For some, the need to fix others can be overpowering, we want to fix what we perceive to be broken or not working properly. The need to fix others can often be seen in romantic relationships, one partner feels the other may need a little work in order to make him/her a better person or better partner in the relationship. One problem with this is that the other person may not want fixing or may not even see a need to be fixed. Partners that are in a relationship with someone they perceive to require fixing are doomed to experience a failed relationship. Healthy relationships consist of mutual respect, love, and acceptance between partners. Relationships that include one partner feeling that the other is not good enough as they are and require work to make them more acceptable often leads to frustration, sadness, anger, and resentment. Most people wish to be loved for who they are not by what the other partner can make them into.
Unfortunately, a lot of fixers struggle with unresolved issues of past childhood abuse. Some individuals that have been abused as children have difficulty managing negative feelings associated from the abuse. Persons with an abused past are more likely than those without and abused past to struggle with low self-esteem, depression, anxiety, low self-worth, etc. Abuse occurring in childhood has the ability to cause both immediate and long-term negative consequences. Some survivors of childhood abuse have difficulty accepting the abuse was not their fault, many believe it was their fault that they were abused. As some believe the abuse was their fault, they begin to internalize they are not loveable, not good enough, and display a compulsion to save or fix others. Once in adulthood some survivors will project their damaged selves onto others. Many will see themselves as flawed, therefore, in need of repair. He or she will unconsciously attempt to fix others, thereby fixing themselves. As humans we have a tendency to gravitate toward the familiar, we gravitate towards damaged people because we ourselves may be damaged. We may be used to damage as that is what we can relate to and what we are comfortable with.
Growing up in an unhealthy environment creates challenges for someone that grew up in a dysfunctional home with relating to others in a healthy environment. Dysfunctional environments limits opportunities for healthy learning, development of appropriate learning skills, and healthy adjustment. When we encounter individuals such as potential partners that were raised in a healthy environment, we sometimes have challenges knowing how to act or what to say around them. Ironically, for some people raised in a dysfunctional home, he or she may feel there is something wrong with the person that came from a healthier upbringing.
Reasons We Desire to Fix Others Include:
We want to be their savior We want to fix what is broken or not working We like the thrill of the challenge They make us feel needed We feel special when we are able to change the lives of others We see ourselves in them By fixing someone else we unconsciously fic ourselves We thrive the unpredictability of seeing the impact of our work on someone else We desire the feeling of gratefulness of the individual we fixed. We want to make them better for us We want them to feel indebted to us
Although, there is nothing wrong with having the desire to help others, we must not do so for selfish reasons, such as, changing them into someone else. Not all things perceived to be broken have a desire to be fixed, either we accept them as they are, or leave them how we have found them. Loving a broken or damaged person is not a bad thing, everyone in this world deserves to be loved and to experience love, but loving someone, damaged or not, who is not amenable to your effort to change can be difficult for a fixer to accept. Relationships should be centered around a love that sharpens both people, a love that holds onto the goodness of each individual and constantly works to bring that out of each of them. Some broken things have sharp edges that proves difficult and dangerous to fix, so it is best to accept those things and persons for who and what they are.