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Jude's avatar

When I get too close to someone (emotionally speaking), sometimes I sabotage things because I am afraid of getting hurt. Does anyone else do this?

Asked by Jude (32112points) October 5th, 2010

Why the hell do I do this??? I need to stop doing this…

Everything is fine with the S/O, but, now I feel this need to push the person away. I don’t want to do this as this is a great relationship and I know that she loves me like you wouldn’t believe..

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34 Answers

iamthemob's avatar

I’m pretty sure everyone does this to some extent.

Do you date men? I ask because if so, they’re pretty one dimensional (a lot of the time) when it comes to communication in a relationship. So if you’re afraid that this is happening, try to bring it up with him. Let him know so he can tell you when you’re doing this. (if possible.)

Blackberry's avatar

I don’t do it, but I have done it and I understand why. These things happen for a reason, you have obviously been hurt in the past and don’t want it to happen again. For example, I had a bad experience with marriage, so of course I feel like I’m not going to do it again. No one wants to make the same mistake twice.

Jude's avatar

@iamthemob no, I date women. And, it’s all in my head. She has done nothing to show me that she doesn’t love me/nor is not interested in us. Actually, she shows me that she loves me all of the time.

I have been hurt in the past, yes. And, I’ve suffered great loss.

tragiclikebowie's avatar

I have done it. Even if someone shows the slightest interest in me, I skirt the issue and pull far, far away. Other times I go full steam ahead. I don’t know what triggers either reaction in me or whether it’s completely random. When I’m already in a relationship though, I don’t think I do it, but I may to an extent.

iamthemob's avatar


I would never say anything (well, most things) are “all in your head.” Maybe most of it is. I always find it’s best to just get it out of there. SAY what your feeling, say how you’re interpreting things, and admit when you think you’re reacting irrationally.

Being scared of being hurt makes perfect sense, especially if you’ve been hurt already. So stop beating yourself up. Self-preservation is the most natural instinct.

Your_Majesty's avatar

I know some of my friends who love to do this behavior. I think more or less there’s a factor of insecurity or dominance of that particular person who tend to do such thing.

I, myself will also do that if other people treat me like that. I will only do that to protect my ‘space’ and to prevent one’s selfish monopoly of certain subject.

CMaz's avatar

Yes… And no.

Adirondackwannabe's avatar

@mama_cakes Pain is our self preservation strategy, as someone else mentioned. It’s what tells us to be careful, so the instinct to keep your distance or maybe be a little cautious with your feelings is natural. That kind of pain is pretty rough. You also mentioned in the CAK thread and in a few others you’re going through a particularly rough stretch. Are you feeling a little less able to deal with the pain of being hurt right now and pushing her away because of that?

Jude's avatar

“Are you feeling a little less able to deal with the pain of being hurt right now and pushing her away because of that?”

I haven’t done anything to push her away, but, I have thought about. I won’t, though. I think that you’re right on the money as far as being a little less able to deal with pain. It would be hard to handle (at this time). I need to change my ways of thinking..

lucillelucillelucille's avatar

No.I’d just take my chances.
Go ahead,make my day, was always my attitude.

ANef_is_Enuf's avatar

Yes. I do this. Over the years I’ve come to see that it is a test. You want to see just how far you can push a person before they will abandon you. At least that’s how it is for me. I would venture a guess that if you are under more stress than usual or if you are just feeling generally down that is triggering this episode of trying to sabotage what is going well. It is definitely a fear of losing things that we hold dear, and unfortunately it actually works sometimes. I know that isn’t what you want, at least it was never what I really wanted, but I think it is a good time to take a step back and reevaluate your perspective. Reaffirm the positive things in your relationship, think of the ways that your s/o shows her commitment to you, the way she expresses her love for you. Try to make that your own, rather than relying on her to validate your relationship. Recognize that there are two parts to this, not just one, that she probably needs you just as much as you need her. You said above that she hasn’t done anything to show you otherwise, so try to really focus on that and hang on to it.

Jude's avatar

^^ Yup.

JilltheTooth's avatar

I could write a book.

Adirondackwannabe's avatar

Maybe you should talk to your s/o and explain a little of this to her so she understands what’s going on a little more. If she knows your struggling maybe she can give you a little more support. It’s part of being a s/o. Sometimes you get a little more from your partner, sometimes you give a little more to your partner. The sum is better than the parts.

bob_'s avatar

Fear of commitment is not uncommon. Trusting can be hard, so take it one step at a time. Have you talked to her about how you feel?

@iamthemob I stronly object to your one-dimensional comment. Now go make me a sandwich ~

Jude's avatar

<—is lovin’ @bob_ more and more…

bob_'s avatar

@mama_cakes Just don’t go and sabotage things XD

tinyfaery's avatar

Pushing people away, self-sabotage, and pulling away from those who love you are all symptoms of depression.

SamIAm's avatar

you’ve gotta work this out with yourself. i have someone doing this to me now and it’s really hard for me to cope… it makes the other person feel like they’re doing something wrong try to figure out what’s making you feel this way and get to fixin’ it! it’s not fair to anyone!

Jude's avatar

@tinyfaery I hear you, girl.

MissAnthrope's avatar

@tinyfaery – I had that same thought, mainly because I experienced a serious bout of depression in my last relationship and that’s exactly what I did. That caused so many more unnecessary problems and and drama, but I couldn’t help it.. I just didn’t want to talk to anyone, I didn’t want to be touched, I just wanted to be left alone.

Jude's avatar

It’s the depression, and I am fighting it like crazy, so, that I won’t go down the slippery slope.

I am seeing a therapist right now, so, I’m sure that she’ll help. Maladaptive ways of thinking, folks.

Neizvestnaya's avatar

Sure. At first when you’re dating someone and not yet in love or in a mutal relationship of any terms then you feel like you have control of yourself, like you’re right on top of things with only the best choices to accept. Once you fall in love and start thinking of a life together then you also start compromising all kinds of things in order to hum along better together. Suddenly you don’t feel in control of yourself to easily make the best choice if things were to turn “un great” because you don’t want to feel disappointment or the hurt of separation.

To make yourself feel more secure so you can banish the nagging thoughts then you start to push the other person, not because you suspect they’re bad but because you feel the need for them to prove everything’s okay and that they’re the real deal. The other person thinks you’re losing your mind and doesn’t understand the turnabout, insecurity or whatever. It sucks and telling yourself what you already know doesn’t always make the thoughts stop before you take action and hurt feelings. Like @JilltheTooth, I could write a book.

Vincent_Lloyd's avatar

I’m sure others have the same problem as you do. But sadly I can’t really answer since…well since I’ve only had one GF that I would have no experience with it at all. But I don’t think it’s a major problem just tell your significant other about it. I’m sure she’ll understand.

Kardamom's avatar

I completely understand this feeling. It’s like you’re bitten once, twice shy. You need to talk it out with your S/O a little bit, to explain it to her, and then actively decide to change what you do (or put another thought image into your head) whenever you start re-treating.

I would also suggest a few visits with a couples counselor. One of my good friends went to couples counseling right before they got married and then again right before they started a family. I think it gave them both a lot more confidence in continuing forward. A GOOD counselor can give you some tips on how to push the bad thoughts out of your head and how to actively change your behavior, inspite of your fears.

Jabe73's avatar

Yes I’ve done this alot because of past betrayal. I personally do not ever see me changing this. This is more like 100 times bitten and now shy (made my own phrase up here). People always end up turning on me, whether a guy I was once friends with or a woman I’ve dated. The few true friends I did have passed away. I’ve become an expert at blowing off people and avoid situations where interactions are likely to begin with so I’ve graduated ahead of you here already to the next level.

Greenie's avatar

Sometimes the reason people sabotage a relationship is because they don’t feel that they deserve love.

kess's avatar

You do not yet know who you are…..
Every fickle action then flow from this one problem.

Your ignorance is causing you to be arrogant, hard, unforgiving.
You walk around trying to be someone you are not.

You are quick to blame others for the negative things that rightfully belong to you.
and you are unwilling to allow peace to another in which you have found a fault.

When you understand who you are, you would be full of confidence in that knowledge,
Then you would stop seeing your negatives within another and then blaming them for it.

Instead you would learn to accept all despite their obvious weaknesses and shortcomings.

Now you begin to LIVE because you are now free…...

Take note: you have asked a question ONLY YOU can TRULY Answer… then answer it and you begin to know yourself. Truth usually gives pleasant surprises even when it may seem dark eventually you will see Light.

for Truth is Life light and Knowledge and it begins with YOU.

Jude's avatar

I know exactly who I and what I am all about, but, thanks.

tinyfaery's avatar

I know who you are, too. :)

Jude's avatar

Which means? :)

youcancallmemoonman's avatar

Ive done it and I’m usually right.

Bellatrix's avatar

I just came across this question, and I know in the past I have done this @Jude. I am aware of this tendency though and so in my current relationship, despite the urge to stuff things up, I really fought against it until I got used to things and felt more comfortable. It worked for me. I hope it does for you.

Jude's avatar

@Bellatrix So far, so good. Thanks!

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