A shaky self-confidence or relentless self-doubt stops many people from pursuing their passions. A fear of failure gnaws at them, leaving them at a standstill and unsatisfied with their lives.
Nothing interferes with the ability to have an authentic, reciprocal relationship like low self-esteem. If you can’t believe you’re good enough, how can you believe a loving partner
could choose you? Low self-esteem can make you sabotage relationships that have potentials, or settle for relationships which you’re treated in a way that matches your beliefs about yourself.
You feel wretched and fantasize that a knight in shining armor will take you out of your circumstances and make everything better. This longing may have formed from falling in love with the fantasy of a father. Maybe yours was unavailable enough that you
could idealize him without ever testing his fallibility. You may think you know why your father never “saved” you: it was your fault, not his. Or maybe he did, over and over and your relationship has to make you feel just
like that again.
Therefore, you may feel compelled to hold tight to the fantasy of perfection as the bar you set for your partner to live up to. Even if your partner turns out to be solid, consistent, and loving (though not in a flashy way), you may disqualify the efforts, and find ways to sabotage the relationship.
How could he really love me? She doesn’t really love me, does she? Below the surface, these insecurities guide your emotions and actions.
You can’t believe you could be truly loved and so you test your partner at every chance you get so that (s)he can demonstrate
his/her value (which you don’t believe or trust).
If your parents experienced a painful divorce or betrayed each other, you might feel unable to trust a partner now, whether you are conscious of your guardedness or not. Click 《》 to read my article on the effects of divorce.
You may be hesitant and afraid of allowing yourself to love so that you either abandon your partner
before you can be abandoned or you won’t allow yourself to get fully into a relationship in the first place. You are deeply afraid of exposing yourself to the possibility of being hurt.
Despite circumstances that could contribute to low self-esteem, some (wo)men are just built to be resilient. They’re born that way or work really hard to acquire the ability – despite
negative experiences – to engage in a positive, substantive relationship as they mature. Maybe there was a figure somewhere in her life that provided guidance and support and
helped to offset her low self-esteem with resilience. Resilience enables women to be more measured in their approach to men, rather than hysterical about it.
With low self-esteem, it can seem as if
nothing comes easily or naturally to you. Instead, because you don’t see yourself as naturally lovable, you feel like you have to fight and claw and strive for a mate. It’s as if unless you go nine million extra miles for something, you’re not going to get it.
Unfortunately, this can make you obsessed, consumed and infatuated with your object of affection in a way that ruins the ability to have a viable trajectory.
You’re already so far ahead. When the relationship doesn’t develop easily or on your timeline, it’s hard to tolerate. Instead, this is your cue to work even harder. Just know that it is hard for the other person to sustain that level of intensity right along with you, and it may be a more intense experience than (s)he is ready for.
Are you willing to surrender your hopes for an authentic connection with a partner to guarantee wealth and “financial safety”? This category manifests as the need to trap a
mate with looks or sex or your other physical resources while hiding what you see as a shameful inner part of yourself. This also allows the emotional safety of control: you’re in control of your ability to please a (wo)man
without having to give away your heart.
Because you are familiar with situations such as being left, being cheated on, etc. you gravitate towards relationships in which you’re able to feel this familiar insecurity. When it’s not there, you may even create it. If the relationship becomes too secure, you may become disinterested and bored and you may stray.
You’re so used to having to work to safe an insecure relationship that these types of relationships become the only ones you are used to. But, at the same time, a deeper part of you tries to push your relationship to the brink and then back again so you can artificially create an experience of insecurity.
You’re willing to commit yourself to the person who expresses interest in you. You become much less discriminating about who you choose.
You may even be willing to put up with a behavior that doesn’t satisfy you, because you
feel lucky to have anyone at all, even though you are aware you are not happy.
It can be hard to imagine and even harder to believe that you can create and sustain authentic connections. As a means of protecting yourself, you assume dishonesty even from an honest partner, which in turn sours the relationship as it goes on. Then, as
you disbelieve your partner so often, maybe even relentlessly that (s)he may begin to consider lying a viable option – (s)he is already “doing the time”, why not commit the crime? This in turn reaffirms your belief that no one
can be trusted.
There are far more ways people express low self-esteem in relationships. But
sometimes the self-knowledge gained by reading an article like this can help you understand not just pieces of who you are, but also pieces of who you are not.
Self-knowledge can help you steer away from some of these patterns of low self-esteem in relationships toward understanding, accepting and integrating your emotions, beliefs, and behaviors. Appreciating how your
actions have been impacted by your history can help you create an authentic connection in the here and now.
There is a huge misunderstanding that someone who cheats must be really confident — that is, they must think a whole lot of themselves. The jilted
person may then assume that if they felt better about themselves, their partner wouldn’t have strayed. This is detrimental thinking, as it is the cheater’s insecurity that’s the real cause of disloyalty.
We subconsciously rate how confident a person is by how they act and the
persona they put out in the world. But our assumptions aren’t always right.
It takes guts to be committed. To become emotionally intimate with another person in any relationship takes courage. If you really think about it, you’re letting down your guard to a stranger. It can be pretty scary to allow someone else in, to see yourself as you truly are beyond your mask — especially if you haven’t taken a peak inside yourself.
If you are not OK with yourself, you’ll simply run from one surface-skimming relationship to another to avoid getting close. This is cowardly; not a sign of confidence. This isn’t love, but fear.
True confidence comes not from having it all together, but by being completely secure in all sspects of yourself — the good, the bad, the beautiful and the ugly — and accepting all of it without judgment. You can drop the mask
that seeks approval from others and just be comfortable being you. Some people believe that loving yourself is about being positive or enlightened, but it really is just accepting yourself even when you are a brat, a dork or say stupid things.
It’s OK to make mistakes, but remember that not only are you humane, you are divine. You want a partner who doesn’t expect
perfection or desire a pretty mask to cover up what (s)he doesn’t want to face about themselves. You want someone brave and confident in the face of life’s ups and downs.
How do you attract a confident person? Be one. Don’t run away from yourself when things get tough, and you’ll find a partner who will stick with you too. If you don’t run, they won’t run. Confidence breeds commitment….with the right person, ofcourse.