Karmic Relationships: Signs & How to Get Out

Published on: 27 Jan 2023
Clinically Reviewed by Reshawna Chapple, PhD, LCSW
Young couple in Karmic Relationship

Does your relationship feel like a series of dramatic highs and lows? Do you have a strong connection to your partner but feel like you keep having the same fights over and over again?

Karmic relationships are intense connections characterized by passion and drama. People drawn to these intense relationships can feel an instant connection to their partner, but they find it challenging to maintain a healthy or stable relationship with them. In a sense, karmic relationships are related to karma because they are seen as relationships that are necessary for our own personal growth.

These relationships can be addictive, and though they might feel good at times, they can also be toxic. Learning to recognize karmic relationship signs will help you break the drama cycle and move on so you can establish healthy, fulfilling partnerships with people in your life. 

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Are Karmic Relationships Soulmates?

When you meet a karmic partner for the first time, it can feel like you’ve found your soulmate. The connection is often described as feeling “magnetic.” You might think you’re “meant to be,” or you must have known each other in a past life. 

Unfortunately, while these relationships seem perfect initially, the karmic bond quickly becomes unhealthy. Karmic relationships are often volatile and exhausting, even when you care deeply about one another, so, no, there’s no such thing as a karmic soulmate relationship. Additionally, some people confuse karmic relationships with “twin flames,” but there are vast differences when comparing a karmic relationship vs twin flame.

Over time, a karmic relationship will become increasingly difficult to maintain, but while these unhealthy relationships tend to be short-lived, they can be learning experiences and opportunities for personal growth.

What Are the Signs of a Karmic Relationship?

When caught up in a karmic relationship, it can be hard to recognize red flags. It’s easy to overlook issues when you have passionate feelings for someone. If you feel magnetically drawn to your partner, watch out for these common karmic relationship patterns and signs. 


A karmic relationship can feel all-consuming. You may feel like you’re addicted to your partner or like you need to be around them all the time. A codependent dynamic can make it challenging to end things, even when one or both partners feels unhappy in the relationship. 

“Karmic relationships indicate feeling or expressing a passionate response very early on in a relationship. Oftentimes, instant chemistry is mutually felt. Sometimes, the drain of that connection or addiction to a partner is described as exhausting rather than feeling calmly settled in a grounded partnership.

Talkspace therapist Elizabeth Keohan, LCSW-C, LICSW, LCSW


While healthy relationships are characterized by stability, karmic relationships tend to be full of ups and downs. These relationships can be explosive, shifting from moments of passion to fiery arguments at the flick of a switch. At times, you may feel thrilled with your partner, but at other moments, you might feel miserable with your relationship problems

Constant arguing

It’s normal for couples to disagree every once in a while, but you and your partner shouldn’t be discussing how to stop fighting in a relationship all the time. Most couples in healthy relationships won’t argue every day, or even every week. Your relationship may have a karmic dynamic if you and your partner are constantly in conflict and seem to always have unresolved issues.

Feeling on edge

It’s hard to know what to expect in a karmic relationship, and that instability can lead to constant feelings of unease, and even relationship anxiety. When minor disagreements erupt into major arguments, it can feel like the relationship is doomed to end at any time. If you’re in a karmic relationship, you may feel like you’re always waiting for something to go wrong. 

The Tricky Dynamic of a Karmic Relationship

Couples with karmic bonds often have intense chemistry. When your relationship is going well, you may feel as though things are perfect. The unpredictability of the relationship can even feel exciting. These emotions often make it difficult to acknowledge the more negative aspects of your relationship. 

Even though a karmic connection can feel good at times, this relationship dynamic can be deeply toxic. These relationships may lead to potentially harmful behaviors, such as:

  • Feeling desperate for your partner’s approval
  • Lying or hiding things from your partner to avoid a fight
  • Possessiveness or jealousy
  • Feeling emotionally and physically drained
  • Wanting to control your partner
  • Feeling guilty when you express how you feel
  • Being intimidated or fearful of your partner

How to Get Out of a Karmic Relationship

It can be hard to end a relationship, especially if you and your partner have a strong bond. People often report a decline in their well-being after ending a romantic relationship. While a breakup may be painful in the short term, ending a toxic relationship can lead to long-term fulfillment and growth. 

If you’re ready to leave your karmic partner but aren’t sure how to walk away, these tips will help you find the strength you need.

Find sources of support

It’s common for people in karmic relationships to feel dependent on their partner. Reaching out to family and friends for support can give you the strength you need to leave. Research also shows that a strong support system can reduce feelings of psychological distress. 

Be firm

When you end things, be clear and firm in your feelings. Try to avoid an argument or a long, drawn-out conversation. If you’re worried about how your partner will react, it’s OK to end the relationship via text or email for your safety. 

Cut off contact

After you end a karmic relationship, you might miss your partner or find that you’re starting to focus on the relationship’s positive aspects. This can lead to a break-up/make-up cycle. It’s best to cut off contact with your partner, including contact on social media, so you both have the space you need.

Practice self-care

Instead of allowing negative emotions to consume you or beating yourself up for the past, try to create a positive environment. Focus on activities you love and spend time with people you care about. While you won’t feel better overnight, self-care can help you to heal. 

Consider therapy

Leaving a karmic relationship can be difficult, but recovering from it can be even more complicated. Through certain types of either in-person or online therapy, such as Imago therapy, a therapist can help you to understand what went wrong in your past relationship. With their help, you’ll be able to learn healthy communication skills, grow as a person mentally, and identify what you need in future relationships.  

“We grow from every relationship, and although it may be time to separate, it’s more than OK to take some time to reflect independently about what is not serving you in a relationship any longer, especially if you feel overworked from your point of view. Accepting your growth or change is one place to start to better understand what you may need elsewhere. Of course, talking it through with a professional or trusted friend can always help add perspective on how to move on healthfully.”

Talkspace therapist Elizabeth Keohan, LCSW-C, LICSW, LCSW

Finding the Courage & Toolset to Break Free

Karmic relationships can be enticing, but these dramatic partnerships are ultimately toxic. If you have an unhealthy karmic connection with your partner, a therapist at Talkspace can help you to end the relationship and move forward. Don’t be afraid to seek help for your mental health if you feel trapped in a destructive relationship.


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Talkspace articles are written by experienced mental health-wellness contributors; they are grounded in scientific research and evidence-based practices. Articles are extensively reviewed by our team of clinical experts (therapists and psychiatrists of various specialties) to ensure content is accurate and on par with current industry standards.

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