To have a relationship that is healthy and functional is something that most people want in this world. Now, for some people this is reality and for others; this is often nothing more than a good idea and something that eludes them.
And while there are people who have fulfilling relationships and others who want them; there is also another dynamic that goes on. These are people who may develop a relationship with someone or meet another person who is appropriate and who treats them well, and yet the relationship doesn’t last.
On the surface, one may have the need to be with another person that appreciates, respects and values who they are. However, although this is what is going on at a conscious level, there is a clear difference between what is actually happening in one’s life.
One is aware of what they need, but this is having very little impact on one achieving that which they truly desire – a fulfilling relationship.
What’s Showing Up?
It is often said that if one wants to understand what’s going on at a deeper level and all that is out of conscious awareness - one should look at their behaviour. And aside from ones behaviour, is what is showing up in one’s life and the kind of relationships that one is attracting.
For the person that sabotages a healthy relationship or the chance of having one: it is clear that something is out of alignment.
What will make a big difference here is now aware someone is of what is going on. While for some, this may be a process that goes on out of their awareness; for others this will be all too clear.
If this process is not known, one is likely to feel frustrated, angry and powerless. And even if it is known this, can still be experienced. But for the person that is aware, it will likely include a sense of hope that it can be different.
However, if one is in a position to attract someone who is functional in the first place, it may be as sign that they are fairly aware already.
One of the big challenges here for people who sabotage functional relationships is that what they say they want is not necessarily what they are attracted to. On one side they can describe the person they want and yet emotionally this is not pressing their buttons.
And so even if they meet or end up with the type of person that they say they want; the all important attraction element is missing. The interesting thing about attraction is that what one can be attracted to, is not always functional or healthy.
The mind may come up with different reasons as to why this is. These will often be rationalisations or justifications and other defence mechanisms that the ego mind will use as a way for one to stay in their head and to avoid what is really going on for them.
As a result of the ego mind, these could then create the following ’reasons’: that one finds the other person to be boring; that they have nothing in common or that they don’t have ‘feelings’ for them. One may have the awareness to see that while they do find the other person to be right, there is internal resistance taking place.
Attraction is often seen as something positive and what happens when one meets someone who is right for them. And yet for people who have been attracted to someone who latter went on to abuse them or take advantage of them; it becomes clear that being attracted to someone is not always a sign of compatibility.
So on one side, one feel say that they are not attracted to someone who is right for them and on the other side feel attracted to people who they later find to be abusive and inappropriate.
Now consciously, this can make very little sense. If one is attracted to someone then it feels natural to go with it and to not resist the desire that is being created.
The Main Challenge
Although this process may feel right and the body may crave this person; it doesn’t mean that this will lead to a functional or a fulfilling relationship. And one of the biggest reasons for this is that what is classed as attractive is what is often classed as familiar.
Now, the ego mind creates associations of what is safe around what is familiar. This is usually through repetition or it could be due to an experience that was traumatic and through the intensity of it, it became interpreted as familiar.
And what is classed as familiar can be functional, healthy and fulfilling and it can also be dysfunctional, unhealthy and unfulfilling. So if the ego mind has come to associate certain behaviour and experiences as familiar and therefore safe, these will be what one is attracted to.
The body can then crave to be around people who are not right for them and also cause one to feel withdrawal symptoms if they are not around them; similar to how a drug addict will feel without their regular dose.
The childhood years are often cited as being where one will form their associations of what they are attracted to and what they are not. And as these years are so powerful in shaping who one is and how one will see the world; it is not much of a surprise.
And as the caregiver that one has during this time is not always functional or healthy, it can set one up to be attracted to unhealthy people. The ego mind doesn’t say ‘this is not healthy or functional, so I’m not accepting this’, all it can do it create associations of familiarity around what is happening.
The experiences that one has in latter life can build on what happened in ones childhood years. So one can then end up creating a greater tolerance for abusive relationships; as a result of the early wounds that were created. And then it could be that due to certain adult traumas, one became vulnerable to unhealthy relationships.
When it comes to attracting someone who is right, it is important that one feels together internally. If one feels that part of them wants one thing and yet another part of them wants something else; it is a sign that letting go needs to occur.
Being aware of this is the first thing and the next stage is to do something about it. For some people it may be enough to read about this or to speak to a trusted friend. And for others, healing or therapy will be needed.
Oliver JR Cooper
Author of 25 books, Transformational Writer, Teacher & Consultant.
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That which is contained within these articles is based on my own empirical understanding and is true for me at the time they were written. However, as I continue to grow, what I perceive as the truth will inevitably change and as a result of this - parts of these articles may not reflect my current outlook.