Why Hyper-Vigilance Ruins Relationships

by on Mar. 26, 2020

Divorce & Family Law 

Summary: Learn How Hyper-Vigilance Can Ruin an Otherwise Healthy Marriage.

Why Hyper-Vigilance Ruins Relationships

In contemporary western society, the odds of staying with your first romantic partner for the rest of your natural life are not high. Indeed the odds of staying with the first person you meet are pretty low. People fail in relationships for all kinds of reasons. Sometimes, the breakups we have can feel shatteringly painful. Break-ups can and do lead to severe depression, and sometimes even suicide. Love can definitely hurt, and anyone who has ever suffered a broken heart will agree. 

Once you've been hurt in love, it can be incredibly hard to build up the courage to trust someone again. If you feel you were mistreated in a previous relationship. it is natural to worry about whether or not the next person you love will also hurt you in the same way. For instance, if your ex cheated, you might be concerned that the new person you have started dating will also be unfaithful to you. 

In the event that you were cheated on a second and then even third time, you might start to see a pattern developing. You might also start to believe in a statement that is not universally true, but that is accurate in your experience. For example, you might begin to develop the perception that all men/women cheat in love. This is not a universal truth. Some people have never cheated on any of their partners. However, because it seems true in your experience, you may start to become hyper-vigilant about the idea of your partner cheating and begin thinking about divorce or a legal separation.

Hyper-vigilance is linked to Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD). If you're hyper-vigilant, it is probably bad news for any romantic relationship you are in or are considering having. If you are hyper-vigilant in your relationship, you will be on guard and watching intently for any hint of the behavior that hurt you in the past. You will approach your relationship from a perspective of high-anxiety. You may even become controlling and insist on making your partner accountable for his or her every move. Indeed, hyper-vigilance will only have the impact of repelling all and any potentially loving and morally upstanding partners you may otherwise have attracted. Nobody enjoys being controlled, labeled or stereotyped in a relationship. We all want to be judged according to our own personal merits and detriments, not those of another person who has hurt our partner in the past. 

So, what should you do if you think you are hyper-vigilant in romantic relationships due to trauma suffered in the past? Giving up on love is not an option. There is an old adage which asserts that no man or woman is an island. Most of us enjoy being in a loving relationship, and you deserve to experience this, too. However, it is a very good idea to break the cycle you are currently trapped in. If not, you are very likely to keep repeating the same behavior and provoking the same outcome indefinitely.

In order to break the cycle and learn to approach romantic relationships from a healthy angle, put your love life on hold for a while. Instead, make it your objective to seek some counseling for your problem. Talking to a therapist and seeking treatment for PTSD before looking for love again will really increase your potential to have a healthy, loving romantic relationship at some stage in the future. Your future self will certainly thank you for it. 

Hyper-vigilant behavior can completely ruin what could otherwise be healthy, loving relationships. Nobody responds well to such behavior from their partner because it feels unfair. Yet, there is always hope in the form of psychotherapy for any individual who has suffered PTSD as a result of being in a traumatic relationship. You simply need to be willing to seek out the help that you need.

If you are considering a divorce or legal separation, you should contact the Arizona family law attorneys at Hildebrand Law, PC.

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