www.voicelessness.com
www.voicelessness.com
Why Do Some People Choose One Bad Relationship After Another?
Copyright 2009 by Richard A. Grossman, Ph.D.    All Rights reserved    E-Mail: ragrossman@voicelessness.com
"hear" and experience them, for only then do they have value, "place," and a sense of importance. However, not just any audience will do.   The observer and critic must be important and powerful, or else they will hold no sway in the world.  Who are the most important and powerful people to a child?  Parents.  Who must a person pick as audience to help rebuild the self?  People as powerful as parents.  Who, typically, is more than willing to play the role of power broker in a relationship, doling out "voice" only insofar as it suits him/her?  A narcissist, "voice hog," or otherwise oblivious and neglectful person. 

And so it goes.  The person goes in the relationship with the hope or dream of establishing their place with a narcissistic partner, only to find themselves emotionally battered once again.   These are not "oedipal" choices--people are not choosing their father or mother.  They are picking people they perceive powerful enough to validate their existence. 

But why doesn't a person leave when they realize they are in yet another self-destructive relationship?  Unfortunately, on occasion  things go well with a narcissistic partner--particularly after a blowout fight.  A narcissist is often expert in yielding just enough "voice" to keep his or her victim from leaving.  They grant a place in their world, if only for a day or two.  The wish that this change is permanent sustains the voiceless person until the relationship regresses back to its usual pattern.

Giving up a destructive relationship is difficult.  The brief moments of validation are cherished, and the person who finally leaves must relinquish the hope of "earning" more.  When the person finally breaks free they are faced with an immediate and lasting feeling of emptiness and self-blame that makes them question their decision.
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Why Do Some People Choose One Bad Relationship After Another?
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