14 thoughts on “Why Do We Repeat the Same Dysfunctional Relationship Patterns Over and Over?

  • July 17, 2018 at 6:05 am

    This is good Sharon, really needed this to start my day, I have changed so much the last couple of years, still have a long way to go yet. As I was reading I had a brief thought of printing it and giving it to my SO, then I came to my senses, an realized it would just be used against me.
    Someone needs to realize than you need to change, before you can change.
    thank you so much for this.

    • July 21, 2018 at 12:27 am

      Yes, we can only change ourselves!
      Thanks for stopping by to read and comment, Bob.

  • July 18, 2018 at 4:38 am

    That was a very helpful issue thanks alot

  • July 18, 2018 at 6:53 am

    I’m a 68 year old married man who has been disabled by severe bipolar illness since 2010. I qualified for SSDI in 2011 but the monthly check is small. My wife, who worked for the federal gov’t for 42 years, has an excellent pension, plus, she managed her money smartly. Even when I worked there was an imbalance in our marriage but since I lost the ability to work, I’m dependent on her for my survival, which has negatively impacted the marriage, emotionally and sexually. I cannot come to terms or acceptance with what happened to me, though I know it was due to an illness which I had no control over.

  • July 18, 2018 at 9:21 am

    I have a man that likes me. But he has been married 3 times and can not figure out what he is doing wrong.
    I spotted some things quite quickly.

    One of the things he does is expect people to be mind readers.
    I keep telling him that it’s ok to communicate.
    He argues back and says I should know that by now. And he gets a little disappointed that I am not a mind reader.
    I keep telling him that if you love someone, you have to tell them every day. Once every 2 weeks is not enough. I find it fascinating that he makes the same mistakes in the area of communication and has not learned from it.

  • July 20, 2018 at 9:41 am

    What really stood out from your article is my trauma has not been healed, which is why I keep repeating the same destructive behaviors. I’m 64 years old and have gone through at least 20 years of therapy. I’m shocked I still haven’t rewired my brain.

    • July 21, 2018 at 12:24 am

      It can be a slow process and I imagine you’ve made progress. Healing isn’t all or nothing – most of us are “partially healed” and continuing to make progress.
      Thanks for reading!

  • July 26, 2018 at 12:13 pm

    After a lifetime of choosing men who were unavailable in one way or another (working out my unavailable alcoholic dad stuff), I now have a man who adores me and is devoted to me and I am wondering what the hell is wrong with him, LOL! But I’ve had enough therapy and al-anon to know where this comes from. I am trying hard not to repeat my mom’s pattern with my stepdad. He treated her like a queen and she busted his balls for 30 years! Baby steps.

  • August 14, 2018 at 12:50 am

    Hi Sharon this is just what I needed where can I get your books are they available at the library

  • September 8, 2018 at 12:52 am

    Wow…. as I was reading this article, I felt like you were talking directly to me… I’m glad to read your work Sharon… sometimes I feel like you know EXACTLY what is happening in my life.

    • September 8, 2018 at 10:00 am

      Thanks for reading, Adeline. It always makes me happy to hear that an article really resonated!

  • December 26, 2018 at 11:08 am

    Sharon, I am an advocate for DV victims responding as a volunteer at Police HQ to assist victims when they are involved with a DV incident. We provide resource information and step them through the restraining order process when a TRO is granted. A familiar pattern as described in your paper concerns the upbringing of the abuser, similar episodes in prior relationships as well as the upbringing of the victim. One of the things I bring up in the conversation is the likelihood of the children exposed to the violent behaviors, to repeat the same behaviors in their adult life. I am also involved in training new volunteers and will use this information as a reference guide. Very well done, informative and useful for victims.

    • December 26, 2018 at 11:18 am

      Sounds like you’re doing great work, Walter! As you know, children suffer so much in abusive homes even when they aren’t physically abused.


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