What Is Love Addiction?
Relationship/Love Addicts tend pursue partners they are intensely attracted to, but who abandon them when things get serious, leading to panic, despair and feelings of worthlessness. Romance Addicts chase people whom they have a strong initial attraction to, but move on once the romantic high passes, and they start to feel ‘trapped’ – leading to the abandonment of potential partners and chronic loneliness.
Relationship Addicts and Romance Addicts often pursue each other, leading to negative consequences for both, as neither get their needs met and both parties feel the pain of yet another failed relationship.
You Know You Are Suffering From Love Addiction If You:
- Find yourself repeatedly getting into relationships with unavailable, uncommitted or controlling partners? Or do you lose interest after the excitement fades away?
- Believe you need to be in a relationship in order to feel whole?
- Fantasize or obsess about a lover, at the expense of other areas of life such as self-esteem, work, relationships, physical or mental health?
- Quickly feel intensely attracted to romantic partners who seem to want you at first, then turn cold or abandon you when the relationship starts to get serious?
- Feel panicky or despondent and cling tighter when your partner pushes you away or rejects you, as your sense of self worth seems dependent on their love and acceptance?
- Go from one relationship to the next once the romance wears off, and end up feeling lonely and unfulfilled?
If you answered yes to any of these questions you may be dealing with Relationship Addiction, Love Addiction or Romance Addiction. Contrary to what many people believe, and what you are feeling, it’s not about love, but a desperate attempt to get your self worth validated – either through a connection to an intimate partner, or the ‘high’ of romance.
What Is The Cause of Love Addiction?
Vulnerability to love addiction occurs when children are neglected, abused, or unable to bond securely with their caregivers – usually their parents. Due to emotional loss and neglect, these children come to believe they are unlovable and fear rejection and abandonment by their parents. This creates an emotional longing or ‘hunger’ for love that follows them into adulthood, as their childhood needs for nurturance, support and healthy connection have never been met.
If you are prone to love addiction then you probably fantasize about being rescued by someone who has the ‘power’ to make you feel lovable and whole as a person. You may feel driven to find someone who will make you feel complete, not realizing that the solutions to low self-esteem and insecurity lay within yourself. You probably choose partners who, in the end, remind you of the caregivers who neglected, abused or abandoned you. In other words, you keep choosing the ‘Devil You Know’. You may think that these relationships are exciting, but in fact, it is anxiety you are experiencing, as these romantic entanglements are the opposite of secure, calm or comforting. The truth is, you need to heal yourself first, before inviting another person to share your world.
Unfortunately, relationship addicts are doomed to repeat the same painful cycles of pursuit and abandonment if they continue to select partners who ultimately make them feel worthless and unlovable. This repetitive pattern leads to frantic attempts to hold on to a relationship in order to prove that the opposite is true. At the other end of the spectrum, romance addicts run from relationships due to fear of intimacy, which they confuse with being smothered or trapped. Romance addicts also falsely believe that love has disappeared when the excitement starts to wane, leading them to move on to the next thrill. What both romance addicts and relationship addicts have in common is low self-worth and the belief that they need others in order to feel complete or adequate. But the reverse is actually the case – you need to feel confident and secure within yourself, and no one else can ever give this to you.
Love addiction is triggered by unmet emotional needs and a compulsion to avoid feelings of worthlessness and abandonment by pursuing and losing oneself in intimate relationships.
Romance and relationship addiction lead to negative consequences, including loss of personal control, and obsessively believing that you have to be in a relationship in order to feel good about yourself.
If you justify and repeatedly engage in destructive relationship patterns to manage your emotions, you are trapped in addictive behavior and need help to break the cycle and rebuild your sense of independence and self-worth.
Want to break free from compulsive relationships? Ready to get out of relationship hell?
Online Video Counseling can help you overcome these negative relationship patterns so you can finally find the love you deserve because you know you’re worth it!
The first step to recovery from love addiction is the same as for any other type of addictive behavior – admission of the problem. Be honest with yourself that you are hurting inside, and that your sense of identity and self-worth are shaky. And despite a compulsive drive to connect with love partners, these relationships have probably never made you feel truly happy or whole. Most likely they have left you feeling lonely and sad at best, or emotionally devastated at worst. You must stop the compulsive behavior and learn to deal constructively with the painful feelings that come up, without self-medicating your emotions by pursuing another ill-fated relationship.
How Video Counseling & Therapy Can Help
If you are ready to take back control of your life from love addiction please contact me. Together we can help you create an effective relapse prevention plan to help you manage your emotions, triggers, addictive thinking, and high-risk situations. In counseling you will also learn to:
- Understand the roots of love addiction, and what you specifically need to heal and break free of compulsive relationship patterns.
- Manage and overcome abandonment anxiety and feelings of low self-worth – from the inside out.
- Discover your legitimate emotional and relationship needs – and find healthy ways to meet them.
- Stop looking for outside validation that you are a worthwhile human being, and get to know, respect and care for yourself better.
- Recognize when you are ready for an intimate relationship – for all the right reasons – meaning you feel whole and prepared to share your life and love with another person.
- Become more confident about your ability to form a secure love bond, and comfortable taking your time finding the right relationship because you believe this is healthy and what you deserve.
Finally, Find the Love You Deserve Because You Know You’re Worth It!
Although you may use relationship fantasies to escape pain, clinging to a false reality is the source of greater suffering. You can only create a better life by letting go of the fantasy and building a positive relationship with yourself first. Counseling can show you how.