We come out of our family of origin with a blueprint of how we attach to others. The closer someone is to another person, the greater the likelihood that their attachment style can become challenged, and that the strains will bring out their worst qualities, such as jealousy, anger, and enmeshment, often leading to self-sabotaging behavior.
Many people can re-work how they attach in adulthood and thrive in romantic relationships.
Journal about the experiences in your relationship that trigger behaviors you experience as self-sabotaging. Ask yourself: What was happening? What did you feel at the time? What were you afraid of? How likely is it that the outcome you feared would happen?
Having an awareness of what triggers these behaviors can prepare us for the inevitable conflicts that arise.
Insecurity in relationships is inevitable because everybody has issues to work on.
It’s critical to know what yours are. With this insight, a person can then stop negative behaviors, learn to tolerate the discomfort, and engage in alternative and more healthy behavior.
Our strong emotional reactions can be our best clues to unfinished business from our past.
The next time you experience a reaction that you suspect may be out of proportion from what you identify as the triggering event, take a moment to pause before responding.
If specific themes continue to arise, at some point it could be helpful to speak to your partner.
They can be an asset, as they can help you point out self-sabotaging behaviors as they arise.
Cultivating self-compassion is essential for those who struggle with low self-esteem, especially when this manifests in relationships.
Seeking a therapist as a collaborator is a helpful way to begin healing from past hurts, finding self-acceptance, and moving closer to lasting and fulfilling love.
Allowing your partner room and opportunity to do these same things will be the key to establishing a healthy, interdependent relationship.
The aim of Gaslighting is to deny the other person's reality or experiences. It is a sign that you don't really believe your partners' feelings are real.
For example, if your partner says: "I'm really upset that you canceled our date", you respond with something like: "You're not really upset, it's your fault I canceled and you're just trying to blame me for it."