We are all born with a notion of permanence. The idea that things should go a certain way, and for the most part, they do. Over time, we experience things that challenge this. Situations we weren’t expecting or quick losses we are unprepared for. It is those experiences changing our mentality from the permanent to the temporary. And we realize people always leave.
When I got married, my husband and I were in our early 20s. I promised to grow old with him. That didn’t happen. Being widowed very early on in our marriage, the idea of temporary stung me deeply. I still have a hard time believing people aren’t going to leave me.
Adding insult to injury, the more times people exit your life when you weren’t prepared, the harder it is to put yourself out there and love again. I will be going along in my life with things going just as planned. That is when my mind kicks in to tell me “beware.” It is in the ordinary that I find extraordinary panic that nothing lasts forever and eventually people always leave.
The problem with living in the temporary is that you never feel settled or secure. Although pushing it off that others are bound to leave, the truth is, I leave long before they have the chance. Being only partly into anything for fear of being hurt, I am elusive at times, protective at others, and downright push my self-fulfilling prophecy agenda that people always leave.
What is a self-fulfilling prophecy?
A self-fulfilling prophecy is when we tell ourselves something enough times that we actually convince ourselves it’s real. I am very good at predicting negative and am always shocked when I am capable of making those fears come true. If you say to yourself that people always leave, you probably will set up a scenario to chase them away. [Read: Relationship anxiety: 20 mistakes you need to stop making]
I have a friend from high school that as everyone else was tying the knot, she found fault in every mate. Insisting that there was something wrong with every relationship she had. From the outside, I just never saw it. I was always shocked when she broke up her current relationship. It seemed to be going along fine and then it was over. What I began to see is she created drama to push the people in her life away out of some need to protect herself.
Do people always leave you? 20 ways you self-sabotage a relationship
If you believe people always leave, then it may be time for you to check the reasons why they leave. Examine if there is some self-fulfilling prophecy you have that’s pushing them away.
If you feel like people are going to leave you anyway, you may either not be putting yourself into your relationship in a realistic way, or you may be self-sabotaging your relationships to protect yourself from hurt. Do you do these 20 self-sabotaging things?
#1 Do you find fault in everyone you are with? If you find yourself constantly looking on the negative side and no one is ever good enough or what you need, you may have unrealistic ideas about what a relationship is. No one promised you it was going to be all roses, but they may not have said it would be as difficult as it is either.
Instead of always finding things wrong with the people you are with, reexamine what you look for in a mate and whether anyone ever lives up to your expectations. [Read: 14 unrealistic expectations that will ruin your love life]
#2 Do you generally feel like they don’t love you as much as you do them? When we fear someone leaving us, we often tend to feel as if we love them more. Overestimating your own love for someone is a way to push them away. If you believe that you are always the one doing more, then you are prepared for a time when they are gone. [Read: Feeling unloved? 6 reasons why and 10 ways to fix it]
#3 Do you find ways to get attention to feel attached, but it always backfires? When you constantly fear someone is going to leave, you find ways to gain their attention just to calm your fears. The problem, the more you pull at them, the more they will push away. Leading to a constant repulsion, catch situation.
You can’t feel attached to someone if you are always afraid to get close to them. You should feel settled in yourself enough to stand on your own two feet and not need them as an extension of yourself.
#4 Are you in constant fear that they will leave? Never feeling secure or settled is a horrible way to live. If you envision them leaving you every time they walk out the door, you’re probably not fun to be around. People sense your neediness and react to it with the need to push you away to gain some space and perspective. There is nothing you can do if they want to leave, so you have to stop thinking you control it.
We are not in control of our own fate or destiny and trying to constantly predict the future and hold onto things only exhausts you. And makes you no fun to be with. [Read: 9 ways to overcome the fear of losing someone you love]
#5 Do you find reasons that you shouldn’t be together? Are you constantly finding reasons why you shouldn’t be together? If you give them reason upon reason why you aren’t good for each other, you do the exact opposite of what you want. Convincing them you aren’t meant to be together is only going to bring you the result that you fear the most.
#6 Do you do things that you know will hurt them or make them mad? Again, if the only way you feel attached to someone is to up emotions, then you are pushing them away. Hurting them isn’t going to make you feel any better or make them want to stay with you. It is only going to make them not want to be around you, further perpetuating the cycle.
#7 Do you always feel unsettled and insecure? Being afraid that someone is going to leave is a horrible feeling making you feel unsettled and take away a part of who you are. If all you think about is how to keep someone or hoping they won’t leave, there isn’t any room in the relationship to just be yourself. [Read: Insecurity in a relationship – how to get over it]
#8 Who is initiating the fights most of the time? If you initiate all your fights, either you are self-sabotaging or are with someone who is not made for you. Either way, you are going to be without them. Sometimes, it is better to think something but not react. Instead of acting out of emotions like fear, anxiety, or sadness, take the time to cool off and look at the situation with reason and a rational head. That way you avoid the fight cycle you have likely gotten yourself into.
#9 Do you feel like you have to distance yourself to protect yourself? If the only way you don’t feel desperate and sad is by being without someone, they are either not good for you, or you are sabotaging yourself. Someone you are with should make you feel loved and supported. Whether you aren’t capable of feeling that way with just that one person or at all, it is driving a wedge in your current relationship.
#10 In general, is your future bright or full of pessimism? No one wants to be with someone who can only see the bad in a situation. If you are someone full of negativity and believe that people always leave, then you are going to be met with the same kind of negativity. It is hard to carry on a relationship with someone when they are always looking for their out. You may think it is the person you are with, but maybe you are the one who is looking for the open door. [Read: Is your negative thinking ruining your life?]
#11 When you do break up, do you think things like “I knew it wouldn’t work”? Again, a relationship is only as positive as the perspective you have about it. If you constantly feel like it is doomed to fail, trust me, it will fail. What do you have to lose by thinking everything is sunny and roses? If it is meant to end, it is going to whether you have tried to prepare yourself or not. Preparing yourself only strips the joy out of the moments you could have.
#12 Do you have experiences in your past that were very traumatic? Our experiences shape our perspective and our future. If your experiences have reinforced the idea that people always leave, it would be a lot harder to shake off the idea. But then again, it is important that you try to separate past events from future ones.
If you constantly expect things to go as they have in the past, then you will get the result you believe is coming. We all have things in our past, but only you can choose to carry them or leave them behind. [Read: 7 reasons why playing victim makes your life worse]
#13 Do you overcompensate in your relationship out of fear of loss? Being overly nice or doing things for the person you are with only leaves you feeling shitty and less loved. The theory of relationship equity is that you are only as happy with someone as you feel equitable to them. That means if you constantly feel as if you are doing everything, it is going to lead to a state of unhappiness. Stop overcompensating. If they are going to leave, they will do so whether you do everything right or not.
#14 Do you need constant affirmation that they love you and aren’t going to leave? You can ask someone to tell you they love you all the time, but if you aren’t willing to accept them at their word, then they are empty words. Stop looking for affirmation and find it within yourself to accept love from them.
#15 Does your fear cause you to smother them? Do you panic every time they walk out the door? You can’t control what the future is going to bring. Trying to control others only leaves you a nervous twit and someone that you don’t want to be. And someone they don’t want to be with. Stop smothering them and realize if it is going to happen, you have to let it naturally unfold. [Read: How to love someone without smothering them]
#16 Are you always waiting for them to show signs for you to run? Your expectations shape the way you perceive things. If you think they are going to leave and are always looking for signs, then you are going to find them whether they are there or not. Try to think positively and banish the thought that people always leave, and feel settled that they love you and aren’t going to ever leave. If they do, enjoy the time you have with them before they make their exit.
#17 Do you try to end it again and again? Sometimes, we try to push people away or leave a relationship before someone can leave and hurt us. The problem is eventually they will get tired of you leaving. You’re not only hurting yourself by constantly trying to end it; but you are also breaking the confidence and security that they have in you too. That isn’t fair to them. [Read: How to beat the debilitating, awful fear of rejection]
#18 Do you feel a constant push and pull? The harder you try to hold onto things, the harder they try to push you away. If you hold on too tight, you are going to lose them, that is for sure.
#19 How do you talk about your relationship and significant other? Think about how you talk about your boyfriend or spouse. Do you talk about them favorably or rip them apart? Sometimes we try to protect ourselves and our image by making someone look not worthy of us. The problem is that studies have concluded the thing that most determines a good relationship is the positivity that each has for the other. Cutting them down is undermining not only them but your relationship too. Try talking positively and you will be surprised how things will change.
#20 Are you always looking for your “out”? Are you emotionally always looking for the exit door because you’re convinced that people always leave? If you expect someone to leave a relationship, you may have one foot out the door already. That is leaving your significant other feeling insecure and on shaky ground. If you are both unsure about the security of your relationship, it is hard to have a trusting and loving future.
[Read: 18 emotions you just shouldn’t feel in a healthy relationship]
When we allow our past to shape our future, we may be creating the very thing we fear most. As hard as it is, stop worrying about the person you love leaving and start to enjoy the time you have with them. You can’t control the future, but you can control your perception of the here and now.
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A writer isn’t born, but created out of experiences. No lack of subject matter, my life reads more like fiction than anything that could have been imagined...
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