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Relationship Addiction Counselling

People who are addicted to a relationship place the value of their beloved above everyone else, including themselves. They will abandon their own well-being in order to remain connected with their beloved. Relationship addicts can have an addictive relationship with anyone. The malady can also present itself in the opposite way where they cannot stop changing relationships, never really get to know someone for their true ‘self’ and are focussed on something they cannot get or find, thus never finding ‘the one’.

To the sufferer of a relationship addiction, the person whom they are addicted to is the solution to all of their problems and the success of the relationship provides them with self validation. Anyone can fall into an addictive relationship pattern and it can be a very difficult one to break because it is difficult to identify it as an addiction. Despite the difficulty that breaking a relationship addiction can present, it is not impossible. With the help of a counsellor and a good recovery programme the sufferer can begin to live a healthier and happier life.

Characteristics of Relationship Addiction

The first step to solving any problem is identifying that there is one. The same is true for relationship addiction. Often relationship addiction finds its roots in childhood where a relationship with an important loved one (sometimes a parent) does not meet the needs of the child. This can leave the individual trying to validate that they are a person worth loving, by finding a person who has the same traits as the parent (its not always obvious) and then trying to get what they never got as a child.

It may be time to seek professional help if any of the following characteristics apply to you.

  • Falls in love at first sight
  • Wanting to be together all of the time
  • Declares love early
  • Moves into relationships quickly without establishing common goals and values or building trust
  • Neglects everyone including themselves to be with this person
  • When the partner withdraws you feel panicked and unbearably lonely. You feel unworthy instead of annoyed
  • Intense sexual activity and/or bonding
  • Fantasizes about the person all of the time
  • You beg the person to stay at the expense of yourself
  • The more they reject you, the more anxious you become in your pursuit of them

 

Relationship addiction Treatment Options

Sufferers of Relationship addiction have a few places that they can turn. Many treatment options include counselling. Some counselors will use cognitive psychotherapy to help the person cope with the negative perceptions and beliefs they have that fuel the addiction.

In conjunction to therapy, a support network can also help to manage their relationship addiction. Depending on the individual that the person is experiencing an addictive relationship with, friends, family, or members of their church may be able to fill that supportive roll in their recovery process. In addition to or instead of family and friends, support through a mutual aid group such as Sex and Love Addicts anonymous can help the individual get support from others who can identify where they are coming from, as well as providing that all important connection with like minded people, and feel normal.

How Can Relationship Addiction Counselling Help?

A counsellor or psychotherapist will provide you with a safe and confidential environment to talk about your thoughts, feeling, and habits surrounding your addiction. They will help you to:

 

  • Accept that love and obsession are not the same thing
  • Understand that love does not hurt
  • Connect your feelings to their origins
  • Identify your triggers and healthy coping skills to manage them
  • Connect you with people going through the same thing
  • Live a healthier and happier life
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