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I’m Ruining My Own Relationship

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From the U.S.: Me and my boyfriend have been dating for about 10 months. We live two and a half hours away from each other until I graduate from college in May, but we still see each other every weekend and I stay with him whenever I have breaks. He is an amazing guy who obviously loves and cares about me a lot. Even though I know this, I will still find reasons to get upset, sometimes creating problems out of thin air.

For example, last weekend, I dropped my earring in the floor and I got upset with him for not trying to help me find it. I over think simple things like that, and make it mean something obscure in my head. Like that he doesn’t love me enough or care about me enough and that our relationship isn’t going to work out.

I was drinking that night, and when I drink, it usually makes me over think more, but similar things happen when I’m sober, too. Right now, I see how ridiculous that is, but in the moment, I’m so caught up in my emotions that I can’t recognize how minuscule the issue is.

Everything in my head is over exaggerated. From that point on, it’s easy for things to blow up even more and it’s almost impossible to get me out of that mindset. I constantly threaten to break up with him, even though I know if we broke up, it would break my heart. Lately, I’ve gotten more aggressive and I will scream and throw things. This weekend I was so upset I was hyperventilating.

I love this guy. I don’t know why I do this to myself. I’m afraid he will eventually get fed up with my “tantrums”. If I was him, I probably would have left me a long time ago. I tell myself that I’m going to calm down and stop over thinking, but it always happens again. The next day, I always feel guilty and embarrassed for behaving that way, but in the moment it feels rational. I know I have anxiety issues, but I’m wondering if it’s something deeper than just anxiety.

Thank you for your help!

I’m Ruining My Own Relationship

Answered by on -


I’m very glad you wrote. Recognizing a problem is the first step toward fixing it. It would be a shame to end a very promising relationship like this one because you lose it for unknown reasons.

If this happened only when you are drinking, the answer would be simple. Stop drinking. Not everyone can handle alcohol. Some people are nasty when they drink too much. You may be one of them. But you say this also happens when you are sober. That suggests a more fundamental issue.

My only guess is that you are “testing” your boyfriend with your tantrums. If he puts up with this behavior, you may believe that it means he loves you and won’t leave. But as you point out, you may very well create the very situation you fear. No matter how much he cares for you, your boyfriend may understandably decide your tantrums are too much for him.

I suggest you make an appointment with a therapist to talk this over. If you are “testing”, it is probably grounded in some past experience where you felt betrayed or left. With the help of a counselor, you can deal with the insecurity and learn to trust again.

I hope you will follow through and work on this. Your boyfriend deserves better. You deserve to feel more secure in love.

I wish you well.
Dr. Marie

I’m Ruining My Own Relationship

Therapists live, online right now, from BetterHelp:

Dr. Marie Hartwell-Walker

Dr. Marie is licensed as both a psychologist and marriage and family counselor. She specializes in couples and family therapy and parent education. Follow her on Facebook or Twitter.

APA Reference
Hartwell-Walker, D. (2018). I’m Ruining My Own Relationship. Psych Central. Retrieved on November 26, 2020, from
Scientifically Reviewed
Last updated: 8 May 2018 (Originally: 18 May 2016)
Last reviewed: By a member of our scientific advisory board on 8 May 2018
Published on Psych All rights reserved.