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Why Do I Always End Up in Lousy Relationships?

Why do I always end up in lousy relationships?

When I’m asked this question, I sometimes respond with a question of my own: What has informed you that you are not worthy of something better? In working with clients that have found themselves in unsustainable romantic relationships, I often find that at some point during their key developmental years, they were informed that they didn’t deserve consistent and unconditional love. I’ve found it to be true that there is usually something in a person’s past important relationships that informs their current and future partnerships. When I help a client to look at the trajectory of the relationships that they haven’t been happy in, they are able to see the correlation between then and now. They’re able to explore the meaning that they’ve made of the messages they’ve received about relationships and about being worthy of love.

Isn’t it possible that some people are just unlucky in love?

It’s possible to be unlucky at love, but it’s more likely that luck isn’t the only factor, and there is some component of hard work and expertise that contributes to relational success. Most people don’t grow up in families where emotional intelligence and relational skills are actively taught. There’s typically a lot of assumptions made in families of origins, along with unspoken rules and specific roles that each family member takes on. These experiences tend to stick with us as we navigate young adulthood and find ourselves intertwined with another person. That’s when things get complicated because the person that we connect with brings their own set of assumptions about relationships, along with their own understanding of unspoken rules and roles. It can get messy quickly, or the trouble can take years to fester before you realize that the unhappy relationship that you’re in is likely going to end, luck or no luck.

Putting an end to relationship ruin

Putting an end to a pattern of relationships in ruin takes time and effort. It requires thoughtful introspection. This usually leads to deep conversation about the messages received, during earlier stages in life, that have not been helpful in developing a solid relational skill set. It’s never too late to acquire new skills that can change your life. Getting to know yourself more fully and embracing the idea that you are indeed worthy of love is a good place to start. It takes time and practice for this new message to take hold. Learning about healthy relational dynamics, while setting new boundaries and goals for yourself, can lead you to a happier experience of love in the future.

To move in the direction of a healthy romantic partnership, that is worthy of YOU, it’s necessary to develop a new approach to finding and keeping the love that you desire to have in your life. Therapy can help. Call or email me for a free consultation.

Katey Villalon, LMFT

Photo by Tim Mossholder


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