Women who love too much – book review
“Women who love too much” is a brilliant book written by Robin Norwood. I would suggest anyone who has issues with picking problematic partners to read it.
The book describes people (and it is mostly women) who develop certain needs by growing up in problematic households. One of the examples is when a woman grew up in a family with emotionally distant father, she will have tendency to find that kind of a partner in the adulthood due to the underlying need to save someone (because she couldn’t change/save her father she feels saving a problematic partner will fulfill her life). The other example is when a woman, who grew up with an alcoholic father, tends to pick a partner with similar problems. Again, the same subconscious need.
This is not a general rule and is not applied to absolutely everyone but very often people become “saviors” to heal their childhood inabilities. That is the part of our personalities we learn to recognize by reading this book.
How to recognize if you have a personality of a savior
Having a “savior” mentality should be pretty obvious, but to many of us it is not because there is one tricky thing here – we are “happy” when we need to save someone. If some nice, caring and stable guy/girl came along, there would be no value in that relationship. It is almost as if our brains are programmed to be saviors and if there is no one to save, then there is no relationship.
I guess I became aware of this phenomenon in my last relationship when one day I heard the exact same excuses my boyfriend gave me which I’ve heard my dad saying to my mom when I was a kid. The same situation and sorry lines. But although I was becoming more and more aware how this is a relationship that ultimately will never make me happy, it wasn’t easy to end this problematic relationship. I felt sorry for the guy and I wanted to make him see that he has to change.
My endless conversations with him to make him realize what he is doing wrong and convince him to change resulted in a dead-end. There was no realization, no change, no nothing. Everything stayed exactly the same even though I spent years in trying to change him. My savior part of me has failed.
If you are trying constantly to change someone and if you have a thought that your love can and will change your partner, then most definitely you have a personality of a savior.
What I’ve learned from the book “Women who love too much”
Before I read this book, I’d had a feeling of being a failure. Most of my friends and relatives were married, had kids and some even divorced in a reasonable period of their lives whereas I am still single, no kids and no divorce. But after reading this book, I’ve realized what my problem is and how to approach it. Also, I realized that my mentality is programmed and that I need to do something to change it. As a kid I didn’t have much choice, but now I should and must do something if I want to achieve healthy relationship.
So, it is important to constantly practice awareness of having a savior mentality. Besides that, I am practicing acceptance of other people’s personalities so that I can accept a good guy when one comes along.
Past stays in the past and everyone is responsible for their own lives right now. We cannot save anyone. Not even a higher power can save anyone. Only each of us can do it for ourselves.