37 Toxic Family Quotes to Help You Close Doors and Open New Ones

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If you’re working on healing trauma and breaking a destructive cycle, these toxic family quotes will help you take a step in the right direction. Recognizing these harmful patterns, learning how others have broken free, and knowing that you’re not alone is extremely validating on your path to healing and growing. 

Toxic Family Quotes by Dr. Sherri Campbell

Dr. Sherri Campbell, psychologist and author of “But It’s Your Family” as well as other books about toxic families does the perfect job of expressing what it’s really like to live with a toxic family and the freedom that comes from breaking free in these quotes. 

But It’s Your Family” by Dr. Sherri Campbell

Quotes on Toxic Mothers

  1. “A child should never feel as if they need to earn a mother’s love.” –  Sherrie Campbell
  1. “A toxic mother talks but never listens, and she gives advice but never takes any.”  –  Sherrie Campbell
  1. “Toxic mothers are image-oriented rather than love-oriented.” –  Sherrie Campbell
  1. “We erroneously believe that if we try to be good enough, successful, or perfect, maybe our toxic family members will change their minds about us.” – Sherrie Campbell 
  1. “If toxic mothers are not getting the attention they crave from their children, they experience their children as inconveniences who stand in their way of doing what they want to do for themselves.” –  Sherrie Campbell
  1. “Like toddlers, toxic people base all their decisions on what they feel rather than on what is right.” – Sherrie Campbell

Quotes on Losing Ourselves With Toxic Families

  1. “The longer we ignore red flags, pretend they don’t exist, the more we disconnect from ourselves.” – Sherrie Campbell
  1. “If love is withheld, a child will look for it in a million other ways, sometimes throughout their lifetime unless they come to some sort of peace with their past.” – Sherrie Campbell
  1. “Recovery and treatment center around the life-long journey of undoing the severe damage that destroyed our self-worth.” – Sherrie Campbell
  1. “When we start life without knowing healthy love—including what it is, what it looks like, and what it feels like, we find it incredibly challenging to find healthy love later in life. After all, we don’t even know what we are looking for.” – Sherrie Campbell
  1. “Without this validation, children learn to give in to what others seem sure about.” – Sherrie Campbell
  1. “Dysfunctional families despise the truth-tellers and whistle-blowers. They are all about admiring the Emperor’s new clothes, and they turn on anyone who dares to mention the nakedness.” – Sherrie Campbell
  1. “We as their children don’t realize we’re being manipulated because we believe the lies our toxic family members tell us, convinced everything is our fault and that we are the ones who are broken and destroying our family members.” – Sherrie Campbell
  1. “Our toxic family members may tell us they love or hate us, but they only do so to provoke a strong reaction out of us.” – Sherrie Campbell
  1. “In order for parents to be present to and suffer with their children, their children need three simple things from them: time, love, and attention. Toxic parents provide none of these things, certainly not in any healthy ways.” – Sherrie Campbell

Quotes on Breaking the Toxic Cycle

  1. “I do not hate my toxic family members. I also do not need them.” – Sherrie Campbell
  1. “Toxic people do not think, operate, or play by the same rules we do, and our failure to recognize this sets us up by default for manipulation and unhappiness.” – Sherrie Campbell
  1. “It is important to understand that loving someone doesn’t always mean having a relationship with that person, just like forgiveness doesn’t always mean reconciliation.” – Sherrie Campbell
  1. “If it’s hurting you more than it’s healing you, love yourself enough to let it go.” – Sherrie Campbell
  1. “Toxic family members will see expressions of forgiveness as weaknesses to exploit. Don’t give in to their tactics this way. If you need to forgive them for your own healing, then do it, but keep it to yourself.” – Sherrie Campbell
  1. “Saying I love you takes away fear and provides our children with the confidence, and security they need to sustain them throughout life.” – Sherrie Campbell

More Toxic Family Quotes

Toxic Family Quotes On Playing the Victim

  1. “The only principle that governs their minds is the question ‘How do I look?’ “ – Haruki Murakami
  1. “Those who are crying are not always innocent.” – Emma Xu
  1. “Half of the people lie with their lips, the other half with their tears.” – Nassim Nicholas Taleb
  1. “We arrive and depart this life alone. Every moment in-between is a unique opportunity to experience as much love and belonging as we can possibly muster. Instead, we obsess over petty differences and turn our backs on those we are supposed to love.” – Anthon St. Maarten

Toxic Family Quotes On Walking Away

  1. “You are not part of a toxic family if you walk away.” – Michelle Meleen
  1. “If the family you choose before your birth no longer supports your path towards fulfilling your true destiny, it is never too late to find a new tribe.” – Anthon St. Maarten
  1. “A toxic family is even worse than a toxic relationship.” – Rohan Chouhan
  1. “Ending the toxic cycle within your own life isn’t easy. When you don’t come from a healthy family, you do your best to ensure a healthy one comes from you.” – Steve Marabolo

Toxic Family Quotes On Healing and Finding Yourself

  1. “In the process of letting go, you will lose many things from the past but you will find yourself.” – Deepak Chopra
  1. “You don’t let go of a bad relationship because you stop caring about them. You let go because you start caring about yourself.” – Charles Orlando
  1. “You don’t choose your family. They are God’s gift to you as you are to them.” – Desmond Tutu
  1. “How you choose to feel today should not be dependent on others.” – Anthon St. Maarten

Toxic Family Quotes On Control

  1. “The more dysfunctional, the more some family members seek to control the behaviour of others.” – David W. Earle
  1. “Family is supposed to be our safe haven. Very often, it’s the place we find the deepest heartache.” – Lyanla Vansant
  1. “Families always have these unspoken dramas and when at holidays, everyone is supposed to sit down and pretend that none of that is happening.” – Richard LaGravenese
  1. “When you are young, they assume you know nothing.” – Taylor Swift

Toxic Family Quotes – Final Thoughts

There’s no wrong or right way to heal. We hope that these quotes gave you some validation and some strength to take your next step forward.

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