Do you long to be in a loving relationship, but so far, haven’t found the right person?
Or you DID find the right person, but they disappeared, withdrew, or told you they were not in love with you?
Maybe your history of relationships looks something like this:
Whatever your specific circumstances, you are now left feeling heartbroken, confused and hurt.
Why can’t you meet someone who is available and willing to love you back?
Why are your friends in relationships, and you can’t seem to get past the first date, or the first few months, before things fall apart?
You’re starting to think there may be something wrong with YOU. Maybe you’re unknowingly attracted to, or attracting people who are “emotionally unavailable”—meaning, not able to love you in the way you want to be loved.
If you’re starting to suspect this, you may be right. Here’s why…
If you are starting to wonder if perhaps there’s something about you that makes you a magnet for people who are incapable of a loving, healthy and long-term relationship, you’re right.
But the reason may surprise you.
I have often stated that we attract each other at our common level of woundedness or our common level of health.
What exactly does this mean?
Our level of woundedness is the level at which we ignore or distract ourselves from our emotional pain, or do things that aren’t in our best interest in order to avoid having to feel unpleasant emotions. I call this self-abandonment, or “abandoning” yourself.
If we have a high level of woundedness—or self-abandonment—that means we may have many unacknowledged or unresolved painful feelings originating from childhood that we haven’t been able to heal, and that we keep currently re-wounding ourselves by how we treat ourselves.
Our level of health is the level at which we are loving ourselves. When we are healthy, we recognize and acknowledge our feelings (all of them), learn about what they are telling us, and do things that are in our best interest. We don’t make others responsible for how we’re feeling. We take responsibility for our feelings, and allow others to take responsibility for their feelings.
In any given relationship, the way each partner is or isn’t loving to him or herself may be different, but how much they are unloving to themselves within the primary relationship is similar.
Therefore, we find ourselves attracted to people who struggle to love themselves just as we struggle to love ourselves.
By the same token, if we are loving to ourselves, we will be drawn to people who are also loving to themselves. We will be repelled by people who are unloving to themselves.
Here’s an example that helps illustrate this…
Jimmy and Marie meet and are attracted to each other. Jimmy abandons himself through ignoring his own feelings and pulling on others to fill him up with attention, approval, and sex.
Marie abandons herself by being a caretaker—tending to others’ feelings while ignoring her own.
Their common level of woundedness is the degree to which they each ignore their own feelings and avoid responsibility for them, along with the degree to which they each turn to various addictive controlling behaviors to attempt to fill the emptiness within that results from their self-abandonment.
How does this look like in their relationship? Jimmy doesn’t ever ask Marie what she wants or needs, and further, lashes out at her whenever he thinks she’s not giving him the attention he wants—like when she rejects his sexual advances or doesn’t answer his texts right away. He also gets annoyed with her whenever she pulls on him to be more loving or accuses him of being distant and uncaring.
Marie blames Jimmy for his “selfish” behavior and refuses to take responsibility for her own feelings of worthlessness and unlovability.
Jimmy and Marie are both unwilling and unable to take responsibility for their feelings and needs, nor are they able to be loving with themselves - because they don’t know-how. They were drawn to each other because of this common level of woundedness.
A woman who is taking responsibility for her own feelings—who is aware of what she is feeling and takes loving action on her own behalf— would not be attracted to Jimmy. She would immediately feel Jimmy’s inner emptiness and neediness, and his energy would feel to her like the repelling end of a magnet.
Likewise, a man who is loving to himself or aware of his feelings would not be attracted to Marie. Instead, he would feel put off by her caretaking and the inner neediness from which it stems.
He would feel her insecurity, her fears of rejection, and the anxiety that goes along with inner abandonment.
No matter how beautiful Marie is, this man would not be attracted to her because he would sense her inner woundedness and her lack of self-love.
It doesn’t matter how much you have “going” for you.
It doesn’t matter how handsome, beautiful, athletic, accomplished, and successful you are.
It doesn’t matter how witty you are, or how many interests you have in common with the person you’re dating.
None of those things matter if the kind of person you’re seeking is repelled by you on an unconscious level.
In other words, the reason you are attracting partners who are unwilling, unable or unavailable to love you isn’t because you’re unattractive or dull.
It’s because you are not available to yourself— to taking responsibility for your own feelings.
As long as you are abandoning yourself, you will attract someone who is also abandoning themselves, and this self-abandonment may show up as emotional unavailability.More About Self-Abandonment
If you want to attract more available partners or someone who is willing and able to love you in the way you want to be loved, you must stop abandoning yourself by ignoring your feelings, judging yourself, and turning to addictions, including the addiction of making another person responsible for your worth and lovability.
This means that if you NEED to be in a relationship in order to feel good about yourself, you are self-abandoning.
You also know you’re self-abandoning when:
The cure for self-abandonment is taking loving care of yourself.
Once you are taking loving care of yourself—not in order to get a partner, but because being loving is your highest priority—then it is likely that you will attract a loving and available partner.
That’s where my process of Inner Bonding can help tremendously.
Inner Bonding is a process I co-developed in 1984 with my friend and fellow therapist, Dr. Erika Chopich.
Inner Bonding provides you with the skills to take loving care of yourself, and be empowered to take full responsibility for all your own feelings and behavior.
It is a process which, when practiced consistently, heals limiting beliefs, addictive behavior, relationship problems, and the emotional pain stemming from fear, such as anger, shame, guilt, aloneness, depression, emptiness, and anxiety.
By practicing Inner Bonding and learning to take loving care of yourself, you will raise your level of emotional and relational health and will attract someone who also has a similar high level of emotional and relational health.
Here’s how the process works:
Step 1 of Inner Bonding helps you examine and face the full range of your feelings, and take full responsibility for your feelings, without making others responsible for your feelings of worth and lovability.
Then, steps 2-6 show you how to take loving care of yourself without having to rely on romantic relationships to make you feel lovable, but rather, take actions on your own behalf that are in your highest good.
When you go through the Inner Bonding process, you’ll find that you’ll effortlessly attract more available and healthy partners to you.
You won’t need anyone to change, or convince them that you’re the right partner, or “vet” them ahead of time to make sure they’re emotionally available.
Once you know how to be more loving to yourself, you will become wildly attractive to people who are also loving to themselves.
My eBook, Thriving At Last, is the complete manual and guide to the Inner Bonding process. It not only gives you the theory and “why,” but it takes you through self-reflection exercises that uncover so much of which you’ve been unaware:
You’ll learn how to become the kind of partner you want to attract: someone who takes responsibility for themselves and their feelings, knows how to set appropriate boundaries, and who doesn’t blame others for their own painful feelings.
Here’s where to learn more or get Thriving At Last:Attract Loving, Available Partners
As the law of attraction states, “Like attracts like.”
If you want to find an emotionally available partner who is capable of loving you, you must be capable of being loving to yourself.
If you aren’t sure if you know how to be loving to yourself, or you suspect that your relationship difficulties are the result of your feelings of unworthiness and low self-esteem, there is a way to heal that.
My eBook, Thriving At Last, will show you how in 6 simple steps.