Keeping your insecurities from your past relationship from hurting your current relationship is easier said than done. As human beings, we use our past experiences to help us decide how to act in future situations. This can be helpful for many things but it can also hold us back from really thriving, especially in relationships. For example, if you’ve been cheated on in the past, you might finding yourself expecting your current partner to cheat as if it’s a given which is neither true nor helpful. If you’ve been hurt in a past relationship, being vulnerable and trusting in your present relationship can be challenging at times. How do you keep your past relationship hurts from spoiling your present relationship?
One important step to helping you overcome your insecurities is to figure out whether it’s your insecurities that are contributing to your mistrust of your significant other or whether there are really warning signs present in your current relationship that are leading you to mistrust your significant other.
For example, if you were cheated on in a past relationship, you are probably very focused on noticing any evidence that your current partner might be cheating on you. When they stay late at work, do you find yourself wondering if they are really at work like they say they are? In this case, it is helpful to ask yourself, are these my insecurities whispering doubts in my ear or do I have concrete evidence that something is going on. If your significant other hasn’t given you any other reasons to doubt the truth of what they are telling you but you are still doubting, it’s very likely that your doubt comes from your insecurities stemming from your past relationships.
Plus, letting your mind continue to wander down the “what if they aren’t being faithful” path only makes things worse. When you don’t challenge your doubts and allow your insecurities to take over your thoughts, you’re likely to find yourself going deeper and deeper into doubts. And when your insecurities take over, you start finding “evidence” for being insecure when there might not be any real merit to your suspicions. This just leaves you feeling more stressed out and less secure about where your relationship stands.
Before your mind jumps to the worst-case scenario, try to take an outsider’s perspective and examine the situation. Taking an outsider’s perspective is important because it helps you to remove the effects of your past relationships as much as possible when you are examining the situation. It’s tricky to do but it will really help you in the long run. Your current significant other isn’t the same person as your past significant others. So assuming they are going to react the same way isn’t fair to them and you aren’t giving them a chance to prove that they are trustworthy.
Remember that no one is perfect and that, just because you hit a few hurdles here and there when communicating with your significant other, doesn’t mean that there is something wrong with your relationship. If something really bothers you about a situation with your significant other, bring it up to them in a non-accusatory way. Try using empathy which usually makes discussing difficult topics easier. Don’t be afraid to share with your significant other why you think you have these insecurities and work together to come up with a plan to help your insecurities fade to the background.
Finally, it might be helpful to ask yourself why you have these insecurities. What do your past relationships have in common that have contributed to your feelings of insecurities? Did you ignore the warning signs of an unhealthy relationship such as controlling behavior? Identifying why you feel insecure can help you to figure out if your current relationship has any of these warning signs. And, if it doesn’t, you can use this to your advantage to fight back against your insecurities when they pop up from time to time.
Sometimes, it’s hard to take an outsider’s perspective on what is happening in your life. Asking a trusted friend or family member can be helpful. If you think that you might benefit from professional help, you can always seek out the services of a psychotherapist. You can also make a conscious effort to increase the level of trust in your relationship by working to improve your communication with one another, be vulnerable, and invest in your relationship. These changes can take time but the result will be very rewarding.
You deserve to be free from your insecurities and you deserve to be part of a healthy relationship. Don’t be afraid to face your fear and commit to the hard work to be more confident in your relationship. You are worth it!
- Psych Corner: How Past Relationships Impact Current Relationships - November 17, 2016
- How Past Trauma Affects Current Relationships (And What You Can Do About It) - November 7, 2016
- Psych Corner: How To Help A Friend In An Abusive Relationship - October 12, 2016