I heard it in the movie Juno that the best you can hope for is to “Find someone who loves you for exactly who you are.” Maybe it’s slightly paraphrased but you get the point. Isn’t that what we all want? To be accepted and loved for who we are; good, bad, or indifferent? How many of us go searching in all the wrong places for that? Or try to change ourselves to fit into the mold of what someone else wants? I mean, really think about it and your past experiences in relationships. How many people did you actually date that were interested in you for exactly who you were and didn’t have some kind of personal agenda? I’m sure there are a few of you who have been blessed early in life with finding that ‘once in a lifetime’ partner and I applaud you, sincerely! I’m glad you haven’t had to experience the heartaches and disappointment many of us have felt. I know I have dated some guys that….for lack of a better term were TOTAL LOSERS!! I don’t even know what I was thinking sometimes. Onward….
I dated men that weren’t emotionally available, I dated men who didn’t like women very much. I dated men that didn’t even like themselves very much. In my first marriage I ultimately married a guy like that. I thought, love was all I needed. I believed that if I found the right guy that everything would be ok. I thought I could change him and once we got married we would have this happy little family and all the bad stuff will go away. I put up with so much bad behavior from my boyfriends and then my first husband that I cringe just thinking about it now. I loved the feeling of falling in love; meeting that new guy and having that connection, and I would look for it often. The only time I broke up with someone was because I already had another guy in the wings. If I got broken up with I’d be on the hunt that night looking or a new love so I would feel better. I was highly codependent; thinking that I could fix any man with any kind of problem if I loved him enough. I believed I could change into what ever he wanted. But I never received any love back and couldn’t figure out why that was. I would ask myself “What is wrong with me?” Am I too ugly? Am I too fat? Am I not good enough? I thought that if I became the perfect person that they would have to love me…..I thought love was the answer to everything and that if someone loved me enough and if I loved them that nothing else mattered.
I lost friends, rejected my family and lost interests in things that mattered to me. I allowed their world to become my world and took on behaviors that weren’t mine. I exchanged the person I was for the person they wanted me to be. I changed my style, my hair, my weight, and my image. I thought that if I were just “good enough” they would love me. When I was rejected (which was plenty of times) I took it to mean that there was something wrong with me, not that possibly the guy was a total a-hole, but that I had the problem. Can you imagine? Maybe some of you can resonate! I hurt so badly inside during these times, I just can’t believe that I was so desperate. I sacrificed my career, education, and chances to travel. I just lost any part of me that made Kristen who she was and I did it on purpose! I was out of control and my friends were just sick of me and my drama. Crazy with a booze bottle….that was me.
When I created this life coaching and hypnotherapy business I was so excited because I wanted to help so many people with afflictions such as mine. Yet as I began to lay out my business plan I saw just how screwed up in life I was. Truly. I mean, just look at my list of specialties! How did I get this way? When did I loose my way in the world and end up with all of these problems? What kind of life plan did I lay out for myself before I came here because this lifetime has been a doozy. Maybe I am planning some kind of big final exit. Maybe this is my last time coming around and I want to go out with a bang!! Yeah that’s it! I’m so glad I finally have a chance to heal my life, and heal those memories. It’s ok, because if I didn’t go through them I wouldn’t be able to help others who are suffering.
So what is Love Addiction and how do you know if you have it? It’s being addicted to that intoxicated feeling you get when you meet someone new and exciting! It’s that rush that someone finds you interesting and you find them interesting. It can be a sexual attraction, and often Love and Sex Addiction goes hand in hand much like Love addiction and Co-dependency. Here is the best description I found from Love Addiction Treatment Center:
*“While the desire to love and be loved is perfectly normal, the intoxicating feeling of being “in love” can be addictive for some individuals. If you’ve ever been in love, you know how powerful it can be. Suddenly your world is completely turned upside down. You feel an excitement – an energy, if you will – that makes everything seem new and wonderful. Some people describe it as feeling like they were walking on air. It’s natural to want this euphoric feeling to last forever.
Of course, most people realize that the wonderful initial feeling of new love doesn’t (and can’t) last forever. In healthy long-term relationships, the initial love gradually gives way to a more mature love – one that is perhaps less intoxicating and euphoric, but ultimately much more fulfilling and stable. For those prone to love addiction, however, the loss of that initial euphoria is akin to the crash that drug addicts feel when their drug of choice wears off. They crave the “high” and begin the search for another fix. Love addicts are no different, which is why they often go from one relationship to the next once the initial high wears off.”
Do you think you have a Love Addiction with Co-Dependency issue?
- Do you fall in love easily and quickly?
- Do you think that you are nothing with out a partner?
- Do you base your self worth on the fact of having a partner or not?
- Do you get jealous and feel possessive easily?
- Do you find yourself dating anyone who asks you?
- Are you always looking for your next relationship?
- Do you sabotage your relationships just so you can start a new one?
- Do you search for high risk partners thinking your love can fix them?
- Do you stay in unhealthy relationships because you believe your love is enough for the both of you?
- Do you equate sex to love?
- If you have sex with someone do you now believe this is a relationship?
- Do you have sex with anyone who asks, thinking it is because they like/love you?
- Do you believe you are unlovable?
- Were you rejected early in life from your parents or caregivers?
- When you go on a date you immediately size the person up for marriage?
- Do you sacrifice friends and family for your partner?
- Partake in activities you know are dangerous just to make them happy? (drugs, alcohol, sex)
- You loose interest in your friends, activities, and job?
- Do your friends and family cringe every time you have a new “relationship”?
- Are you mentally and physically exhausted at the thought of leaving a bad relationship?
- Do you tolerate physical and verbal abuse because you think you deserve it?
If any of these symptoms ring true for you, you may be suffering from Love Addiction with Co-Dependency. Hypnotherapy and Coaching truly worked wonders for me by getting to the root of my problems. I had very low self esteem and self worth. It made such a difference in my second marriage. I was already on the road to healing when I met him but going through the training enabled me to shed the remaining parts of me that were not healthy. My second husband and I have been working very hard on our issues because we want a healthy, stable, and rewarding lifestyle!
Please visit my website at www.sacredcircleministry.com for a complete overview of services to see how we may be able to help you! You don’t have to live like this, it may be hard work to transform behaviors but it is so much more rewarding. Relationships are meant to be an additive or a compliment to who we are, not something to change us. However, in order to find someone to love us for exactly who we are, we have to be ready. By being ready means being healthy and leaving the other baggage behind. Until we change we will live the same pattern over and over wishing we will get better.