Why Do We Get Into These Relationships?

Exactly where does this gigantic hole in my heart come from?  What created it?  Why does it keep sucking me in?

It is my hope that if you have some idea why you have a propensity towards dependent relationships, you will have some grace on yourself.  Just because you have found yourself enmeshed with another woman doesn’t mean you need to label yourself beyond hope or, “born gay.”

Secondarily, identifying the roots of emotional dependency will help you understand why this is not something that can be solved overnight.  A seed can’t be, “cured” of it’s diminutive size. You won’t have someone cast a demon out of you and find yourself free forever more. The dependency habit won’t go away just because you met the, “right person.” You won’t say just say a special prayer and be emotionally healthy. If that were possible, we could pray for such things as an instant college diploma or a sudden healing to the extra 30 pounds we have put on since high school. We are people in process, and there is a beginning, middle and END.

  1. Because we are disconnected with ourselves.  We can define this disconnection in two areas:  Self-image, Self-care.       Self-image: If we find a way to approve of ourselves based on God’s view of us, we can stand against our desired to look to another person to define us and make us feel valuable.  Knowing who we are helps us enjoy our own company, rather than dreading alone time.     Self-care: Neglecting ourselves leaves us with a vague feeling of loss that we seek to fill, and somehow certain people make that hunger subside for awhile. Caring for self includes hobbies, solitude, regular doctor visits, nutrition, introspection and reading. 
  2. Because of excessive loneliness and isolation As humans, our hunger for belonging and for love refuses to be ignored!  God knows that we can’t function without connection, and it’s not His plan to leave us to ourselves.  He has provided for our interpersonal needs, but we must put forth the risk to do relationship according to his guidelines.  If we do not find a way to get our interpersonal need met, we WILL find some way to anesthetize our  pain. Isolation is shattered by church attendance, selflessness, accountability, hospitality, service, forgiveness, and sincerity.  He offers us His family!  Psalms 68:6  “God sets the lonely in families.”Galatians 6:10  “Therefore, as we have opportunity, let us do good to all people, especially to those who belong to the family of believers.”
  3. Because we are making up for lost time.  If we look back into our childhood, we will find that there was a definite absence of essential female contact.  We were not close to our mothers, or somehow didn’t identify with her.  We had troubles fitting in with the other girls, because our interests were different or because we had a lack of social skills.  These missing experiences have created a huge hole in our hearts.  When another woman finally comes alongside us and starts making up for these losses, it feels wonderful!
  4. Because we look to people to meet our needs, instead of God.  Our hearts just naturally tend towards idols that can be seen, heard and felt.  Only God can tell us who we are, love us perfectly and be the object of all our worship.  (see illustration)
  5. Because we are fallen humans with a bent towards sin.  It is important to mention this, because not all sin comes from the wrong and lack around us.  It comes from within us.  Even if all of our needs are met and even if we grew up with every advantage, we would still find ourselves weak in certain areas. Psalm 51:5 “Surely I was sinful at birth, sinful from the time my mother conceived me.”

 

A easy way to remember these concepts is that they are the opposite of the what Jesus called the the, “Greatest Commandments.” Matthew 22:37-38 Jesus replied, “‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.'” This is the first and greatest commandment.  And the second is like it: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’

If we love God with all of our heart, we won’t turn to people to be our sufficiency.  If we love our neighbor, we are in relationship with numerous people around us.  If we love ourselves, we will take the trouble to do maintenance on our souls and bodies.

In accountability relationships where women are successfully overcoming, a large portion of their conversation revolves around shoring up these weaknesses. The concepts here are the bulls-eye for overcoming emotional dependency.