Most people have experienced a bad relationship at some point in their lives. Whether it was with a family member, friend, or romantic partner, bad relationships can have a major impact on our lives. These effects can be both negative and positive, but often times they are more harmful than we realize.
In this article, we will explore some of the biggest effects of staying in bad relationships.
Effects of Bad Relationships
People who are unhappy in relationships begin a domino ripple effect that affects every other aspect of their lives in subtle, negative ways, primarily through low esteem and weak self-love.
When we don’t love ourselves or feel appreciated, we have nothing to give others, and we tend to be unhappy or controlling. We also focus inwards as we are unable to relate to others sympathetically.
That’s the time we are likely to be aggressive, seek constant attention in negative ways, be critical and find scapegoats. The very nature of relationships ensures that we lose that sense of love and compassion when we have trouble at home.
I am willing to bet my last dollar that behind every chronic absentee at work, or any hyper-critical and challenging boss, there is low self-esteem, a lack of self-love, a relationship in trouble or no relationship at all!
Those affected by a break-up also tend to expect the worst to happen again, either blaming themselves or their partners and living in a state of fear. They often use old partners to judge potential new ones (bad mistake!) and remain unduly bitter and vengeful for years afterwards.
It is natural to be hurt by a broken relationship, especially if you did not instigate it. But, if the person is stuck back there two or three years post-divorce, it will waste his life and retard her talent. Negativity simply destroys. It builds nothing. Only positive action achieves what we want.
We cannot rebuild our lives, or help any children caught in the conflict to feel good about themselves, if we do not reduce the hatred and blame, especially in our heads, and look ahead to something better. We can never change things in the past. Low esteem keeps us back there, replaying old events in our minds and irresponsibly using our children as pawns in the break-up while our present rattles mockingly past us.
Stuck in the Past
You can always spot someone who perceives themself to have had a raw deal from or to be the victim of a broken relationship. They usually recount their negative experiences at every opportunity, becoming more self-righteous in the telling as they gloss over their part in it.
They are usually stuck in the past, using it to judge their future while neglecting opportunities and making excuses for their present, significantly if life hasn’t improved as they hoped. This makes them wary of other relationships, a reaction likely to prompt them toward a series of disastrous short-term ones, that only reinforce their fears, or no relationship at all.
This detached approach is supposed to either prevent them from being ‘caught’ again or allow them to wait eternally for Ms/Mr Right, depending on their perception. However, their situation has a way of repeating itself, becoming a self-fulfilling prophecy because, subconsciously, they continue to behave the same way as before, thus repeatedly getting whatever they have always got.
Only forgiveness makes them whole, and success and happiness will forever elude those caught in such negativity until they truly forgive themselves – and others, change their approach and perception of potential partners and move on.
Unwittingly caught in this revolving door of low self-esteem, continuous blaming and handy scapegoating – with an ego to match – some men and women even lose the ability to woo someone afresh. Many still cling to old partners after separation, which prevents both parties from moving on to a new life or finding new soulmates.
However, the longer they take to get back into stride, to enter a meaningful relationship that reinforces their worth, the longer they are likely to remain single and unhappy. They often become increasingly unattractive, tending to use their fears and tales of woe to bore new interests to death. If this happens around the ages of late thirties to early forties, the time of the mid-life crisis when the need to prove personal appeal becomes strongest, the results can be tragic.
At such times, too many become desperate for any relationship – and, as someone once said starkly, ‘desperation has no deodorant’!