Jul 172011
 

choosing men who aren't good for me

Before you can stop choosing men who aren’t good for you, you need to figure out why you’re attracted to them in the first place.

Here’s how to stop choosing men who are bad for you, and start thinking about what love REALLY means.

These tips are inspired by a reader, who said:

“I’ve been in an unhealthy relationship for over a year and a half,” says C. on How to Let Go of Someone You Love. “Actually, to be truthful, I’ve been in a string of unhealthy relationships ever since I was 15.”

The good news is that she recognizes her pattern: she gravitates towards wrong men and stays in unhealthy relationships. And, more good news is that there are so many books about changing your patterns and life habits!

Here’s a popular one: Why People Choose the Wrong Mate: Avoiding the 9 Deadly Booby Traps. In it, you’ll learn how to avoid the liars, cheaters, fakes, users and abusers. You’ll learn how to identify and avoid individuals who will leave you crying in the dark and regretting the day you ever met them. If you keep choosing the wrong guy to love, you need to read that book!

And here are a few tips for getting over your own bad decisions…

Why Do You Keep Choosing the Wrong Guy?

“Most times it is not just bad luck that steers women to the wrong man time and time again,” writes Lynn Norment in Why Some Women Choose the Wrong Man Time and Time and Time Again. “Sometimes the pattern of loser-lovers is indicative of a deeper, more serious flaw in the woman’s personality or character. Or the problem may stem from the woman’s family history. And it usually is rooted in lack of self-esteem and self-love. In addition, far too many women blindly get involved with man after man without stopping to assess what went wrong in previous relationships.”

Let’s tackle one of those reasons, and sprinkle in my own experience…

Family history – no or bad father figure

“Women who are unable to sustain romantic relationships almost always had fathers who could not be counted on, or who were emotionally or physically unavailable when they were growing up,” writes Relationship therapist and author Audrey B. Chapman in Getting Good Loving: How Black Men and Women Can Make Love Work. “A loving mother is not enough to offset those difficulties. A missing father can mean a lifetime search for daddy figures in every romantic endeavor. Too many girls grow up not being affirmed by a man, not knowing what it’s like to be nurtured, protected or acknowledged by a paternal figure. As women, they often seek love and closeness in dysfunctional relationships, tolerating distant, non-nurturing men who exhibit behaviors similar to those in their absent or fantasized fathers.”

I did the opposite.

I didn’t have a dad growing up – I was raised by a single mother. I didn’t go the “unhealthy relationships” route; I didn’t get close to choosing the wrong man! Instead, I avoided relationships altogether. Now, I’ve been happily married for almost six years to a great guy. How did I overcome my fear of intimacy? I saw a counselor every week for a year.

How to Stop Choosing Men Who Aren’t Good for You

“I’m starting to think I’m ‘unlovable,’” says C. “I see happy couples and friends who are getting engaged and married and I just want to know, why not me? What’s so wrong with me that someone can’t love me that much? I would like to know how I can learn to be happy being alone and how to have my guard up next time. Every relationship I give 100% of my heart and I want to learn how to protect myself from this happening again.”

Here’s my advice – and I welcome you to share your own in the comments section below.

Set your intention for your life and your future relationships

What do you want out of life? What kind of woman do you want to be? Who do you want to be with? How can you become emotionally, spiritually, and physically stronger?

To successfully set your intention for your future, you need to stop focusing on the reasons why you keep choosing the wrong men. Instead, focus on that which you want to create in your life – because your thoughts become things. If you want to be happy being alone, learn how to be happy being alone. If you want to learn how to choose better men and relationships, then dive into that.

You might also learn how to spot a man who will try to manipulate and control you.

Seek the right type of support

I was too scared to choose the right man because I didn’t know what it meant to be in a happy relationship or marriage. So, I went for counseling. I read books. I started hanging out with happily married couples, and asking them questions about what it’s like to be married.

What support you need? Maybe you need to build your self-esteem or improve your self-confidence.

You can stop choosing the wrong man – you can start making better choices in your life – but you have to step up to the plate. I don’t know what the right type of support is for you. A support group, perhaps, so you learn to recognize and stop your patterns? A self-defense course to empower and increase your self-esteem? Psychology classes, to give you insight and information?

The best tip for getting the help you need

The best way to get the right support is to try different things until you find what resonates with you. For me, it was counseling — the worst and best year of my life! I both hated and loved my counselor. She changed my life, so I ended up loving her.

If you need help getting over a breakup, read Starting Over After Your Relationship Ends – 8 Tips for New Beginnings.

Or maybe you just want to focus on finding love! But I think it’s better to work on yourself first, before you start searching for the right guy. Choosing the right man should be the result of being a strong, happy, self-confident woman. The right guy isn’t the solution — it’s the symptom of a deeper problem.

Your turn: what are your reasons for choosing the wrong man…and how will you stop?

If You Need Help With Your Love Life…

How to Get Your Ex Back

Stop the Divorce and Save Your Marriage

How to Captivate a Man and Make Him Fall in Love With You

laurie pawlik kienlenI'm Laurie Pawlik-Kienlen - Christian, bookworm, travel bug, flute player, writer, blogger, warrior princess. :-) My husband and I live in Vancouver, Canada with our cat and dogs.

What's happening in your life? I welcome your big and little comments below! I can't give you advice, but writing might bring you clarity and insight.

"I pray that God, the source of hope, will fill you completely with joy and peace because you trust in Him. Then you will overflow with confident hope through the power of the Holy Spirit." - Romans 15:13

In peace and passion...Laurie

  6 Responses to “How to Stop Choosing the Wrong Men”

  1. Dear Ruth,

    Thanks for being here, and for sharing your story. It sounds like you have some insight into your past choices, but you want to make good ones in the future! You want this for both you and your daughter — and this is very healthy. Good for you, for making the conscious choice to find the right man to love.

    Here’s an article on choosing the right boyfriend:

    http://theadventurouswriter.com/quipstipsrelationships/the-best-way-to-find-a-good-boyfriend-look-inward-first/

    Also, I encourage you to introduce men you are interested in to your closest, most trusted friend(s). Ask them to help you make the right decision. Tell them you want to make healthy choices, but you tend to get sidetracked by love and lust. Ask them to give you their true opinions about the men you date — and don’t ignore their advice!

    I hope this helps….unless your friends and family members were blindsided by your past husband and boyfriends?

    Another thing is to GO SLOW. Take your time when you’re getting to know a guy. Don’t jump into bed or any other commitment until you know him well. I know it’s hard to go slow when you really like someone, but it’s one of the best ways to choose the right man for you and your daughter.

    What do you think?

    Blessings,
    Laurie

  2. Hello Laurie: I’m a single mom with a 8 years old girl. I was married for 8 years. My exhusband had drugs and angry issues. I hate drugs. I didn’t see any of the negative things until later.. However I been seen different guys for the past few years but unfurnatelly every single guy was the wrong guy.
    I don’t understand why? I don’t know what’s wrong with me? I’m hard worker, fitness person, single mom and independent, fun and loving person. I always give 100% of me. My parents continue together, they never drink or use any drugs. They go to chuch every weekend. I never saw my parents fight infront of me. My dad always respect my mom but he always was very demanding with the cleaning, school, etc, My relationship with my father was better when I was a child. I trust my father as a father but no as a friend. I talk to my mom more about my personal life…..
    However what Can I do to stop this bad pattern and to avoid my daughter making the same mistake. I have full custody of my daughter but I’m worry I don’t want she makes the same mistake.
    I decided to be single but I’m sad because I would love someday to be marry again and have more kids.. But I’m always choosing the wrong guy!! Please help me what Can I do?

  3. Im in a relationship,witha man that I love.idontfeel thatheloves me back. I try toto talk to him to explain what I need. But imbeing told that he is unable to give it to me.
    He only uses common courtesy 50% of the time. He is mean to me when he gets angry. He really do not feel like doing anything that i ask him to do for me. But i sacrifice for him all the time.
    Im hurting most of the time.
    He possesses the normal aquarious traits. I possess the normaal cancer traits. I dont expect this to get better, so i know we wont make it . However he is my best friend, i dont want to loose that. Please advise.

  4. That’s strange because I had a mother and a father.. my dad was a provider, and a great man.. stand up guy. I was daddys lil girl.. a spoiled girl at that.. out of 2 of us, I was the golden child to dad.. I think my issue may have came from me being foundled with by a family member.. I just can’t link it to that. I never told any one, not even my dad until I was 23.. I was 11when it happened.. it was his first cousin.. Smh.. anyway I had kids at 17 n 22 and was physically and verbally abused for 10 yr by the father of my 2 children.. my dad died when I was 23… Saddest day of my life.. I was with the father of my kids for 6 yrs before dads death.. dad would be angry that I tolerated this. It even put a strain on our relationship.. ever since, I never again dated an abuser but I tend to date needy men. Men that have nothing. I d
    Feel as if I’m their mother.. like I need to be I’m control.. and them get angry because they don’t want to change.. its kinda weird.. I do suffer from esteem issues.. my mom and I stopped getting along after she and dad split when I was 13. So maybe that’s it.. idk

  5. Dear Jennifer,

    Thank you for writing here! I’m glad you shared your story, and I’m sad for what you have gone through.

    But you’re a survivor!! Look at all you’ve been through, and how many people depend on you to stay healthy and whole. You have so much insight and self-awareness – you know that you keep choosing the wrong men to love and you hurt yourself because of the horrible way you’ve been treated in the past.

    That’s the first step to building a healthy, happy life: being aware of how your past is affecting who you are today.

    The second step is to start moving towards healing. I don’t know what that means for you. Should you go to counseling? Or maybe read books about self-compassion and healing (I’m reading SELF-COMPASSION: HOW TO STOP BEATING YOURSELF UP by Kristin Neff — it’s a fabulous book).

    It may also be good to listen to your friends. I don’t know if they’re right or not, but if they’re saying that you keep making the same mistakes and choosing the wrong men to love, then maybe you are?

    If you’d like to tell me the top three things you want to change about your life — things you have control over — I can write an article that gives you some ideas. Even just writing down what you want to change about your life can help you move towards healing and happiness!

    Blessings,
    Laurie

  6. I NEVER HAD A VOICE GROWING UP I SEE THING THAT WAS UGLY I BEEN TOLD THINGS TJHAT WAS UGLY ,MY FATHER WAS THEIR BUT NOT THRIR EMOTIONLY ,I GREW UP WITH A MOTHER THAT HAD TO WORK AND WAS BEATEN MOST OF MY LIFE , I WAS THINGS IA CHILD SHOULD NEVER SEE , I THOUGHT IT WAS LOVE BUT AS I GREW UP I LEARN IT WAS ABUSE ,I SAW MY MOTHER CRY ALL THE TIME BUT NEVER COMPLAIN , I WAS HER PUNISH IN THE WORSE WAY ,I WAS MY DAD PULL OUT KNIFE TO STAB HER BUT I WAS FROZIND AS I CAUTH MY SELF I CLOSE THE DRAW AND I REALISE AT THAT MOMENT , THIS IS NOT NORMAL ,AS I BECOME A TEEN I RUN I WANTED TO FIND A PLACE WHERE I BELONG AND THAT WAS WERE IT BEGAN , I SEARD FOR LOVE ALL IN THE WRONG PLACES I SEARD FOR A FATHER FIGURE , FRIST IT EAS LOVE IT ,THEN SLAP THEN KICK THEN REAL BEATEN ,, I IN MY MING THIOUGHT IT WAS NORMAL DIS IS HOW A MAN SHOW HIS LOVE SO IN MIND HE LOVE ME … AFTER BEATEN ME VERBALLY ABUSEING ME USEING ME CHEATING HE DID WHAT MY FATHER DID ABANDED ME .. NOT A NICE WORD NOT A SMILE NOT A HUG NO SUPPORT AS THAT TOOK PLACES I SAID IT WAS ME IT HAD TO BE HOW COULD I HAVE MADE HIM SO BAD … AFTER THAT FRIST LOVE I FOUND MY SELF IN THE SAME PLACES OVER AND OVER AGAIN ,, LIKE I SAID IT WAS MY FAULTH THEY KEEP LEAVENING ME .. I DRONW MY HURT WITH THE ONLY THING I KNEW THAT I WAS MY WHOLE LIFE BOOSES . I STARTED TO HURT MY SELF PHYSICALLY I BECAME NOTHING JUST HOW THY ALL TREATING ME ..I WAS NOTHING AND NEVER WILL BE I TRY SO HARD TO MAKE SENSE OF MY LIFE I STILL NO KNOW HOW TO UNDERSTAND WHAT WRONG WITH ME BUT AND SCARED AND ALOND AND FEEL LIKE DIEING ,, I TRY TO TALK AND EXPLAIN TO PEOPLE WHAT GOING ON BUT EVERY ONE SAY IT UR FUALTH ..U KEEP GOING BACK TO THE SAME THING ..NO ONE TO TALK TO NO ONE TO HELP SEARCHING FOR A EASY WAY OUT
    SO SAY TO U IT MAYBE MY PAST IT MAY BE HOW I GREW UP BUT IT MAY BE ME .. AM SO OVER TRYING TO FIGURE IT OUT .. THINK RIGHT NOW I WANNA DIE BUT I CANT CAUSE I HAVE SO MANY PEOPLE WHO COUNT ON ME ,, SO TO END MY STORY THEIRS NO WAY OUT