Dating can be a complicated and frustrating experience and most people wonder whether or not it’s worth the trouble at least once in their lifetime. While dating poses a great many difficulties to overcome one of the worst is constantly finding that you attracted to people who you know will not make you happy. Many people unintentionally seek out others who mesh very poorly with them and continue this behavior through failed relationship after failed relationship. Friends or relatives who try to intervene do not often help the situation; though their insight should be taken into account, it is often ignored. For the most part, people who suffer from this problem understand that they do, in fact, have a problem, but why they continue this destructive behavior is not so easily understood.
Possible Problems: There can be many reason for a person to seek out those that they know will end up hurting them or causing them to feel unhappy. Some of the most common tend to stem from their introduction into dating or the way in which they were treated by those closest to them as children:
- Lack of Affection: Ranging from those children who were ignored to those in more severe cases or were physically abused the lack of affection as child can have an enormous impact on a person’s future relationships. Many people who were denied the comfort of both physical and mental forms of affection as children have great difficulty interpreting their own feelings about it later on. Often people who suffer this kind of problem will have difficulties with being touched; experiencing a great deal of insecurity and need constant reassuring from their partner’s while at the same time having difficulty opening up.
- Abuse: There are many forms of abuse that child can experience and all can have a devastating effect on the way they perceive those in their lives. Many of the people who experience abuse will have great difficulty trusting; emotional problems and a wide range of other mental issues that they might not even be aware of. Some of the people that experience abuse as children will unknowingly seek to repeat the pattern by entering into a relationship with someone who continues this abuse. In many cases the insecurity and pain of the person with this kind problem can be so great that they actually believe that they deserve more abuse.
- Stereotype: In some cases people will chase the idea of what they believe is the right kind of person simply because they are under the impression that it is the type others would want. While they might personally not share the same taste, their need to be accepted by others is so strong that they will ignore their own feelings in favor of getting that approval.
- Bad Prior Relationship: While some people begin dating with these kinds of issues, others are perfectly fine until they encounter a person who deeply hurts them. After enduring such pain many people tend to become very emotional which can cause problems in the future. Often people blame themselves for the failed relationship and enter into a pattern of behavior that is highly destructive to their life. While seeking to repair the damage through another person they will often become more confused about who they are and what they want in their desperation not to allow another failed relationship.
Though it can be difficult, understanding why you behave the way in which you do is a wonderful first step. Many people have unique lives that through a series of circumstances lead them toward this kind of behavior; it can be helpful to back track to when you first believe you began acting this way and try to figure out what led you to it.
Changing a pattern of behavior, especially one that has been going on for some time, is no easy task. It often requires a great deal of self-analysis and advice from others who you trust. With time, help and patience many people can completely rid themselves of such destructive tendencies and can enjoy happy, healthy relationships:
- Break the Pattern: Certain social places are known for attracting specific types of people; if these types have been a poor choice for your relationships it might be time to find a new place to socialize. Often certain memories that you will naturally think about while in such places will also help to trigger some of the negative thoughts that lead you to repeating your mistakes. Start fresh with a new place where you can begin making new memories. Continuing to spend time with friends who encourage this behavior may also be a mistake, at least until you feel that you are strong enough to ignore their influence. Try to keep friends close that will help you through your problem.
- Get to Know Yourself: This might prove difficult for a great many people who are suffering from insecurity and believe their likes and dislikes to be unimportant. Again, the aid of good friends is an invaluable tool, but if you find yourself without help this might prove a good time to make new friendships. Because you will most likely be avoiding any friends who you believe are not helpful in this situation, you may be forced to explore alternative methods of making friends. Many communities host activities that you may want to try and online friend-finding services can easily match you with other who might be able to lend a hand with advice or just someone to talk to. Once you feel a little better about who you are and know what you do and don’t like about yourself, you may feel better prepared to enter into a relationship.
- Understanding Your Needs: Making the decision to enter into a relationship with another person can be a big one; entering into it without understanding what you want in a companion is not always the best way to achieve success. Most confidant people know that in order to be happy in a relationship, or dating, the people that they choose to be with must meet some of their criteria. This is not to say that you should have a rigid list of demands that potential suitors have to meet; simply know what qualities you hope to find in another person. If you enter into a relationship not knowing what you desire from the other person your needs might never be addressed as neither you nor your partner understand them. Taking the time to think about what qualities you find most attractive in an ideal partner may prove very useful in sending up red flags the next time you’re headed down that road to self destructive dating.
- Independence: While you try to work out your personal problems, hopefully with the help of those who love you, remember that sometimes a little space and time is needed before jumping back in. Be sure that you are free of any past relationships that may prove to be harmful to you and make a space for yourself that feels safe and positive. If you can achieve a healthy and positive state of mind you will more than likely realize that romance, while being a wonderful thing, is not something to that you need in order to be happy. Focusing on what will make you feel good about your life often leads to meeting people who have a positive influence on it. Take the time you need to change the course of your life so that if you do meet someone special you can proceed without fear or insecurity and instead make your way towards something that you can be proud of.