CAN YOU PROTECT YOURSELF WHEN IT COMES TO LOVE? | Relationship Psychologist Washington DC

Dr. Marie Land LLC | Psychologist Washington DC | Relationship Therapist

There are all types of tricks. Ways to use your mind and thoughts to set yourself up for a healthy relationship. You’ve made mistakes before. You’ve broken hearts and had your heart broken. Now you’ve learned. You know the logic and the specific ways to prevent yourself from being hurt the way you did with the last relationship. Or perhaps you have this wisdom from your first relationship when your high school boyfriend totally surprised you by doing a complete 180. One day he loved you and the next he loved his ex, or his car, or fantasy football. The truth is, how can we ever completely expect another person to be fully consistent and reliable? We can barely do it for ourselves so as sad as it makes me when people are surprised by how hurt they are by a partner, I am in fact never surprised. People change. YOU change. Walking through life pretending that love and relationships are a type of foundation that is like cement on the pavement does nothing to protect yourself. SOUND DISMAL? IT’S NOT!

People want to know if there is any way to protect their heart when it comes to love and relationships. In short- No. You can’t. You can make better choices and increase the likelihood of doing your part in controlling the outcome of a relationship by making it positive, healthy, whatever your goal is. In fact, I encourage you to try to not make mistakes you previously did. The thing is, after you’ve been through a series of break-ups you probably realized that the whole getting hurt (even if it means you were the one that ended it. That is very painful for most with some sense of empathy as well) thing should be avoided if possible. Maybe you’ve talked with your friends about various methods. Don’t let him know you care too much. Try to keep the control and power. Manipulation and self-protection can do wonders for temporary anxiety relief. But if you really want a good relationship, you have to come to terms with a fact.


There is not some short-cut path to obtaining a loving relationship without feeling a little vulnerable, or being somewhat afraid. Without knowing that you can fall over a cliff plummeting down a horrendous drop. And no, that doesn’t mean that you should give up everything to be with someone in order to be totally “in it.” But it does mean that if you are to experience something truly wonderful, you’re going to have to give up some of your self-protection methods, games, and attempts to hide your feelings for fear of being hurt. In general I’d say it’s safe to say that none of us want to be wasting our time with someone who is not on the same page. That can mean if you’re looking for something casual or a long-term relationship. Why not waste your time or someone else’s and be real, knowing that it could end horribly…or maybe, just maybe give you the relationship you’ve been looking for. The ability to face your fears in love is a wonderful gift- and I see no other way!