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8 Deep Questions To Ask Yourself If You Keep Attracting Toxic and Manipulative Partners

8 Deep Questions To Ask Yourself If You Keep Attracting Toxic and Manipulative Partners

Why does your history keep repeating itself?

Have you ever felt like you were a “garbage magnet” when it comes to your love life? Do you find yourself repeatedly dating and falling in love with manipulative men who have narcissistic personality traits? Are you confused about why this keeps happening to you over and over again?

If so, there are some deep relationship questions to ask yourself that can help reveal why you keep falling for such controlling guys.

Inner injuries stemming from circumstances and experiences of your early childhood, such as toxic family dynamics or bullying, affect your physical, emotional, and mental health as an adult, shaping the way you experience life.

These unconscious layers of trauma may lead you to seek out unhealthy, abusive people, who are in turn seeking vulnerable people (like you) to prey upon in order to meet their selfish need to feel significance, power, and control in relationships.

If you have unhealed inner injuries, you could be unknowingly attracting men with narcissistic personality traits.

 

Here are 8 deep relationship questions to ask yourself if you keep falling in love with controlling, manipulative men who have narcissistic personality traits:

 

1. Do you believe someone else will heal your wounds?

Perhaps you continually look for a partner to cling to and depend on to heal those painful wounds. What you need to understand, though, is that other people cannot heal your pain. Other people do not have the resources to fix another human being. The only person who can heal you is you.

You’ve been searching your whole life for someone to heal your wounds and the toxic guys you’ve been dating have been searching their whole lives for someone who needs precisely that. They fed your insecurities with all of that false charm and fake love, while you believed they could bandage your sores.

 

2. Do you believe you can change someone, and that they, in turn, can change you?

The more you try to force people to become what you want them to be, the more control you hand over to them. You lose our own power. You give them responsibility for your wellness. And in return you lose your dignity, self-respect and mental health.

If you think you can help the toxic guys you’ve dated understand their difficulties, you are only continuing this emotionally dependent cycle. You are trying to force them to take responsibility.

These guys are individuals, responsible for their own lives, and the desire for long-term change must come from within them.

 

3. Do you feel responsible for other people’s feelings?

Do you find yourself having difficulty setting limits with people or saying no? Do you have a hard time standing up for yourself?

Perhaps you take responsibility for others rather than letting them learn to take responsibility for themselves. You may believe it is your job to rescue or shield people from their own painful emotions or from the consequences of their own actions.

You might try to placate them, tell them it’s not their fault. Or you might try to shoulder the pain for them.

If you put other people’s needs before your own and see this as a righteous strength in your personality, it could be causing you to overlook toxic behavior in a partner. By doing so, you are once again not allowing that person to take responsibility for their own lives, their own behavior, and the resulting consequences, good or bad.

 

4. Do you neglect your own needs to avoid feeling “selfish” or “lazy”?

Do you feel guilty for taking care of yourself or doing things for yourself? Do you feel uncomfortable when you have “me” time? Do you only have a sense of worth if you are being productive or doing thing?

It could be that you have been trained from an early age, probably by parents, caregivers, or educators, that taking care of yourself or having leisure time and allowing yourself to rest is lazy, self-centered, and must be absolutely 100 percent avoided at all cost.

 

5. Are you a people pleaser?

Does it bother you when other people think poorly of you? Some people believe that it is a requirement to have people like them and they are willing to do almost anything to gain approval from others.

Some people are overly concerned about offending or hurting people’s feelings and as a result, become “people pleasers” who overlook their own needs in favor of someone else’s.

When you are a people-pleaser, you’re more likely to put up with inappropriate, hurtful and toxic behavior from a partner. You don’t want your special guy to feel too guilty about his bad behavior toward you, so you say, “It’s okay. I’m fine. Don’t worry. We’re fine.”

Written by JOANNE BROTHWELL, MSW Therapist

Joanne has over twenty years of experience as a therapist helping people overcome obstacles, improve their lives and achieve greater happiness. Using evidenced-based interventions, she provides therapy and coaching for individuals, couples and families. Joanne holds a master’s degree in clinical social work and is a certified professional coach.

Joanne approaches her counseling work from the lens of a therapist and as a individual who has experienced the devastation of psychological abuse.

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