A relationship addict is someone who is addicted to being in a relationship and struggles to function or feel complete without one.
These people have probably had multiple relationships and messy breakups. They may seem to repeatedly make the same mistakes or get involved with the wrong people. They live in a world of paradoxes – craving love and affection but with a desperation that often attracts people who fear commitment or who treat them poorly.
This cycle can be painful and destructive and with all their energy going into finding, attracting and pleasing another person, they often have very little time and energy for themselves. Without a relationship they may feel lost, depressed, alone, empty, unworthy and anxious.
At the start of a relationship they will often display great excitement and move quickly from attraction to attachment. Sadly, the nature of these intense relationships means that the addict then experiences more anxiety as they struggle to build and maintain the commitment. A growing feeling of unease and dissatisfaction quickly develops.
When the relationship ends they are left at the mercy of despair, worthlessness, guilt and anger, constantly ruminating about what went wrong. Friends may try to comfort and reason with them, but deep down they want that relationship back, no matter how toxic it was.
The only cure they see is a new relationship.
Co-dependence – many addicts find themselves repeatedly in unhealthy co-dependant relationships. These relationships involve excessive control or compliance, often with one partner lacking self-sufficiency and autonomy. One person holds all the power and the addict goes along with it because they are afraid of losing the person. They may also have an overwhelming desire to “fix” the other person which makes them stay in the relationship much longer than is healthy.
Outbursts and apologies – relationship addicts often fear ‘rocking the boat’ and try to keep all of their complaints or issues to themselves. Sooner or later this descends into an angry outburst, often followed by strong feelings of guilt, remorse and fervent apologies.
Feelings of inadequacy – because relationship addicts measure most of their worth by their value to another person, their own self-view is often distorted. They rarely feel happy with their lives, their appearance or their own personality. They set extremely high expectations for themselves, believing they have to earn their worth from another, but they set very low standards for their partner.
Stress or depression – when things are not going well and the relationship needs are not being met the addict may start to feel very anxious, stressed or depressed. They may not have learned healthy ways to deal with emotions on their own or have strong enough self-worth to handle these things alone.
Patience – relationship addicts are often very patient people. They can withstand a lot that others might not endure in order to protect their relationship status. They may hang on to unhealthy or toxic relationships for far longer than many others would.
Treatment for Relationship Addiction
If you recognise some of these traits in yourself and want help to end this cycle, consider my unique form of hypnotherapy and coaching treatment. Together we can tackle the addiction head-on – identify the subconscious roots of the habit which perpetuate the addiction, find you freedom from the harmful urges and foster self-respect and self-worth.
With hypnosis and relationship coaching you can begin to find health and happiness in other areas of your life and begin to love and trust in yourself. This outlook is much more likely to result in happiness and true, lasting love from another. Please do get in touch to learn more about how I can help.