For most of us relationships have been an ongoing mystery. Relationships appear to work rather easy for some while others are doomed from the start. As we experience different encounters with intimate relationships there can be a number of reasons why they tend to fail. Understanding relationship failure at the core takes courage. Owning your faults and mistakes in a relationship is scary but holds the ending benefit of the next one being health and long-lasting.
Manipulation and unresolved past trauma are common factors of relationship failure that very few consider being an issue. However, both lead to an unhappy union, relationship disaster, and destruction of the relationship and each individual.
Manipulation as your best form of communication: Manipulation is the act of coercing others in an underhanded, abusive, and even deceptive way to get what you want. People that use manipulation as their primary form of communication normally operate out of fear instead of love. If you or your partner are making decisions based out of fear there may be a sense of lack, a strong need to control, and a great amount of stress that is added to the relationship in order to keep the secret agenda from being revealed.
Practicing manipulation does not allow you to truly get to know the other person because the opportunity to be oneself and express love was not allowed due to fear. Manipulation can be done in many forms, such as lying, withholding the truth, twisting words, whining, shaming, blaming, withholding sex, and the silent treatment. Manipulation ultimately may sabotage the relationship and or leave the other person feeling very dissatisfied and resentful. Eventually, the relationship ends up dissolving which is the worst fear of the manipulator.
Past Trauma: We all have experienced some type of trauma in our lives. Childhood trauma seems to be the leading cause of unhealthy relationships. Childhood wounds stay with us and drive decisions unconsciously trying to fix the past. Let’s look at a few childhood scenarios. You’ll be able to see your mate or yourself and how trauma is replayed and interfering in making a relationship last.
Example #1 – Scapegoat or black sheep that only felt loved when self-sacrificing or giving to others, needs were not validated or met as a child and feels unworthy therefore does not ask or expects anything in return. This shy and unassertive codependent is attracted to the overly confident, controlling, aggressive person
Example #2 – Narcissist receives love as a reward for their achievements and were often belittled, humiliated, and abused if they did not meet their parents’ expectations. Love is conditional and only received if they make their parents look good. This charming and appearing confident person is attracted to the naïve, submissive, and unassertive person that does not require anything.
Example #3 – Sexually abused that has been violated and perceives sex as something bad or dirty. This person fears intimacy, does not trust, may fall into depression, and exhibits either little or no sexual desire or extremely high levels of sex with many partners to avoid intimacy.
There are many reasons why relationship fail. Manipulation and past trauma are two areas that are sometimes overlooked in relationship failure. Acknowledging your wrongdoing in the relationship is a great first step in preparing for change and healthier relationships. Taking time to grow from past issues develops your mental and emotional health which in return increases the odds of sustaining a long-term relationship.