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Why do I compare everyone to my bad relationship?

136 Answers
Last Updated: 01/27/2022 at 10:40am
1 Tip to Feel Better
United States
Moderated by

Jackie Dross, M.S. Community Counseling


I have a passion for working with people from a non-judgmental, strengths based approach to meet their goals for personal growth.

Top Rated Answers
November 1st, 2020 8:13am
Why do you compare everyone to your bad relationship? :-) It's reflection! Maybe you're feeling insecure, feel uncomfortable... If you're in a bad relationship, then you feel every day be worse, likely you're in need of something you're not getting with this relationship. It could be anything, really a lot of things. Love with Trust and Security are major possibilities of something you're missing. And when you see those things displayed in other people (with their relationships which is looks very nice), you crave it. Really, I would need more information about your situations clearly to take a better analyze, I am not in your shoes. Because I always see my own mirror, keep my positive self-talk, and i realize that comparing about our life with each others is killing. :-)
June 14th, 2017 1:12pm
It is only normal to compare the present to past experiences. It's actually human instinct. The best way to get past it is to tell yourself "that's the past, that's a different person."
May 27th, 2020 2:19am
Comparing is because you want to be better or to show that you are not weak and important. You also want to make sure everything and everyone is like you so you don’t have to hide. This is why we can chat! Just chatting really helps. You can also get help on the growth path. It includes short and calming exercises that help you grow stronger. I recommend taking one step a day. We are our own selves and we do not need to compare. People who bully are because they are jelous where bullied before! I hope this helps ;)
June 22nd, 2016 6:53pm
Could it be you are afraid of getting hurt that way again, so you are looking for the warning signs?
July 8th, 2016 4:11am
Sometimes when you go through something tough, like a bad relationship, especially if it is your first relationship, then you believe that is the standard for a relationship. You may go searching for a relationship like that or not want to be in a relationship that isn't like that. It is always good to be aware of what type of relationship you are in and that it is not harmful to you.
September 10th, 2016 3:45am
Past experiences can make you less trusting of something. It's completely common for that to happen as we think that the same thing might happen again. But you have to realize that this is a new person than the one from your past bad relationships. If you keep thinking that bad history will repeat itself, then it will be harder for you to move on and start fresh on things, so it's better to let go.
September 20th, 2019 2:39pm
We can challenge our perspective to see this comparison with other eyes. How? With a question. What if you're not just comparing, but you're actually perceiving what qualities are lacking in your own relationship? If we unravel the meaning of comparison, you arrive to the conclusion that you're just discerning with your natural intuition whatever is lacking in your life. Despite knowing that comparisons do not always involve something intuitive that is positive, in this case, you even state that you're in a bad relationship, which confirms that you're just aware of what you deserve. Discernment and awareness can come from understanding what qualities you perceive in the world that are not being manifested in your life. This is the heart of true comparison.
June 23rd, 2016 7:23pm
You are afraid of having history repeat itself, which is totally reasonable. You just have to acknowledge that that was one bad apple, and there's plenty of better people for you out there.
June 30th, 2016 1:25am
If you've had a bad/abusive relationship, it's natural to expect that everyone you date in the future may turn out the same as the last. People do have a tendency to put their best side forward when relationships are new, but moving along slowly in new relationships tends to be the best key to not expecting bad things to happen.
July 1st, 2016 5:21am
Once you have been hurt by a bad relationship, it is hard not to compare others to that previous relationship. You have to learn that everyone is not like the person you were once in a relationship with. That all relationships are different and have there ups and downs. Does not mean you will be hurt again in the same matter.
July 1st, 2016 12:17pm
There are many factors coming into play when comparing others to your bad experience. First off, it's a very natural thing to do. When we experience something horrible, we want to make sure the next time is better. Our psyche tends to focus on the negative more automatically as well, so we are "looking out" for these things. Consciously or unconsciously. But in that vein, it can be harmful to you if you are looking out for signs that have been part of your experience with someone else, which may or may not be any problem with the other people at all. So when you compare "everyone", the question is - are you being fair to them? It may be you need to take your time and let go of the past experience, take the lessons you need, and leave the rest. This can be a long process, but it allows you to move on. It may be you are recognizing a behaviour pattern you are allowing others to have around you which is harmful to you (in which case you need to challenge that) It may be you are just worried about having more negative experiences and it's okay after you thought it through for each person. It's perfectly okay to be honest with that thought process to your friends.
July 3rd, 2016 11:35pm
You might compare everyone to your bad relationship because it was a negative experience thats at the back of your mind, it may make you think if its happened before it can happen again but try to remember not everyone is like the person who was involved in the bad relationship you had, and in time it will be easier to deal with, once you've accepted and realised that its understandable why you compare it but you can also move on from it, not everyone will treat you negatively x
July 8th, 2016 1:20pm
Unfortunately, bad memories tend to stay engraved more in your mind than the good ones. I think it is normal to compare your past relationship with someone else, but don't forget that person is not the same as the other. ;)
July 8th, 2016 5:10pm
There is a saying that goes; "Better the devil you know than the devil you don't know". We sometimes associate with what we know to be true then take a chance on the unknown. To get past this I think you can focus on being more aware (live in the here and now), be accepting (of the past as well as the here and now), and deciding to stick to what you want in life. It isn't always roses and sunshine. But when you live for now, in this moment, you'll see things a whole lot differently. :)
July 9th, 2016 5:45am
Because that is maybe what you believe relationships to be. I went through an abusive relationship and I compare my wonderful relationship now to that one. It was the only one I had ever known so that's what I thought a relationship was.
July 14th, 2016 4:37pm
Its human nature to see the bad in things. From an evolutionary perspective, it's to ensure survival, so in that way its just your mind's way of trying to protect you from further harm.
July 14th, 2016 11:14pm
Sometimes, we compare everyone, our friends, families, loved ones to a bad relationship because we would sometimes feel that everyone else is the same, that if someone does bad to you, they must be just like the person from your bad relationship, even if they may be completely different. We tend to associate people who may do us wrong at one point with people who always did us wrong in a bad relationship because what they have both done were both bad, so they are same in that regard. The only difference is how often they do bad compared to the person in the bad relationship.
July 15th, 2016 2:48am
You probably compare everyone to your bad relationship because you probably were hurt a lot which causes you to have this wall that you don't see anything good
July 20th, 2016 2:30pm
It is rather tempting and normal. When we are not content or insecure about a situation we tend to find others nearby that seem more satisfying and fulfilling. Don't compare your relationship to others though. Work on your current problem which is your personal life. See what is wrong and communicate. When you find yourself happy, comparing won't be something you'll go for. Stay strong
July 22nd, 2016 4:15pm
I feel like it is a natural thing to do after we have had a bad experience. Fear is an essential part of our lives. It keeps us safe and protects us from things that may hurt us. However, sometimes we see danger where there isn't necessarily any. If you have had a bad experience in a previous relationship, it's only natural that you would have that experience in the back of your mind in new relationships. That's your way of protecting yourself. You don't want it to happen again, and as a result, we look for possible signs that it may happen again. It's all a matter of learning to trust ourselves, our judgment, and other people.
July 24th, 2016 2:02pm
Once bitten twice shy. And then it is natural to get skeptic. Normally you invest a lot in a relationship and when it doesn't work the way you foresee it. You end up being skeptical. And negative. I will just say if you are currently unhappy with your outlook then try and change the way view at others. May be baby steps replace the "I don't think it will work" with "what if"
July 27th, 2016 7:19pm
Having a bad relationship is a stressful and tough situation. Even after the relationship ends it's difficult to move past it and learn to trust and love again. Once you experience the hurt of a bad relationship, you tend to feel scared that everyone is going to hurt you like your ex did. In my experience, it's hard to move past it. It takes a lot of positive affirmations to remind yourself that you can and will love and trust again. In time, you'll be able to stop comparing everyone though. You just have to be patient with yourself while you heal.
July 29th, 2016 1:04pm
Hello, it's understandable that you might compare everyone to your bad relationship or relationships. Sometimes bad relationships can really leave a lasting impression on us because in negative relationships a lot of conflict exists between individuals and too often we see the unpleasant sides of another person. Over time, even after the bad relationship is over- we try to protect ourselves by comparing the healthy relationships to the bad relationship in the hopes that we won't be hurt the same way or arguably make the same mistakes.
July 30th, 2016 4:46am
In my opinion you compare everyone to your bad relationship because in away you feel like they have things in common with your partner. You feel like they do the same things and that they act in the same way or maybe they're different from your partner. Maybe just maybe you compare your partner to everyone else because you're trying to tell yourself that your partner is something that they aren't whether it be good or bad
August 7th, 2016 12:52am
Because you're afraid that the person would turn out to be like the last person who might have treated you poorly.
August 11th, 2016 12:02am
If it's your first it might be all you know and think everyone is like that or just someone is better and you regret your bad relationship.
August 11th, 2016 12:50am
Because you are waiting to get hurt again. For them to treat you like they treated you. You don't want to end up in the same situation or another bad relationship so you are trying to analyze everything, protect yourself and make sure it doesn't happen again.
August 11th, 2016 1:57pm
Good Question. Maybe you're feeling insecure. If you're in a bad relationship, likely you're in need of something you're not getting. It could be anything, really. Love and Security are two major possibilities of something you're missing. And when you see those things displayed in other people, you crave it. Really, I would need more information about your situation to take a better guess, but this pops into mind right away.
August 12th, 2016 2:14pm
Because you wish your relationship would as good as theirs it's very normal it would go away as long as you get a better relationship try to avoid comparing by looking at the good things you have or compare yourself with who's worse than your relationship
August 25th, 2016 1:06pm
It has become my standard and what I think my worth is, making it challenging to move past that point to see my true potential.