Self-Sabotaging Relationships – Part Two

by 13th August 2020

Most people want an intimate relationship

Most people want intimacy in a relationship, however, in a few people this can be linked to negative rather than positive experiences resulting in a push pull type of behaviour, that leads to a break-up or avoidance behaviour. This could all stem from trauma experienced in childhood, resulting in fear and lack of trust as an adult.

This is primarily because the twisting relationship with either a parent or caregiver had been broken by either abuse or abandonment, resulting in fear of intimacy. As an adult, they fear that people who they are deeply in love with will hurt them badly. Maybe as a child they were strangled in the relationship and could do nothing to escape. However, as an adult, they have the power to end the relationship or leave. Despite the fact that no abuse has taken place in their adult relationship, it’s the programme they are running from as a child.

The fear of abandonment and the fear of priority over physical and emotional needs

Often people worry that others will leave them when they are most vulnerable; when they start a relationship and begin to let their barriers down. The other issue is some people worry that in a relationship they will lose their identity and the ability to make decisions on their own; the fear of being controlled.

The signs of self-sabotage in relationships

Even the best of us can self-sabotage our relationships without realising. Here are just some common examples of how we do this:

  • You always have one eye on the exit.
  • You avoid commitment – Example: meeting parents or moving in together etc. You are always wondering if it goes wrong, how can I exit easily from the relationship. You know that commitment will make it harder to exit and will be a longer and more intense process due to financial and emotional consequences. So, you avoid this commitment at all costs.
  • You manipulate your partner – Manipulating is a form of abuse, and the aim is to deny the other persons reality or experiences. For instance, the partner says, “I’m really upset you cancelled our date.” They then reply with something like, “You’re not really upset, it’s your fault I cancelled, you’re just blaming me for it.” Manipulating is a sign that you don’t really believe your partner’s feelings are valued or real.
  • You’re known as a serial dater – You get this title as you never seem to “settle down”; never single but on constant dates most, if not every night. You never seem to commit in a relationship, and you just keep repeating the cycle. You don’t want to be known as the “player”, but you never seem to find someone you can commit too.
  • You are paranoid or extremely jealous – You are constantly worried your partner might be having an affair or seeing someone behind your back. You demand to control every aspect of their life and demand to be in constant contact. When they are not in your company you are texting and phoning to see where they are and what they are doing, even when they have told you. This is a sign of jealousy and lack of trust because you are constantly asking for proof that they are being faithful. They often then eventually break up with you as they find it too controlling.
  • You criticise everything they do – You criticise the clothes they wear, the way they clean or cook, and whatever they do you’re looking for perfection. This results in them consequently feeling that they are no good for you or inadequate. Sadly, you have become impossible to please, and your partner eventually gives up trying and breaks up with you and leaves the relationship.
  • You avoid facing problems – You convince yourself that you have the most outstanding relationship with absolutely no problems, even when that isn’t the case and is in reality far from it. When your partner wants to address an issue you avoid the topic by simple saying, “I don’t think we have a problem, it will go away.” This type of behaviour will result in resentment of your inability to face the issues together and your partner is likely to leave the relationship.
  • Sex with other people – Years ago sex before marriage was a no go area. If you did have sex before marriage you were certainly looked down upon, and if you had a child out of wedlock, even back in the ’60s, you brought shame upon the family. In today’s society, people do have sex before marriage. If you and you partner agree to open sex with other people, then that’s completely ok if that’s the kind of life you want to lead and it is completely consensual and both parties are 100% happy with this arrangement. However, if you are doing it behind their back, or on uncertain terms, going from affair to affair, this can be a sign of self-sabotage. You are doing one of the most hurtful things that you can do to any romantic partnership, maybe in the hope that deep down they will find out and leave you.
  • You always tear yourself down – You talk to yourself in the most critical way. The words you use are, “I’m not as smart as you.”, “I’m just an idiot, why are you with me.” etc. This is also a sign of very low self-esteem and most people do not enjoy being told that they love someone who is worthless. When, despite their constant reassurance that you are a great person, you keep tearing yourself down and they end up giving up, and sadly break up the relationship.

These problems can self-sabotage your relationship, however, NLP can help in your relationship avoid some of these common downfalls. Working with an NLP coach can help you to make changes and become the person you want to be.

If you need help because you think you may be unintentionally or intentionally sabotaging your own relationship, or you notice this in your partner, please feel free to contact me, by clicking the button below, and I am happy to help!

About Karen Baughan

Karen Baughan is an NLP Master Practitioner based in Bromsgrove, UK. Having used NLP to affect her own personal transformation, she now helps clients, from around the world, to transform their lives and achieve their dreams.

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