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What Are Self Sabotaging Relationships? Definition, Signs, Causes, Impacts, and everything Else

What Are Self Sabotaging Relationships? Definition, Signs, Causes, Impacts, and everything Else

Updated on Oct 25, 2022

Reviewed by Julianne Cantarella, MSW, LSW , Certified Relationship Coach

Self Sabotaging Relationships - Definition, Signs, Causes, and More

Curious about self sabotaging relationships? Wondering why all your relationships end on the same note? Thinking about why you get bored of your romantic partners so fast?

Well, I’m happy that you finally expressed your concerns about this…. And acknowledging that you’re suffering from such issues. 

Don’t worry… you’ll soon know everything you need to know to address this issue.

Moreover, such issues can harm your professional, social, and personal life in the long run… because you’re far from having any kind of healthy relationship.

Can’t wait anymore? Let’s quench your curiosity here…

What is self sabotaging relationships?

Destroying your relationship out of doubt, insecurities, or other deep-rooted issues before making things official or serious is known as self-sabotaging relationships.

When you self-destruct your relationship even when there’s no fault of your partner, that’s when you’re self-sabotaging a relationship.

Your pessimistic thoughts even without trying to make the arrangement work are your self-sabotaging behavior which leads to self-sabotaging relationships.

People who engage in self-sabotaging relationships bond with their partners and enjoy their time together as long as there’s no serious discussion.

The moment a deep relationship conversation begins, they back off.

In your self-sabotaging relationships, you might make excuses to put unhealthy space between you two, fight, get jealous, or exhibit controlling behaviors until your partner gives up on the relationship.

These are some of the regular self-sabotaging behaviors in relationships.

Also, you get the excuse that “things didn’t work” or “we strayed apart” because your partner brings up the topic of splitting.

According to Psychologist Raquel Peel, self-sabotage is responsible for most failed relationships. 

To understand better, here are some…

Self sabotaging relationships examples

Self-sabotaging behaviors are visible outside relationships too, so don’t ask Why do I self-sabotage relationships? Ask Why do I self-sabotage everything?

And let’s zoom onto a few instances when you do….

1. Whenever a romantic partner asks to meet their parents, you think about how to refuse the meetings.

2. When everything is going fine in your relationship, you brace for something bad to happen and lose the moment of joy.

3. If a coworker praises you for your efforts, you think they have ulterior motives. Your coworkers feel disrespected when you do so and everyone distances from you.

4. You only think about yourself…. you’re the most important one to yourself. Even when your partner needs you, you’d rather have your beauty sleep.

5. You magnify even the smallest issues. When your partner makes an appointment with their friends, you’ll overthink that they don’t like you or they want to cheat on you.

If you’re wondering the causes behind self-sabotaging relationships, let’s find out…  

Why do people self sabotage relationships?

Self-sabotaging behaviors in relationships might be a result of your childhood trauma, fear of intimacy, fear of abandonment, or some other deep-rooted mental issue.

You might have commitment issues, but most times, there are deep-rooted issues that need clinical attention. 

Let’s quickly hunt your causes here…

1. You fear showing vulnerabilities

Perhaps something from your childhood haunts you. You possibly built an intimate bond with your caregiver, but in return, they abused you.

The childhood experiences still linger in your mind and result in your fear of intimacy. You know the moment you show your vulnerabilities, they’ll know your weaknesses and hurt you.

You fear intimate relationships because of childhood trauma to the point that even destroying a relationship feels better than building a serious one.

2. You fear being left behind

If your caregiver abandoned you, then deep inside you suffer from a fear of abandonment and direly seek intimacy.

However, your past experiences always haunt you and remind you of the pain.

Just like your caregiver, your partner will also leave you behind….  These kinds of thoughts linger in your mind so you push them away as a safety measure. You might have anxious attachment styles and fear of abandonment.

Whenever your partners bring up conversations of a serious relationship, you lose interest in the relationship because the past might repeat itself.

Or, you simply feel you can’t trust people in your life and so, destroy your relationships

3. You fear losing your identity

Do you think being in a relationship will consume your individuality or pry on your independence? Then you might have a fear of engulfment.

You like your relationships fun and casual, and hate it when your partners talk about taking the next step.

You think the moment you make them an important part of your life; you’ll lose the reins of your life.

You also fear that they’ll depend on you and make your life painful. Further, if you like your partner quite a lot… you’ll give in to their desires easily and lose yourself.

4. You think you don’t deserve it

If you think that you’re not worthy of your perfect partner, you might push them away towards a better future. In fact, if they stick around, it makes you question things.

You just know they’ll leave you behind someday so why not now? You have low self-worth and self-confidence and think that you’re not good enough for them.

You feel that they’ll get bored and leave you, so pushing them will save you from the pain of rejection and sabotage the relationship… This is a sign of intense fear of rejection.

5. You wanna keep things interesting

Perhaps, you don’t know how to entertain your partner… so you choose drama.

Since you aren’t changing yourself, you change the circumstances in the relationship so that your partner sticks around longer, has you in their mind, and shows you affection.

You want to keep the relationship interesting and attractive for your partner so neither of you gets bored.

You don’t mind whether the situations are good or bad… you just want something to happen all the time and surprise them.

Your intentions usually bring negative attention and lead to self-sabotaging the relationship.

6. You don’t want anything serious

If you only want to date casually and not settle down, that might be a simple reason behind your self-sabotaging relationships.

Sometimes there might not be any deep-rooted meaning behind your relationship patterns.

Instead, you want to have flings without any attachment and enjoy your life for the time being.

Perhaps you haven’t realized what you want yet and your partner seeking exclusivity or a serious relationship turns you off.

For such cases, it’s better to think through your intentions and come clean about what you want in your relationships.

7. You experienced a bad relationship

Perhaps you suffered a lot in your past relationships. You were probably serious in your last relationship, but in return, your ex hurt you deeply.

You feel that serious relationships aren’t worth the try because of the relationship traumas. So, you avoid serious or strong relationships to save yourself from more pain.

You remember the toxicity or abuse in your last relationship when things got serious…

Now you believe abuse happens in serious relationships only. So, when your partner wants to take things to a serious level, you sign out.

8. Your caregiver taught you wrong

Sometimes caregivers don’t express enough love and care to their children to teach them self-sufficiency.

Or, they don’t pay enough attention to their child because of their lifestyle or underlying mental issues.

Such caregivers might also insult the child for being clingy, needy, or selfish, which scars them. Children brought up in such dynamics believe that they mustn’t depend or attach to anyone. 

These results in avoidant attachment styles which make you avoid commitment or show disinterest in deep relationship conversations.

9. It’s too good to be true

Sometimes your instincts warn about the wrong signals even before you know what’s actually wrong with it. Perhaps you began the relationship to discard your loneliness and not out of pure love.

When your partner asks to take the next step, your instincts signal that everything will go wrong if you step forward.

Despite your love for the other person, you surrender to your instincts’ because you don’t want to get trapped again.

You end your relationships subconsciously due to the self-fulfilling prophecy you anticipate.

10. You can’t take rejection

Perhaps a rejection in a past relationship instilled a fear of rejection in you.

It doesn’t stop you from falling in love, dating, or having fun with a partner, but you feel if things move on from the fun side to the serious side, it’ll end at a similar note.

Perhaps you still remember the shame, anger, heartache, and anguish from the rejection.

Your ex probably made you feel miserable to dream about a serious relationship and you can’t bear the same once more.

So, whenever things get too serious, you emotionally back off from your relationship or exhibit self-sabotaging behaviors in your relationship.

Now that you know the causes, let’s find out about…

Impact of self sabotaging relationships

Initially, it seems that sabotaging casual relationships isn’t a big deal… After all, you feel that you haven’t met your special person yet.

However, there’s no dead-set way to know your soulmate, so how are you so sure?

That’s not all, learn how sabotaging your relationships is slowly hurting you…

1. You lose relationships

Self-sabotaging behaviors hurt all kinds of relationships in your life. You not only lose any romantic connection from your life, but also the social and familial ones.

You can’t stick to any commitments in your life.

It might also worsen your professional relationships because of your inability to stay in healthy relationships. You push away everyone from your life because of your self-sabotaging thoughts.

2. You become too lonely

When you destroy all kinds of relationships in your life, turn everyone’s goodwill away… people including your romantic partners, friends, and family will eventually give up on building healthy relationships with you.

You become the cause of isolation in your life and suffer from loneliness. Despite knowing that you led yourself to this situation, you still hope someone will reach out.

You’re the victim of the circumstances you build for yourself. It’s like you throw away the food from your house and suffer from hunger hoping the food will come to you.

3. You can’t build a family

Though you sabotage relationships, you may still yearn for a loving family. You hope that your romantic relationships lasted, that you had the courage to build a stronger connection with your romantic partner.

You wish to have children, a room full of laughter and happiness like they show in movies.

However, your self-sabotaging behaviors destroy good relationships and might leave you longing for the impossible.

4. You’ll never learn intimacy

Since you always sabotage relationships even before strengthening your bond… you don’t understand the definition of a romantic or any kind of intimacy in your life.

So, even if you want to create a bond sometime later in the future, you won’t know how to… you’ll always hold back from intimate bonds because that’s what you always did and you feel safe and comfortable that way.

You might hold back because you fear that attaching to them might mess with your life.

5. It impacts your potential

As the doubts always overpower your relationships, it soon seeps into all aspects of your life. You lose confidence and feel pessimistic about everything in your life.

You hesitate about your life goals, question your abilities, replay your past failures about relationships or life, and second-guess yourself.

Meanwhile, you let all the opportunities in life pass and lose all chances of being happy and successful in your professional or personal life.

Wondering if you did anything similar, know from these…

Signs of self sabotaging relationships

You might intentionally or unintentionally sabotage your relationship. You might find that some of the signs were your natural reactions to some relationship issues. 

Perhaps you didn’t mean anything deeper when you didn’t go to meet your partner’s friends. In reality, your subconscious mind led you towards the “easiest” way out of the situation and you’re unaware. 

Let’s find out some more signs that imply you push away your partner…

1. You retreat before any pain

Perhaps many sad relationship series or your experiences led you to make a limit in your relationship. You feel that crossing the limit will take your relationship from a happy to painful page.

Possibly, you never crossed that limit to check if it’s really painful… because in your mind it is and you can’t bear it.

You begin relationships without much thought but end them to avoid pain with excuses like they aren’t the one.

If you notice a similar pattern of fear of pain in relationships, that’s your sign of self-sabotage.

2. You want a fairy-tale relationship

Who is your dream partner in your mind?

For women, someone strong, who saves the damsel in distress, and fights the bad people?

For men, someone frail and yielding?

Your expectations might not be similar, but expecting too much prevents you from building good relationships. You’ll never settle down if you look for someone with a list of traits in your hand.

You’re more in love with a fantasy character than your real-life partner, and that’s a kind of obsession that can destroy your relationships. Keep realistic expectations because everyone has flaws.

3. Your self-critic is too loud

Everyone has a critic inside them… it’s part of growing up. Your inner critic always tells you to have backup plans lest something goes wrong, and that’s good… it does help in dire times.

However, sometimes this inner critic might convince you that you don’t deserve this and will lose everything.

Everyone feels doubtful about their relationships and some people give up because of the doubts.

If you always look at the downside of your relationship and retreat thinking there’s no meaning, that’s another sign you self-sabotage your relationships.

4. You fight to win

When you fight with your partner, what’s on your mind? Do you want to find the best for your relationship or do you want to prove yourself right?

If you feel an urge to win every argument, that’s another sign of self-sabotage.

A healthy relationship needs both partners to communicate about the relationship issues rationally and not led by ego.

Ego doesn’t have a place in loving relationships. Sometimes you need to adjust to make things work for the better.

5. Your priorities are all over the place

Your partner planned a date this weekend, your best friend also planned a weekend outing but that’s a regular thing. Which one do you choose?

If you give more priority to your scheduled plans over your partner’s plans ALL THE TIME… that’s another sign of destroying relationships.

Imagine yourself in your partner’s shoes… would you like it if your partner prioritizes their friends or family over you… would you like it?

No right.

6. Your word is the last word

In a committed relationship, most times couples don’t have the same tastes. But that doesn’t limit them from a loving relationship.

Instead, they learn new things from each other which makes everything exciting.

However, if you always ask your partner to yield to your demands and never consider their feelings or wishes, that’s another sign of self-sabotaging your relationship.

You both are unique, and since you’re in love, accept them wholeheartedly.

7. There are meaningless fights

Are you always picking fights over your partner? Whether it’s how they jumbled up the books on the shelves, or how they spilled water while cooking?

No matter what… you have this urge to constantly fight your partner. Then you’re really trying to push your partner away.

You want them to feel disgusted and leave your life. You blame them in your mind for demanding more and this is your way to punish them.

Also, imposing all the blame on your partner this way sabotages your relationships.

8. You lock them out

When you guys have disagreements, do you take up an unhealthy amount of space and minimize communication? That’s a sign of stonewalling… and a subconscious attempt at destroying your relationship.

You avoid any kind of intimacy whenever you’re mad. This only hurts your relationship and you tend to push your partner away.

9. The green in them appeals to you

Do you feel their jealous side is cute? That’s fine, but do you flirt with others or someone who crushes on you to trigger jealousy in them? Why do you do that?

If you think that it’s a way to see their cute side, you’re wrong… you only wish to sabotage the relationship. Seeing them flustered and thinking it’s cute is a baseless excuse.

10. You cheat unnecessarily

The best (or worst) way to sabotage a romantic relationship was always infidelity. You possibly didn’t need to cheat… you didn’t find the other person attractive.

It was an impulsive decision to push your partner’s buttons. You want to agitate them enough to feel hurt and leave.

Or, you were afraid of being cheated by your partner… so instead of getting hurt, you hurt them yourself and find your desired result – ruined relationship.

11. Insult is the key

Another sign you’re sabotaging your relationship is hurting your partner’s feelings. You demean them, laugh at them publicly and make them feel embarrassed and inadequate about themselves.

This is a toxic relationship dynamic that consumes the soul of the victim. You show them that you deserve much better than them and they must be happy that you did them the favor of dating them.

12. You always have excuses

The next sign is that you’re guilty about making petty or bizarre excuses to break up. You both know that the excuse is baseless and you’re making up stories.

While you try to bail out from the relationship with excuses, your partner stops making any efforts because they know where it’s going.

They know you don’t want them anymore, so what’s the point of trying?

13. You call the shots

Do you practice unhealthy power play in your relationship? Do you always play hot and cold with your partner that you’re the boss in the relationship?

If you always do something that makes them feel inferior to you, that’s another alarming sign you sabotage your relationships.

You make your partners continuously feel insecure about their stand in the relationship and force control over them.

14. You prove them crazy

Gaslighting is another toxic dynamic where you turn the tables on your partner, play mind games, and convince them it’s all in their head, or they’re responsible for everything.

If you remember doing this, you’re consciously sabotaging your relationship. You can’t deny your actions… you want your partner to run for the hills.

15. You’re a serial dater

Did you ever reach the long-term relationship stage? No? If you’re always dating, and there’s never no progress from this phase, something’s off with you.

Possibly, whenever your partners ask you to make things more serious, you end the relationship yourself. Then you date someone new and sabotage the relationship before things get official.

16. Family introductions are troublesome

Every time your partner brings up meeting friends and family, does it get under your skin? Perhaps, they even planned a day for meeting loved ones and you wait until the last moment to bail out?

If you think it was inevitable because of work or other important engagements, then you’re lying to yourself. You’re damaging the relationship with your actions.

17. You’re paranoid

Constantly feel you’ll lose your partner? Feeling jealous about your partner going out on a friends’ outing? This is a sign of trust issues and paranoia.

If you smother your partner too much with your relationship, they will hate your controlling nature and feel helpless in the relationship.

Your partner will secretly wish to leave you until they can successfully.

Seeking therapy might help with your paranoia and save your relationship.

18. You avoid emotional intimacy

Do you hate the idea of emotional bonding? Feel too vulnerable and fear the other person will use your weaknesses against you?

Or, do you feel only weaklings’ resort to emotional bonds?

When you refuse emotional intimacy to your partner, you hurt them and ask for the inevitable. You distance yourself emotionally and that’s a relationship sabotaging element.

19. They’re too flawed

Do you focus on what your partners don’t have? Maybe they have a habit of waking up early and exercising and you utterly hate noise in the early morning.

Well, when you want a way out of a relationship, everything about them seems like a flaw… even if they want to sneeze or cough, it’s disgusting and you can’t stay with them.

If you habitually magnify flaws, you’re sabotaging your relationship… probably intentionally.

20. You sell yourself short

Sometimes insecurities make you take crazy steps in life. For instance, you don’t feel anybody will ever fall for you, so you grab onto an unworthy person’s hand because you better do, else regret this lifetime opportunity.

Believing that you don’t deserve better is a self-fulfilling prophecy. The more you imagine you aren’t worth it, the less you see the chances of a brighter future.

But you can’t compromise with the wrong person for too long… Can you?

21. You’re never yourself

Do you try to always morph into your partner’s type in your relationships? Perhaps, your partner likes short hair, so you chop your luscious locks for them.

Or, they like muscular bodies, so you train excessively and ditch your favorite food?

Well, aren’t you torturing yourself in the name of making them happy?

In the end, you’ll give up being someone you aren’t and disappoint both of you with the incompatibility and sabotage the relationship.

22. You flee from conflicts

How many issues did you successfully and unsuccessfully solve in your current or latest relationship?

If it’s none… then it’s a sign that you avoid conflicts. Perhaps you think not tending to the differences or sacrificing your happiness will make your partner happy?

Well, unnecessary sacrifices in your relationship prevent the potential growth of a relationship and break your romantic connection… another way of sabotaging your relationship.

23. You habitually second-guess

Everything’s alright in your relationship, you’re happily in love and things can’t get any better… Do you think your happiness won’t last, or think that your partner is pretending to hide something?

There’s your self-fulfilling prophecy… Your doubts make you magnify any small issue into a huge one. You disbelieve your partner and emphasize these subtle feelings.

You push away your partner and slowly sabotage the relationship… with overthinking.

24. You behave stalker-ish

Do you fear your partner abandoning you? How do you know that they’re not cheating on you?

If you always call or text them to know about their whereabouts or send pictures instantly, you show controlling behaviors and don’t allow them privacy.

Your partner feels restrained and that makes them try to break out even more. In the end, your behavior hurts your relationship or even destroys it.

25. Your insecurities blind you

Do you feel inadequate? That you’re not fit and attractive as other people, or you’re not as sufficient as others?

Do you always keep clinging to your partner for reassurance?

When you’re insecure about yourself, you’ll question your partner’s intentions for no reason… you might sabotage your relationships based on negative thoughts.

Or, you might force your partner to break up with the continuous nagging.

26. You attract emotionally unavailable people

Do you find mysterious and aloof people cool? Want to unravel the heavy air around them like it’s a challenge? Then you get attracted to the wrong kind of people for the wrong reasons.

You build your relationships with someone you can’t deal with in the long run. Choosing an emotionally unavailable partner further increases your odds of sabotaging your relationship.

Well, there’s a chance that the lack of commitment with emotionally unavailable partners attracted you…. and that’s why you’re in this relationship.

27. Too much comparison

Your partner is not the same as your friend’s partner. Your friend’s partner gets them fancy gifts… you like it, wish you had it, and that’s fine.

The problem begins when you compare your partner with others, tell them to do something you saw in other relationships. Asking your partner to change themselves is an insult.

If you always feel dissatisfied and ask your partner to do something like others, you’re sabotaging it.

28. Your present pays for your past

Someone betrayed you in the past, they made you eat dirt and you were helpless back then. Do you still project the feelings of the past in your current relationships?

If you feel that everyone’s the same so you better betray your partner before the past repeats itself… that’s another self-sabotaging dynamic.

29. Their achievement hurts you

Achieving professional goals is a big thing for both of you… but if you miss your partner’s grand promotion just because you couldn’t grab yours… that’s absolutely unhealthy.

However, sometimes jealousy creeps into your relationship… but don’t feel ashamed at that point, communicate and admit to it.

However, if you keep feeling jealous of your partner instead of rejoicing for them, you’re sabotaging the relationship.

30. Your anxiety rubbed off on them

It’s alright if you feel anxious about your partner’s safety, and it’s even better that you remind them to be wary of creeps.

But when they reassure you and you still can’t help but keep capitalizing on your negative thoughts… that’s when you go wrong.

Imagine your partner going out on a friend’s trip while you’re continuously nagging them about how you’re worried about their safety… that’s going to stick in their mind throughout the trip and stop them from enjoying it.

Soon your partner will understand that you’re the reason behind their anxiety… and that’s the story of your sabotaged relationship.

31. You hold on to grudges

Mistakes happen in relationships, so relationship coaches suggest resolving the issue soon.

But if you say you forgave them but hold on to grudges, and mention your partner’s past mistakes during fights… that damages the relationship.

Instead of tending to the matter, you let the issue grow, take a bigger form, and destroy your relationship from within.

32. You deny the exclusivity

When your partner asked to be exclusive and leave behind the ethical non-monogamous (ENM) or casual dating lifestyle, how did you feel?

Even if you didn’t want to change the current lifestyle, did you tell them why?

Even if you practice ENM when your partner asks you to change, that’s the moment it’s not consensual anymore. Consent isn’t a one-time thing in a relationship.

If they no longer consent to ENM, but you ignore or deny the conversation, that’s another red flag of self-sabotaging your relationship.

33. Your relationship is out of focus

Your relationship isn’t the only important thing in your life. You have friends, family, work, and even hobbies. However, you need a balance to satisfy all sides of your life.

If you never have time for your relationship… even if it’s because of the kids, sick parents, or even your job, you’re damaging the relationship.

Take care of the important parts of your life, but never forget about the real deal.

34. You gave up on sex

If you and your partner abstain from sex mutually, I’ve nothing against you. The issue begins when you don’t communicate about your abstinence, or consider their feelings about it.

Possibly your partner still expects you to return to your sexual routine once you feel rejuvenated.

But with time passing and without any action, they will doubt your intentions… or even seek someone else for their satisfaction.

Sex is an important part of romantic relationships… you can’t make a decision about it alone.

35. You follow a scoreboard

If you keep scores of your partner’s faults and try to get back at them equally for everything, that’s an alarming sign.

You treat your partner like a rival instead of a teammate. If it’s you vs. your partner, instead of you two vs. the world, you’re slowly killing your relationship in petty ways.

Wanna change for the better? I got you! Learn…

How to stop self sabotaging relationships?

Whether you naturally self-sabotage relationships or do it knowingly…. Whether you do it alone or your partner has similar habits, you can fix it and build a healthy relationship if you follow a few steps.

Glad that you’re curious, let’s get ready to visit long-term relationships-town…

1. Identify the attachment styles

Learn your attachment styles to understand the deeper reasons behind the way you both react.

Perhaps, you and your partner both matched with some of the signs, so it’s important to know how your mind works instead of giving in to impulses.

If you become aware of your issues in relationships, you’ll become more careful and honest when you speak to each other… instead of resorting to demeaning or hurtful remarks which leads to self-sabotaging relationships.

2. Communicate, honestly!

Don’t suppress the relationship issues, communicate openly about what disturbs you or your needs & desires from the relationship. Never suppress your feelings about relationship issues.

Don’t keep conflicts unresolved or else they’ll blow out of proportion later. If you feel you don’t get enough affection or time… talk.

Talking respectfully and calmly about what bothers you can save you from self-sabotaging relationships.

3. Be responsible

You gotta overcome the denial if you want to sustain a relationship. When a relationship fails, both parties are responsible in some way.

Instead of blaming it all on yourself, handle the situation maturely.

You can be wrong, you can hurt your partner, and taking responsibility for what you did isn’t bad, though the opposite is cowardly.

Accept the fact that something went wrong for you and think about dealing instead of hiding it.

4. Hunt the triggers

You might suffer from some fear of abandonment, engulfment, or anything else. However, every fear has a trigger, so find out what triggers it in you or your partner.

Is it some kind of action? It might also be a word, location, or even smell. After knowing the trigger, you can either ignore it or tend to it heads on.

5. Unlearn the grudge

If your self-sabotage behavior in relationships has a connection with childhood trauma, then you still hold a grudge against a caregiver.

Perhaps they ignored you, didn’t shower enough love, or called you selfish for asking for attention. Whatever be the case, you’re hurting… and you need to forgive them and move on.

If not, you’re denying yourself the possible love from other relationships. Your grudge on the past will not help your present… so let go of the past.

6. Check in!

There are unexpected times when you fear the end of the relationship… even though nothing’s wrong. This is why it’s important to check in together about your feelings for the relationship periodically.

Check-ins don’t need to be anything serious, rather indulge in a light and honest conversation about your feelings.

Whether something bothers you or makes you happy in the relationship, be candid.

Communicating even without a reason can help you strengthen your bonds.

7. Fall in love with yourself

People who self-sabotage their relationships are prey to insecurities. It’s time to heal yourself and hush your inner critic.

If your guts say that nobody will or can love you, then prove it wrong – love yourself before expecting it from others. Do whatever floats your boat… it can be journaling, painting, singing, or even cooking.

Walk or jog outdoors to refresh yourself, invest as much time as for your relationship. Remember that you deserve it.

8. Be upfront

Instead of criticizing your partner, tell him what’s actually wrong. Perhaps your partner chews with their mouth open, instead of saying “Ewww gross!” tell them it’s bad manners and they mustn’t.

If your partner criticizes you, instead of feeling self-conscious and waiting to hit their self-esteem, confront them about what’s wrong.

Change your habits of keeping scores and competing.

9. Fall in love before you date

Never date before you’re truly in love. This will eventually lead to a toxic relationship.

Say, you don’t get anyone better, so what? Isn’t it better than destroying two lives or wasting two people’s time? Find out what each of you expects from the relationship.

Make your intentions clear before anything else.

10. Know your worth

You might not have a good life now, but you will soon… better focus on building yourself if you don’t know about your worth.

Make yourself so desirable that your partner won’t ever think of ditching you.

When you become and believe you’re worthy of love, you’ll not think about your partner leaving you… so, you won’t self-sabotage your relationship.

Become someone who you can’t bear to leave.

However, you can also consider seeking help, so let’s know…

When should you seek professional help?

Seek therapists if you exhibit self-sabotaging behaviors when you’re not in a long-term relationship, or couples’ therapy if you’re in a long-term one.

Consult professional help when you can’t find the causes of your self-sabotaging behaviors and want to learn better ways to handle your relationship.

Seek a clinical psychologist if you don’t want a long-term relationship yet… however, you related with some self-sabotaging behaviors.

Find out ways to process your past traumas to build healthy relationships in the future.


Seek couples counseling if you’re in a long-term relationship and suddenly showing some self-sabotaging behaviors in your relationship. Learn to deal with your triggers and issues together.

A word from ThePleasantRelationship

Don’t drown in self-doubt or self-blame after knowing what’s the issue… I hope you understand that it’s normal to suffer from old wounds, and you seek help from your partner. 

There’s nothing to feel ashamed about your situation. Begin with transparent honesty with your partner and your specialist.

If you don’t sabotage relationships intentionally, there’s hope to have a loving relationship soon. 

Though not easy, accept your vulnerabilities… and if you won’t share it with your partner, then who?

Also, if someone leaves you after learning your vulnerabilities, know that it’s a good thing… Now, you can restart a relationship with someone who truly loves you.