Experts define addiction as "repeated involvement with a pleasurable substance or activity despite the harm it causes." While this condition is usually associated with behavior such as drug abuse or gambling, relationships can also become addictive.
Do you suspect you've become entangled in a destructive relationship? Break the cycle of co-dependency with these valuable tips.
Keep a Relationship Journal
Document each date, phone call or any other interaction you have with your partner. While you can write about your relevant feelings and emotions, it's important that you do so honestly and objectively. Over time, you're likely to find patterns that will help you uncover the root of the dysfunction.
Look for Connections
The comfort derived from addictive relationships often parallels past experiences. Write down the specific feelings preventing you from ending the relationship and think about other situations that have triggered the same emotions.
Surround Yourself with Supportive People
People often cling to bad relationships because they feel lonely or unlovable. Building a network of caring and supportive friends and family can help banish these insecurities and replace them with a foundation of strength.
Know What You Want
Do you find that your identity and self-worth are wrapped up in being part of a couple? Take 10 minutes each day to focus on what you want, mentally and physically, and how you'll accomplish it.
Relationships should enhance, not define, oneself. You deserve a nurturing, supportive partner at your side to share everything life has to offer.