Do you ever wonder why you only attract the wrong men in your life? Why does it seem like the only men interested in you are players, commitment-phobes, emotionally unavailable, or just not ready for anything serious? There’s a surprising reason why and once you understand it, you’ll change your dating experience for good.
Let me begin with a little story. Imagine that there was a little girl who went through some trauma and abuse. She never told anyone what happened to her because she thought it was her fault.
She grew up thinking she was a “bad girl” and did everything in her power to prove she wasn’t. She tried to be perfect at school and at home but she could never shake the feelings of shame and worthlessness deep inside her.
Once boys finally became interested in her, she loved the attention. But when they started treating her badly, instead of walking away, she held on tighter because she was afraid of being alone.
Even though she really wanted to be treated like a princess, deep down she didn’t believe she deserved it. So, each relationship began and ended the same way: with lies and heartbreak.
When she learned to forgive the people who hurt her, reject the lies that she was never good enough, and receive the truth about who she truly was, she finally met the man of her dreams who did treat her like a princess.
I was that little girl.
I share this story with you because it explains why so many of us sabotage ourselves. In other words, we say we want something—a better career, a better relationship, a better life—but, deep down, we don’t believe we deserve it.
We have deeply held beliefs that we aren’t good enough, or smart enough, or pretty enough.
Or, we’ve had experiences where someone or something told us we were a failure and we would never amount to anything. These are toxic beliefs that prevent us from experiencing the love we really want.
The result? We attract into our lives what we believe we deserve. But that’s not the real problem. The reason why you get stuck with the wrong men is that you choose them and then stay too blasted long!
Here’s why: Ken Page, a pyschotherapist who specializes in understanding attraction and intimacy said,
“All of us have unresolved childhood hurts due to betrayal, anger, manipulation, or abuse. Unconsciously, we seek healing through our partner. And we try to achieve this healing by bonding with someone we sense might hurt us in similar ways to how we were hurt as children, in the hope that we can then convince him or her to finally love and accept us.”
In other words, we tend to be intensely attracted to people who confirm the deep toxic beliefs we have about ourselves. We hope that they’ll finally accept us instead of abandoning us, but 9 times out of 10, they don’t.
If you can trace a pattern of relationships with men who mistreat you, abuse you, lie to you, or leave you, chances are there is something deep within you that believes you don’t deserve to be treated better. We only go after what we believe we can have.
My advice to you is to do some soul searching to get to the heart of the matter. Writing in a journal is a great way to start. Ask yourself questions like:
• What do all my relationships—past and present—have in common?
• What thoughts do I have about myself ? Sit quietly and write down the thoughts that run through your mind. For example, I used to tell myself—“you’re such a loser” every time I made a mistake, no matter how big or small, but I didn’t even realize I was saying it until I wrote it down.
• When was the last time I thought this about myself? What triggered these thoughts?
• When was the first time I thought this about myself?
You may need to have support from someone else while you go through these exercises, someone like a spiritual leader, therapist, or a coach so that they can walk alongside you, point out your blind spots, and cheer you on when you feel like giving in to your patterns.
The first step is to figure out what you believe about yourself. Once you change your beliefs, you will begin to change how you choose the people you give your heart to.
BMWK, let’s discuss! What patterns do you see in the kinds of men you’ve attracted?