It seems so simple – two people are attracted to each other, and they either get along and the relationship grows or not, so they break up and move on. But how often do relationships actually work this way?
People tend to be drawn to the familiar. Whether it's a former boyfriend, your mom, dad, or brother — regardless of how crazy they may have been — you've become an expert in managing life alongside them. It was tough, but you learned how to handle (or elegantly avoid) them.
Craziness no longer scares you. Maybe you've played a key role in maintaining sanity in your family, and if so, you may take pride in that. You've survived and mastered that challenge; now it is familiar, even comfortable, to you.
Sometimes you're with somebody, not for all the rational reasons you think, but because that person meets your subconscious need. The problem is that it can create a bad dynamic.
If you're struggling with depression or boredom, a "drama queen" (or king) makes you feel alive and turns your life into a roller coaster. If you're a wallflower, a charming narcissist might help your social status, but he's hell to live with.
Once you get together with the devil you know, you might find yourself hooked on his or her drama. The dynamics of co-dependency are complex. While the tremendous costs of your relationship are obvious to everyone,
you may also get a significant hidden psychological "kick" out of the relationship. This can affect your brain just like an addictive substance does!
Low self-esteem is another huge factor in staying together with a bad match. Many prefer staying with someone who is not good for them to be alone.
Abusive partners have a way of getting into your head. They have their own version of reality and blame you for everything. Consequently, you might find yourself going back and forth between believing it's all your fault and realizing it isn't.