Repeating Relationship Patterns – You’re Dating Your Parent

Repeating Relationship Patterns –  You’re Dating Your Parent

On this video, Alan Robarge, Relationship Coach and Psychotherapist, talks about reoccurring relationship patterns and looks at how these patterns get set up in our early, formative years during childhood. We repeat what we know. We repeat what is familiar. We learn some good skills when growing up, and then also, learn some not so good skills. Most of us are not able to fully question or examine the underlying assumptions and expectations that come with these skills we inherit. We just assume that our way of relating is “normal.”

Healing is about becoming more conscious about the skills we inherited and parsing out what we learned that was either helpful or not helpful to us as adults. When looked at closely, we can easily see that many of the family rules we learned in childhood were channeled or interpreted from the point of view of our younger, developing self – our child self. So this means we are using rules endorsed or believed by our child-self point of view without actually questioning if these rules and beliefs are what we want to endorse or follow today.

Most families do not have built into their communication system a way to receive feedback for adapting to change. This means that most families collectively do not strive for healthier relating. They stay stuck in their usual ways of relating. The family system often times stays at equilibrium and doesn’t change.

This approach of non-change continues to play out on an individual level in our adult relationships. Even if most of us set out to do something different other than what we learned in our family, chances are we end up repeating the same pattern. We end up finding partners who remind us of our parents.

Sometimes we assign meaning to these reoccurring patterns. We think that a reoccurring pattern means that we are able to rework the old scenario of relating and experience a corrective experience. People can confuse themselves with this type of belief. We need to be careful not to be under the influence of denial which means we are justifying bad relationships by convincing ourselves that we need to learn some lesson.

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I offer Attachment-Focused, Trauma Informed Relationship Coaching and Psychotherapy for Individuals and Couples. I work with adult clients dealing with relationship challenges or failures, lack of purpose, emotional-developmental trauma, and loneliness. I help clients solve problems, feel feelings, and get unstuck. I work with clients via telephone and video-conferencing.

I also offer a membership community called Improve Your Relationships. The community provides a structured and reoccurring 8-week program of helpful conversations, learning, and support; it offers resources, worksheets, and videos. It promotes a model of self-directed healing and invites self-accountability. To join us and learn more go to

Remember… emotional connections matter!

Alan Robarge, LPC
Attachment Focused, Trauma Informed
Psychotherapist and Relationship Coach

Repeating Relationship Patterns – You’re Dating Your Parent