Low self-esteem and relationships

Most people who have experienced abuse, neglect, abandonment and rejection often attract spouses in relationships who can reinforce the emotions that are associated with these experiences.

These individuals unconsciously work hard in relationships by trying to please their spouse in exchange for attention, recognition, acceptance, and more importantly love. If you have to work hard for love, you will continue working hard in need to gain love.

When a person’s esteem is low, they often attract partners who have low self-concept, which keeps the negative cycle going.

Women with low self esteem are more likely to be drawn to spouses whose character resembles their fathers, particularly if their fathers were abusive, emotionally unavailable, didn't love them or value them when growing up.

When you put people on a pedestal, you tend to always look up to them and in response; they will always look down at you.

Sometimes women use make-up and clothes to attract the opposite sex, unconsciously in exchange for love. When they don't get the attention they need, they often wonder if there is something wrong with them.

They may even view sex as love, and have casual relationships in exchange for love.

If your esteem is low, you're likely to settle for less, and never ask for what you want within relationships.

Low self-concept, demonstrates neediness, desperation and anxiety within relationships, which can be unappealing regardless of how attractive you are. 

If you don't love yourself, why should someone else love what you don't love?

A person with low self-esteem often puts their spouse's needs before their own, which could cause to anger and resentment.

Desperate and broken women attract desperate and broken men.

Many people are struggling with issues associated with their childhood and not taking responsibility for the damage, pain and disappointments that they have experienced when growing up. Some look for others to fix them by jumping from one relationship to the next, only to realise the negative emotions and pain still remains as they unconsciously hold on to blame, pain and unforgiveness from the past.

Sometimes a person can spend a lot of time being angry and blame others for how they feel. They may feel devalued, as they have valued others more. It is painful, when you don’t receive what you invest in others. However, it is worth taking time to explore the emotions that are hidden behind the anger, which could be: rejection, abandonment or hurt.

When you take the time to dig deeper, you may realise that this anger may have manifested from your childhood and have been buried. Hence, when triggered, you feel rejection, abandonment, pain and hurt.

Over coming low self-esteem

You will attract emotionally balanced individuals when you're balanced and whole within yourself.

It is important to understand your purpose in life and have a vision, this gives you a direction and hope, even when things are not the way you want it in the moment.

Have quality 'me-time' on a regular basis, this helps you to connect and nurture yourself.

Read more books, knowledge is power.

Make more positive and supportive friends, who have similar interest to you.

Learn to forgive others, even when it is difficult.

Take care of your self-image.

Find someone you trust to share your problems with, so you can off load.

Take responsibility for your happiness.

Do things that you enjoy.

Be your own best friend.

Try new things to come out of your comfort zone.

Utilise your skills and strengths that you have.

Learn positive things in every negative situation  

No matter what, never give up.

Counselling Directory is not responsible for the articles published by members. The views expressed are those of the member who wrote the article.

Share this article with a friend

Written by Kate Megase MBACP accredited, registered Psychotherapist & Clinical Supervisor

My aim is to help you with any problem or emotional pain, which you are finding hard to handle on your own, resolve these difficulties, achieve your goals and provide you with the tools to ensure long-lasting success.
I am passionate about my work and I am committed to providing an excellent service to help my clients:

Improve self-esteem
Develop healthy relationships… Read more

Written by Kate Megase MBACP accredited, registered Psychotherapist & Clinical Supervisor

Show comments

Find a counsellor or psychotherapist dealing with relationship issues

All therapists are verified professionals.

Real Stories

More stories

Related Articles

More articles