We are all attracted to opposite personality types. Codependents and Emotional Manipulators
The Human Magnet Syndrome (Book Excerpt)
Chapter 7: The Human Magnet Syndrome
Powers greater than ourselves often waylay our well-meaning plans to land on the tropical shores of our dreams. Experience, maps, radar and even the stars may not be enough to guide us to our intended port of call. As wayward captains whose ships are regularly diverted to unplanned destinations, we are prone to experience a unique sense of frustration, disappointment and loss. If only we could control the formidable forces that compel our vessels to sail in directions we did not intend to go and to where we are ultimately left feeling unfulfilled and emotionally stranded.
Even if we know where we intend to set sail or where we will drop our proverbial anchor, powerful influences tend to take control. These come in two versions: one that is mild and benign and the other wild and treacherous. Both are intricately tied into the mental health of the ship’s commander. For the healthy captain, it will be smooth sailing despite landing in a destination that may not have been included in his original itinerary. The not so healthy and emotionally burdened captain may also find his ship on unfamiliar shores, but will have battled gale force winds and dangerous currents to get there. Both will ponder the mystery of why they, despite doing everything right, ended up in unplanned places. Only one will enjoy the island of their dreams. The other, perhaps a Codependent, will find himself miserable over the outcome. Even though the Codependents and Emotional Manipulator captains run their ships ashore landing on a reef, or ending up in Iceland while intending to land in Miami, both may find themselves back behind the the helm of their ship, only repeat their fantastic but dysfunctional voyage.
The captain/boat metaphor aptly illustrates how our relationship preferences may be undermined by powerful unconscious forces that unwittingly bring us to unsatisfying and discontented and dysfunctional relationships, despite our best intentions. As much as we desire a relationship befitting a dream, a strong magnetic-like energy force prevents us from finding the arms of the person that provides us with the love, respect and care that we had hoped for and believed we deserved. As much as we aspire to be the captains of our own ships and that our romantic relationships directly result from our well thought out plans and preparations, it is inevitable that we all fall prey to an inherent potent magnetic-like love force. Its strength draws us to seek idealistic romantic partners who uniquely match up to our distinctive magnetic orientation. Whether we end up in Iceland or Miami, we will have gotten there due to our innate inclination to drift on a relational path toward a person’s magnetic force that is opposite from our own.
The plight of magnetically connected lovers (The Human Magnet Syndrome) is another metaphorical explanation of the unconscious appeal that brings opposite, but compatible, companions together into an enduring and stable relationship. Although much simpler and less comprehensive than the Continuum of Self Theory, it follows the same basic tenant that two prospective romantic partners are attracted to each other as a result of their opposite, but well matched, and compatible personality types. While the Continuum of Self focuses on a person’s self-orientation or Continuum of Self Values (CSV’s), the Human Magnet Syndrome conceptualizes the attraction dynamics though the use of a metaphorical compass and magnets, both of which are oriented toward one of two magnetic poles, or as I refer to them, magnetic roles. As Human Magnets, we are pulled toward a romantic particular partner whose magnetic polarity is contrary to ours.
Despite our efforts to a find a romantic partner who unconditionally loves respects and cares for us and participates in a mutual and reciprocal relationship, we are inclined to follow a metaphorical love compass that will instinctively direct our relationship choices. Whether we realize it or not, we all use this compass when we seek an ideal romantic partner. We are obliged to follow the direction in which we are lead, regardless of our conscious intentions to take a different route. Even with our promises to or selves to make rational, safe and healthy choices, we are unable to resist the captivating pull toward the direction that our compass points. Star-crossed lovers are, therefore, inevitably brought together not because of their conscious choices, but rather because they followed their metaphorical compass into each other’s loving embrace.\
Ross Rosenberg, M.Ed., LCPC,CADC
Clinical Care Consultants
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