Attracted to the wrong type

By

Attracted to the wrong type
Do you date people with problems just to be needed? Your past is limiting your present.

One of the most common problems I see among single people is attraction to the wrong type. It doesn’t matter if you are a man attracted to “needy divas” or a woman attracted to “bad boys.” The result is the same; someone is going to get used, hurt and rejected and that someone is YOU. I meet these people weekly because they write to me. In the box where it says “fill in your main concern” they write “attracted to wrong types.” They are very aware of the problem and have little difficulty telling me about the list of “misfits.” The conversation changes when I ask, “What’s in it for you?” This is where they draw a blank, and where the work is going to begin. None of us wants to admit we are actually choosing people who will use or hurt us. None of us wants to admit we could break the cycle and set our bar higher, dating only those who treat us with respect, honesty, and dignity. It’s painful to think that we may be sabotaging ourselves on purpose because we don’t believe we deserve someone honorable.
Dating a “type” of person has a lot to do with our need to control. We feel that we understand a certain type of person, and we are familiar with their quirks or sickness. It stems from our family of origin or what we saw happen in our family of origin. We decide it is better to have something familiar than something totally new and unexpected. How could we possibly control someone who treated us with love and warmth if we grew up in abuse? In fact, many people who grow up in abuse will be attracted to abusers. They understand the cues surrounding when the abuse will happen and, because they grew up with it, it is familiar to them. Although it is unacceptable behavior to friends and colleagues (they esteem you higher than you do yourself), to you it is the norm.
If you find yourself dating or attracting the same type of person who doesn’t have your best interests at heart, it may be wise to ask yourself a few questions. These are painful questions, but they aren’t meant to be critical. They are meant to help encourage you to understand why you would settle for someone whose intention is to hurt or use you, rather than love and care for you.
1. What are you afraid of? Why do you settle for this type time after time?
2. What is your first memory of your father and mother? Write down every image that comes into your mind.
3. What did your dad say about women/men?
4. What did your mom tell you was a woman’s/man’s job?
5. What did your parents expect out of life?
6. What do you want to do with your life?
7. How are you benefitting from dating this type? I know this is tough, but we all choose behaviors we benefit from even when they are twisted.
8. Who loves you, and why do they love you? Write down five reasons others love you.
9. Do you look the way you have to look to attract the type of person you want to attract? If not, what would you have to do to change that? Is it worth doing? If not, why?

Article contributed by

Mary Jo Rapini

Counselor/Therapist

For more information go to: www.maryjorapini.com
Talk to me on my fan page: http://www.facebook.com/maryjorapini
Tweet me: @MaryJoRapini
Read my Love and Relationships Blog on Chron.com
Ask me questions on Fox26 in Houston, TX and watch every Thursday Morning at 9am for “Mind, Body, Soul with Mary Jo” and Friday Morning's at 8am for “Healthy Happy Hour with Mary Jo”

Location: Houston, TX
Credentials: LPC
Other Articles/News by Mary Jo Rapini:

5 Ways To Stuff Your Turkey With Gratitude

By

Many of us grew up sharing Thanksgiving with family around the dining room table. Our parents or grandparents usually hosted the meal, and we ate with family and became re-acquainted with family we may not have seen since the Thanksgiving before. Times have changed and family members may have moved due to work obligations, school choices and raising families of ... Read more

Baby Boomers: Take Your Marriage From Boring To Blissful!

By

Boomers have always been independent and have made their own way. Nowhere is that showing up more than in marital status. Since 1990, the divorce rate has gone down in the United States for everyone but the boomers. Those over 50 years of age have seen divorce rates double, and if you're over fifty, you've probably seen several of your friends split ... Read more

A Soul Mate Isn't A Soul Mate Without These 4 Things

By

Time Magazine recently reported on a concept many of us have, "That good marriages and relationships are based on finding our soul mate or our perfect one." This expectation is shaped by society's focus on physical attraction and messages from our friends, family and our favorite television shows, none of which are actually true as far as having a ... Read more

See More

 
Latest Expert Videos
ASK YOURTANGO MORE QUESTIONS
Must-see Videos
SEE MORE VIDEOS
Most Popular