Articles in Category: Behavior Patterns

Why Do People Repeat the Same Dysfunctional Patterns?

Why Do People Repeat the Same Dysfunctional Patterns?

Jane is a 44 year-old woman who has been in three abusive relationships. The last one was particularly bad and it took a lot of courage and help to free herself. Not surprisingly, Jane grew up in a family where her father regularly abused her mother both physically and emotionally. He didn't physically abuse the children, but he was emotionally abusive to them at times. Jane had a mixed emotional relationship with him. She was his favorite and he spent extra time with her. On good occasions, he was loving and interested in her, but the relationship could take a big shift when he was angry. During those times he was overly critical and attacking. Over time, Jane's self esteem suffered and she learned to doubt her own perceptions of herself. As an adult, she sought out relationships with men that alternately placed her on a pedestal and tore her down. She was also the victim of physical abuse in each of these relationships.