Romantic relationships play a pivotal role in our lives, yet the path to attracting and maintaining them can vary greatly. While some individuals effortlessly forge and sustain relationships, others find it to be an arduous journey.

Even those who excel at attracting partners may struggle with the challenges and hardships that arise within relationships. It’s not uncommon for relationships to lack fulfilment or fall short of being healthy.

Creating and nurturing fulfilling relationships necessitates a solid foundation of self-esteem, emotional intelligence, boundary-setting skills, conflict resolution abilities, and emotional regulation; among other essential interpersonal competencies.

However, even with the best intentions, our parents might not have possessed the necessary tools to impart and exemplify these crucial skills to us.

It’s crucial to acknowledge that our parents, who likely had their own struggles. They may have faced even greater difficulties in their time. Instead of assigning blame, it’s important to recognise our patterns and take responsibility for cultivating new ones.


What do you do when there is an emotional imbalance in your relationship?

Seeking Relationships for the Right Reasons: Breaking Free from Emotional Void and Fear

narcissistic men

Warning Signs in Dating: Are You Involved with a Toxic Person?

Some individuals embark or stay in relationships driven by misguided motives. They may be consciously or unconsciously attempting to fill an internal void or succumbing to the fear of solitude. It is essential to reassess these motivations and cultivate healthier foundations for genuine connections.

Others may enter relationships with good intentions, yet struggle due to low self-esteem, inadequate personal boundaries, or unresolved past traumas. These challenges often result in attracting toxic relationships. Healing and growth are key to breaking free from such detrimental patterns.

Weathering the Storms: Building Resilience in Evolving Relationships

Even relationships between two well-adjusted individuals can encounter difficulties as time passes. External factors, health concerns, or changes in circumstances for one or both partners can create imbalances within the relationship. Cultivating resilience, adaptability, and effective communication becomes paramount in navigating these challenges.

By acknowledging the gaps in our interpersonal education, understanding the underlying motives behind seeking relationships, addressing personal wounds and traumas, and developing resilience; we can embark on a journey of personal growth and foster healthier and more fulfilling connections.

Unveiling Relationship Imbalances: Impact and Wellbeing

Initially, relationships can provide us with the love and attention we crave, boosting our self-esteem. However, as the initial excitement fades and normality sets in, partners naturally withdraw some of their attention and adoration. It is during this shift that our unmet needs and insecurities resurface. Often the feeling returns even more pronounced because we believed they were finally resolved and left behind. It becomes tempting to blame our partner for not fulfilling these needs.

Conversely, individuals with intimacy issues may initially offer attention and closeness when the relationship is lighthearted and effortless. However, as the relationship deepens and becomes more real, they may withdraw and become emotionally distant.

In this intricate interplay, relationships often reflect our deepest needs and shortcomings, providing an opportunity for personal growth. However, this growth can only occur if we closely examine our patterns and actively address them. Otherwise, we are likely to repeat the same cycles and encounter similar challenges.

couple hugging on the beach at sunrise

Striving for Connection

When one partner exhibits greater love or emotional investment in a relationship than the other, a persistent imbalance can emerge. This disparity can lead to significant relationship issues and adversely affect the well-being of both individuals involved.

As one partner yearns for more love and attention from the other, they often exert increasing effort to obtain it. Paradoxically, this intensified pursuit often diminishes the inclination of the other partner to reciprocate.

If the withdrawing partner is mature and loving, this situation will make them feel bad about themselves and about not appreciating a loving partner. Yet, they may find it challenging to break free from this pattern.

Toxic Relationships

This imbalance may stem from differences in lifestyles, interests, and life goals between partners. However, it could also be linked to attachment styles that remain unaddressed, perpetuating themselves from one relationship to another. In some cases, however this disparity may indicate that we are in a toxic relationship.

A narcissistic or toxic partner will expect you to be happy with the breadcrumbs and make you feel like you are too needy or sensitive. She or he may expect you to be content with minimal effort and dismiss your emotional needs as excessive or hypersensitive. This may leave you feeling unheard and disregarded.

This coaching program is designed to assist you in identifying the underlying dynamics within your current or past relationships. By gaining insight into these dynamics, you can explore the potential for reversing them, if feasible, or proactively address them for future relationship success.

Trauma Bonding

Reframing Childhood Trauma: Reduced Opportunity to Shape Your Identity and Relationships

“Trauma is not what happens to you. Trauma is what happens inside you as a result of what happens to you.”

Dr. Gabor Maté

Childhood trauma is often associated with catastrophic incidents such as incest or physical abuse. However, it is important to recognise that when a child is entirely reliant on their parents for physical and emotional support, any absence or neglect can be experienced as traumatic, regardless of the magnitude of the event.

During childhood, a child lacks the emotional and cognitive resources to navigate challenging situations independently. Therefore, when they encounter difficult circumstances without adequate support or are emotionally neglected, it can be overwhelming and perceived as a threat to their very survival.

The absence of support during childhood can hinder healthy development and have long-lasting effects on well-being. Emotionally and physically unavailable caregivers can leave lasting scars, disrupting the child’s ability to form secure attachments, regulate emotions, and navigate relationships in adulthood.

Continuous neglect during childhood can lead to the development of Complex Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (C-PTSD) symptoms in adulthood. When neglect is accompanied by verbal or physical abuse, the symptoms can intensify, further exacerbating the effects on an individual’s well-being.

The Crucial Role of Parental Feedback: Nurturing Personality, Boundaries, and Emotional Regulation

A fundamental aspect of healthy development lies in receiving appropriate feedback from parents regarding emotions and needs. This consistent support allows for the formation of one’s personality, personal boundaries, and the development of emotional regulation skills. While perfect parenting doesn’t exist, “good-enough parenting” entails parents being available and supportive, especially during critical events in childhood.

Even with loving parents who provide physical care and meet basic needs, if they are unable to support the child during difficult or threatening events, validate emotions, assist in emotional regulation, or serve as role models for these skills, the child’s responses to various life experiences can be shaped by trauma.

Of course there may also be situations, where the parents are the direct cause of our trauma, such as when one parent possesses narcissistic or Cluster B personality traits. Or as a result of one of the parents being sick or depressed, or for example having a differently-abled sibling. It all depends how these things were managed within the family.

Understanding Complex PTSD: The Impact of Continuous Neglect

Complex PTSD can also result from abusive relationships, whether verbal or physical in nature. The underlying cause of complex PTSD is the persistence of neglect or abuse over time.

By recognising the impact of neglect and abuse, and the importance of emotional support in all relationships, we can begin to navigate the complex terrain of trauma and work towards healing and growth.

Lonely woman

Individuals with Complex Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (C-PTSD) often face challenges in forming and maintaining intimate relationships. These difficulties can manifest in various ways, itrauma bonding, developing co-dependency, or adopting anxious attachment styles.

Trauma bonding refers to the attraction towards relationships that replicate our past traumatic experiences. Despite being aware of their unhealthy nature, we often find ourselves unable to leave these relationships due to complex emotional ties and psychological factors.

Other Symptoms of C-PTSD

In addition to relationship struggles, C-PTSD can manifest through symptoms such as underachievement of one’s potential, excessive overworking and overachieving or over pleasing others.

Those with C-PTSD may experience emotions more intensely, contributing to the cycle of trauma bonding, where individuals repeatedly reinforce negative relationship patterns.

Serious symptoms, including depression and other mental health conditions, can also arise from C-PTSD. It is essential to recognise and address these challenges to promote overall well-being and relationship growth.

If you resonate with these patterns or symptoms and are seeking to improve your relationships, consider engaging in coaching services. Toxic Relationship Coaching and Break-Up Coaching are available both online and in-person, offering personalized guidance and strategies to navigate the complexities of C-PTSD and foster healthier connections. For further information, please contact me here.

Together, we can embark on a journey of healing and transformation, empowering you to build fulfilling and resilient relationships.