oppressed, which may even be self-oppression when your partner hasn’t done anything) and your partner (the oppressor).


When you can’t express yourself in a relationship, it ceases to be a true partnership. While you may want to maintain peace, deep down, you’re hurting, so it’s not real peace. Prolonged periods of walking on eggshells greatly affect your mental health, potentially leading to emotional numbness and damaged self-esteem. You might even become so accustomed to it that you no longer feel its effects or develop a pain body, making it a part of your identity. It’s like you normalize walking on eggshells as what a relationship is supposed to look like.

Additionally, when dealing with a narcissist, they thrive on drama. Even if you walk on eggshells to maintain peace, they’ll create situations to generate more drama. Narcissistic individuals do not seek healthy bonds; they want to appear in control of the situation. Therefore, you’ll always be negatively affected when you’re walking on eggshells.

How Do You Stop Walking on Eggshells?

In every situation, there is one person with the power to take action: you. There are only two options: either walk away from the relationship or work on fixing it. If you genuinely want to save the relationship, don’t avoid conflict; confront it and talk to your partner about it.


Sometimes, due to low self-esteem and conflict-avoidant behavior, you may choose to walk on eggshells even when some relationship issues can be resolved. If you wish to save the relationship, stand up and assert yourself. If you find that your partner is unresponsive or continues to make you walk on eggshells, then muster the inner strength to seek an exit from that relationship.

Neither option is easy, but you must prioritize your well-being. Take small actions and avoid rationalizing or making excuses in your head. You may feel powerless, but there is still a part of you capable of self-advocacy. Do not attempt to maintain peace in a relationship when you’re not at peace within yourself. Lastly, the mind naturally seeks self-preservation, so it can be challenging to think clearly, especially if you’ve been manipulated or had your reality distorted. Seek help to gain better clarity about your current situation.

Note from the Author

If you’re ready and you’d like my help with healing, finding peace in life and breaking free from these toxic patterns (in less than 2 months) , then you can book a FREE BREAKTHROUGH CALL with me HERE. Happy healing 💙💙. Feel free to share and comment! Use this information with caution, it comes from my own thoughts & bias, experiences and research😊.

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Edwin Bii
Edwin Bii

I'm Edwin Bii, a trained advanced conversational hypnotherapist (ACH) and Mind Shifting Coach from Kenya offering mental health support, and life coaching to help you crush your goalsand overcome your problems. Together, we'll navigate challenges, build self-awareness, and create a happier, healthier you. Let's unlock your potential.

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