You are a ‘nice’ person. You are quiet, reserved, talented, and generally considered an Ok person to be around. The only problem is that you find that you are always attracting manipulative and emotionally volatile people into your life. What is going on, you wonder…why does it happen over and over again? It seems like all of your relationship partners are different versions of the same crazy date! Read on if you want to find out some reasons why all your dates seem to be crazy.
“My friends tell me I have an intimacy problem. But they don’t really know me.”
I once knew a woman whose contention it was, that the only thing all of her problems had in common was herself. Relationships can be the same way. If you wind up being repeatedly involved with unstable people, the first thing you can do to improve things is to look at yourself.
These kinds of things can happen to good people who are uncomfortable with vulnerability and intimacy. If you have a bit of a problem expressing your emotions in a healthy way, you unintentionally limit your relationship options to people with the same problems as you. They will be the ones with difficulties maintaining a healthy relationship. You don’t really attract them, but rather you sort against the balanced people leaving only the volatile ones to peruse. Here are some reasons that can happen to you. See if you find any of them resonating:
- Their uninhibited boldness is a balance to the limits you place on yourself. If you are uncomfortable showing affection, then you are likely limiting yourself to the most bold and self-initiating of people. If you are REALLY timid, then making what you want clear can be a problem. If that is you, then you are a prime candidate for the bulldozer type partners. You know the type; they are the ones who are always willing to push you to the edge in order to have their own desires satisfied. Your disinclination to express your needs, in a sense, attracts those selfish types to your door.
- People who aren’t comfortable expressing their emotions quash them. The other persons own instability can actually stimulate your own suppressed emotions. Interacting with them, in a way, prevents you from numbing yourself and fading back into that indifferent feeling that allows you to rationalize being unengaged. In some situations, people overcompensate by objectifying their relationships and go wild in their sex lives thinking that they don’t need to be emotionally connected to date.
- When you inhibit your emotions, and turn away from intimacy only the folks whose emotions run hot enough will break through the barrier. Here is a news flash; they are usually emotionally unstable people. By suppressing yourself, you unknowingly self-select for people who over-express themselves. The folks who under express in this way easily get hooked on over-emotional people because it allows them to experience unfamiliar emotions vicariously through the drama brought to their life by the other person. Nice, huh.
- The other person’s addiction to drama makes you feel significant, and what really what gets emotionally repressed people hooked is often the drama. It excites you that they are in a continual state of crisis, always the victim of something. They always need a savior and this makes you feel indispensable—needed. Likely those are things you don’t feel very often because you have gone through your life avoiding vulnerability and intimacy. In so doing, unmindfully keeping your relationships as shallow as you can manage.
- Eventually, your unstable friend always finds a way to turn on you! They always manage to sabotage any peace and balance you find. The ugly truth is that always being stirred up—in that state of emotional crisis—makes them feel important too. Their fear is the same as yours; they fear being irrelevant. They just achieve their relief in the opposite way from you: through drama. So you get involved in this dance—a kind of cancerous tango—where you as the victim and them as the savior (or vice versa) shifts from manic joy to the depths of despair. It is this unconsciously toxic combination that wears you both out in the end.
- You discover the hard way that these ‘psychos’ usually end up leaving you. Time passes and you find along the way that you were willing to ransom more and more of your happiness each day to help fix their problems. It might even reach the point where you lose the ability to think and decide for yourself at all. Then the very person they helped create (you) becomes unattractive to them. In this whole unhealthy dance you have sacrificed your self worth, and as you surely know, people with no self worth have reached the summit of unattractiveness. So now, the only solution you have is to find another person to confuse things further.
- These people are unnaturally drawn to love triangles, especially with themselves in the middle between two other people. The triangle supplies unending fuel for their need for drama and additionally fuels the repressed person to feel the need to ‘win over’ the other person. Who doesn’t want to rescue another?
So, the point of all of this is that while these emotionally volatile and unbalanced people are responsible for their own actions, if you are finding yourself regularly allowing them into your life it is on you to stop suppressing your emotions. When you do, you will quickly find a world of other more balanced people to choose from.
If you don’t it’s your own fault.
SEE A LIFE COACH IN BATON ROUGE
Frank Hopkins is a life coach in Baton Rouge who is certified as a Professional Coach (CPC) by the Institute for Professional Excellence in Coaching (iPEC). Frank has helped numerous people to go through emotional change in a way that is positively transformative.