Unintentional Precipitators of Breakups
Johnny broke up with Jane. Jane thought they were enjoying getting to know one another. She thought there was some real potential for romance. She thought she was playing it smart. Jane wasn’t aware that something she did caused Johnny to split prematurely.
Get ready to familiarize yourself with the most common accidental causes of breakups. If there is any future breaking up to do, you want to be the one to do it deliberately and with forethought.
Careful reading of this article followed by honest soul-searching will put you more in charge of your romantic destiny.
A Self-Fulfilling Prophecy
If you think a love interest will dump you, he/she might very well fulfill your prophecy. Don’t think this happens because you have great insight and, therefore, have accurately predicted Johnny or Jane’s behavior. Research proves that in numerous instances, an individual actually sets up the conditions for a breakup. If you expect another person to reject rather than accept you, evidence shows your behavior will encourage that very outcome.
This well may be you they are talking about, especially if you happen to be one of those people who:
Overreact to rejection.
Are anxious about the possibility of being rejected.
Have high rejection expectations.
Are ready to accept rejection.
The stats prove that if you have a high sensitivity to rejection, expect to break up more often than those who don’t particularly if you are a women. Social scientists conjecture that men who are rejection sensitive may not allow themselves to be put in a questionable position and, consequently, won’t begin a flirtation.
Individuals with low self-esteem very often think they will automatically be rejected.
According to those who have scrutinized the self-fulfilling prophecy, here’s how it could work.
Johnny and Jane have a small argument. Let’s say, rejection sensitive Jane was late getting ready for their date. The movie Johnny wanted to see was sold out by the time they got to the theater. Jane misinterprets his quiet disappointment as a sign that he is rejecting her. Like many people who think that rejection is inevitable, Jane becomes frustrated, angry, and hostile. Her behavior adds a sour note to Johnny’s disappointment and reduces the pleasure either of them gets out of the evening. If the scene is repeated too many times, the relationship isn’t likely to be satisfying to Johnny who then tells himself I want outa’ here!
Too Much Need, Too Little Caring
This discovery by researchers may hit home. In the infatuation and passionate stages of love’s beginning, it is natural to be concerned with one’s own needs. How you feel, what makes you happy, if your attraction is reciprocated, if your hopes or fears will be realized, and whether you achieve sexual satisfaction is first and foremost in your mind. Your partner’s needs at this early stage of romance are secondary. If this preoccupation with oneself continues, however, the relationship will not grow the way you hoped it might.
Unless partners switch focus from themselves and their personal needs to caring for and fulfilling the other person’s needs, intimacy surely won’t develop. Without this necessary ingredient, love will die on the vine.
Johnny met Jane, who awakened his libido and raced his heart. He set about to sell himself to her and spoke endlessly about his achievements. He forgot to ask about Jane’s. He took her to all his favorite places but had no idea what she liked. He was so preoccupied with himself he failed to stop and focus on Jane. Although there was enough chemistry to land them both in bed and make Johnny blissfully happy, Jane broke it off shortly thereafter. Without the opportunity to tell her story, reveal a thing about herself, have her needs even slightly met, or feel close with Johnny, the relationship was flat and unsatisfying.
Forcing the Issue
You may not think you are pressing for too much too soon but your partner may. People who force the issue prematurely bring up words like commitment, relationship, or marriage. They ask, Where is this relationship going? before love has had ample time to take hold. Then they employ psychobabble to explain away their love interest’s indecision or unwillingness to commit.
This time Jane fell for Johnny, who had been divorced and subsequently engaged. They dated for several months, took two or three vacations together; and then one night in bed, Jane told Johnny she was looking for a relationship that would evolve into marriage.
The mere mention of marriage scared him away. Within days, Johnny, who was far from ready to make a pledge of undying love, started using breakup lines like There is something missing in our relationship. I can’t put my finger on it. But something is definitely missing.
His inability to explain himself more fully exasperated Jane. She responded by escalating the situation and issuing an ultimatum just the way Johnnys know Janes will once they have used the C, R, or M words: Decide where this is going. If it’s nowhere, I don’t want to see you anymore, she said.
The words were spoken, and when Johnny would not come up with a definitive answer, Jane had no option but to see her threat through. Her take on the whole thing was, Johnny has problems with relationships. Unless he gets help and finds the basis of his hang-up, he’ll never be healthy enough to have a relationship.
Playing Your Sexual Cards Poorly
No one wants to know your complete sexual history unless it pertains to your present state of health. Spill too much and your relationship may be in jeopardy. If your partner feels like he/she is one among a hundred lovers, there won’t be any reason to feel flattered by your pursuit. Men and women want to think they are your one and only even when they are fully aware that isn’t a possibility.
Men especially interpret a woman’s sexual aggressiveness either as a sign that she has done this too many times before or that she is trying to trap him into an intimate relationship.
Johnny and Jane were fixed up by friends who said complimentary things about both of them. They went out a few times and at the end of the third evening together, Johnny was certain Jane wanted to spend the night. She made herself right at home, slipped provocatively out of her jeans, and went for his zipper.
The next morning he called his friend and whispered into the phone, Thanks a lot. It was a hoot having a dominant sexual female for a change, but I don’t see anything else happening here. If I started to care about her, it would bother me thinking that she had slept around quite a bit. I know I am not her first, but I sure hope I wasn’t her 31st either.
Lying to Your Man
A man’s reaction to a woman’s lie is the opposite of hers. According to Dr. Dory Hollander’s observations, men will either challenge the female liar, find her antics amusing and even sexy, or end the relationship. If a lie threatens or damages his power and dominance, he may slough off the untruth by leaving the relationship. In his mind this gives him control over the situation and restores his dominance.
While visiting her parents in her home town, Jane bumped into her old boyfriend. They met up with some mutual friends and spent a night reminiscing at a popular, crowded bar.
The next night they went to a movie together. The third night he held her hand in a movie, and the fourth night she found herself in his arms.
When Johnny picked her up at the airport he asked her how her week went. She said fine. When he inquired whether she had gone out with friends, she mentioned her girlfriends by name and said they were the only old friends she saw. Not long after, Johnny overheard Jane giving someone a more accurate description of her social life at home. He shrunk under the weight of the discovery. The fact that she lied to him was of more serious consequence than her innocent indiscretion. Within a week, he confronted Jane and told her he wasn’t interested in a woman who lied to him. No matter how she protested that it was an insignificant leap into the past, Johnny was not about to give her a second chance. No one lies to Johnny and gets away with it!
Dressing Up in Desperate Clothing.
A significant number of men will assume that women are desperate for a partner and run the other way after a few dates if you:
Give any sign of needing someone to rescue you from financial uncertainty.
Are over 30 and never married.
Aren’t holding down a lucrative job.
Have children but don’t get sizable childcare payments.
Never offer to pay for a vacation or buy him a gift.
Complain about your living expenses.
Johnny met Jane at a church mixer for singles. They had an interesting conversation, discovered several mutual interests, and found one another attractive. Without revealing anything more about themselves, they made a date for later in the week. Jane was uncomfortable exposing her two children to her dates and cautiously suggested she meet Johnny at the restaurant he chose for dinner. It wasn’t until they had gone out for nearly a month that Jane felt she knew Johnny well enough to allow him to pick her up at home. He was eager to meet the kids Jane had casually mentioned, but, wisely until this point, did not discuss in detail.
Once she decided she could trust Johnny, she not only gave him access to her home but to her troubles. That’s where she went wrong.
She saw no reason not to fill him full of her woes, her ex-husband’s noncompliance of child support, and the fact that she looked forward to the time when a man would want to share her childrearing responsibilities.
Hit the road Jack, Johnny told himself. He had the distinct impression that any man could pitch hit as Jane’s knight in shining armor. He, however, wanted a woman who proved she loved him and only him. Anyone in her dire circumstances would have had a tough time convincing him they were capable of such pure love.
Love is a human need. Studies show that the most independent among us seek it, thrive on it, and find happiness in it. On the other hand, dependent individuals have been shown to need it to survive. Inadequacies in their personality promote an unhealthy journey into love. They form excessive, fixated attachments that suffocate their lovers. They depend upon these individuals to protect them against the pain and distress their inadequacies cause them. Unfortunately, these liabilities turn off prospective long-term love interests.
Put Johnny and Jane into whichever role suits your fancy. The story works either way.
Johnny was a great-looking, shy, underachiever, devoid of self confidence who, nonetheless, caught every woman’s eye. Jane was the most recent woman to give him a nod. He was flattered by the attention of this self-sufficient, successful business-woman. When he was with her, his chest inflated with pride. He wanted her constantly by his side. Her presence and reassurance was essential to his well-being.
Jane, however, had a busy schedule and found Johnny’s needs cumbersome and tiring. He was leaning on her too much, pressing her into verifying her attraction too often and expressed too much anxiety when they were apart. In order to breathe in sufficient fresh air she saw no other option than to separate herself from him.