It is possible to become dependent on relationships and love, just as you can have an dependence on nicotine. The first few stages of the relationship, where the parties are just getting to know one another, is where the “high” that the addict is seeking occurs. Relationship and love dependence can lead to a lack of strong romantic relationships, as well as other impulsive behavior.
Symptoms & signs of relationship dependence
- Enjoying the beginning stages of a relationship more than the rest of it
- Jumping from one relationship to another
- Obsessing over your current love interest
- Remaining dependent on the other person to the point of smothering
- Fear of being alone/not in a relationship
When is it time to get help?
If you find you are unable to, and uninterested in maintaining a long-term relationship, but aren’t at ease without being in a relationship, it may be time to connect with a therapist. If you get bored easily after the thrill of the chase or the adrenaline of a new relationship, or you are repeatedly told that you are overly needy or smother your partner – you may have an unhealthy dependence.
Treatment methods for relationship dependence
- Behaviour Therapy tends to view human beings and behaviour with the assumption that humans are a product of their sociocultural conditioning and environment, looking at the current problems and the factors influencing them and emphasizes behaviour changes more than the underlying unconscious processes.
- Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT) is an evidence-based approach to treatment that focuses on how people’s thoughts, emotions, and beliefs influence their behaviour and how they perceive themselves.
- Existential Therapy is focused on providing the client with a greater understanding of themselves including self-development, and self-awareness. This therapy works on the individual’s unique set of choices and the meaning behind them, making them know they can’t blame their decisions and the repercussions entirely on past conditioning and/or genetics.
What will I get out of treatment with Insight Psychological?
If dependence is affecting your life, you should know that you’re not alone. Our therapists utilize a variety of effective treatment methods that can support you on your journey to finding healthy ways to cope, to stop self-medicating and to reclaim your life. With time and the proper support, it is possible to work through your relationship or love dependence and be able to sustain a lasting relationship. However, the type of support and treatment varies from person to person. Your therapist will work with you to determine the best plan for your needs.