Why Do I Attract Toxic Relationships

Why Do I Attract Toxic Relationships why do i attract toxic relationships

Do you often find yourself questioning why you keep attracting toxic partners? Are you afraid that deep down, there must be something seriously wrong with you? You might even feel like there’s a sign on top of your head saying, “Are you toxic? If yes, let’s connect.”

In my line of work, helping individuals who’ve been in toxic relationships find peace in life, I’ve interacted with genuinely caring people who meant no harm and just wanted to help. Unfortunately, it doesn’t work that way in the real world, and this mindset might lead you into a narcissistic relationship’s deep end. There are several reasons why you might act like a magnet for toxic relationships.

It’s important to note that anyone can be drawn into a narcissistic relationship, irrespective of their intelligence. This is because narcissistic relationships don’t always begin with the toxic person revealing their manipulative nature outright. Initially, most toxic relationships start with the opposite approach, as the narcissist presents a false self that caters to your needs and validates your experiences and feelings.

When you realize that this was just a facade to draw you in, you’re already in the deep waters, making it difficult to escape. Therefore, it’s crucial to understand certain aspects about ourselves that may be attracting us to toxic relationship patterns. Interestingly, you’ll find that some of your strongest positive qualities could be attracting toxic partners. The factors I’ll discuss are just a few of the reasons that render someone more susceptible to a relationship with a narcissistic person.

Note from the Author

If you’re ready and you’d like my help with healing, finding peace in life and breaking free from these toxic patterns (in less than 2 months) , then you can book a FREE BREAKTHROUGH CALL with me HERE. Happy healing 💙💙. Feel free to share and comment! Use this information with caution, it comes from my own thoughts & bias, experiences and research😊.

Why do we attract toxic people?

1. You’re a Fixer and Believe It’s Your Role to Change People

Have you ever felt that your purpose on this earth is to fix things or change people to “make them better”? If so, this inclination can draw you to toxic people because you seek to fix the “broken.”


Even if that person is making you feel worse, you might hold onto the belief that by doing ABCD, you can transform them into the person you desire. You struggle to leave things as they are. Sometimes, you wish you could just change or control someone. If you excel at solving problems, you may unwittingly find yourself in toxic situations you didn’t expect. Additionally, toxic individuals find this quality attractive, as they can exploit your inclination to help.

Being a fixer might lead you to go into debt, compromise your boundaries, and disregard your needs for the sake of others. In my line of work, I’ve encountered individuals who genuinely believe that it’s their purpose in life to bring toxic people into the light, reinforcing their attraction to such relationships.

While wanting the best for others is admirable, it’s essential to prioritize your own well-being. People can only change when they recognize the need for change, which is rarely the case when dealing with a manipulator.

2. Family History & Familiarity

One constant in life is our subconscious tendency to replicate past patterns. If you were raised in an environment where your childhood needs for safety and love were unmet, or if your parents/guardians were absent, abusive, or overly controlling, you’re more likely to attract similar relationships in adulthood.

This subconscious belief might lead you to think that this is how life is meant to be. You could develop notions like “I don’t deserve respect or to be heard” or “physical abuse or a controlling partner is a sign of love.” These beliefs unconsciously draw you to individuals who embody these patterns, as they trigger emotional experiences and responses from your childhood. You might even find the intense chaos created by a toxic person to be oddly thrilling, producing an adrenaline rush that makes life seem exciting. For instance, if you were raised by narcissistic parents who were controlling and habitually blamed you for their problems, you could unconsciously seek out narcissists in your romantic relationships.

This is because you were conditioned to accept blame and control from a young age. Similarly, if you’ve previously been in a narcissistic relationship, you might be drawn to toxic partners due to their familiarity.


However, seeking a new relationship immediately after leaving a toxic one can be disastrous, as desperation for validation may lead you to ignore red flags. If you’re accustomed to receiving love in small, painful doses, you might feel that this is your norm. Individuals who get aroused by mistreatment are common examples of this pattern.

3. Social Conditioning

We’re all conditioned in various ways by our environments. We often accept and follow societal norms without questioning them. How does this relate to attracting toxic partners?

Time eventually unmasks a narcissist. During the early stages of a relationship, a narcissist dons a mask, but this façade cannot be maintained indefinitely (if it were, we’d all date narcissists). For instance, societal conditioning influences women to seek men with high social status, wealth, and confidence.

These qualities are celebrated, focusing mostly on external traits. Interestingly, these are precisely the characteristics a narcissist projects — charm, social status, power, and excessive confidence. This isn’t to say that these traits are inherently bad, but they can be misleading.

Living in a conditioned state may cause you to overlook vital aspects like how you feel when you’re with someone — do you feel comfortable, loved, and empowered? Narcissists manipulate these societal norms to their advantage. They may appear charming and attractive while hiding their true intentions.

Escaping this trap involves questioning norms and conformity, which can be challenging. Social conditioning can lead to attracting toxic partners who superficially fit societal ideals but lack the qualities that truly matter to you.

4. People Pleasing

Attracting toxic partners could also result from being a people pleaser. If you’re constantly bending over backward to make others happy, you’ll struggle to say no, making you susceptible to toxic individuals. People pleasers find it difficult to establish and uphold boundaries, allowing others to take advantage of them.

These individuals often struggle to set boundaries, even if it means compromising their own well-being. You might know you’re in a toxic relationship but remain in it to avoid upsetting your family or the person you’re dating.

People pleasers might find it challenging to refuse anything that comes their way, prioritizing others over themselves. Toxic individuals exploit people pleasers’ tendency to agree and their difficulty with confrontation. Some traits of a people pleaser include:

Reluctance to say no, even when they want to

Pretending to agree with everyone

Avoidance of conflict or confrontation

Fear of being disliked by others

Silence when hurt

Extreme compromise to keep others happy

Putting themselves last

People pleasers are prime targets for narcissists, who appreciate their willingness to say “yes” and their readiness to fulfill their needs.

5. Low Self-Esteem

Low self-esteem renders you susceptible to attracting toxic people into your life. Toxic individuals can sense your lack of self-confidence, making you an easy target for manipulation. Low self-esteem implies insecurity and a need for validation from anyone who provides it.

This vulnerability makes you easily susceptible to flattery and deception, creating a false sense of worthiness. Once in the relationship, the toxic partner reveals their true self, leaving you weakened and unable to assert your opinions or stand your ground. Your self-worth becomes tied to this toxic person, leaving you trapped.


Falling prey to a toxic person is not a reflection of intelligence, and you should never feel foolish for being in an abusive situation. Anyone can be vulnerable to toxic relationships, but factors such as people-pleasing tendencies, unaddressed childhood wounds, low self-esteem, and a lack of boundaries make some individuals more susceptible. The key is to consistently work on yourself to the point where your vulnerabilities cannot be exploited for others’ selfish needs. Recognizing signs that might draw you to narcissistic people is just one step in preventing future toxic relationships. Always remember that you deserve a better life, and your well-being comes first.

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Edwin Bii
Edwin Bii

I'm Edwin Bii, a trained advanced conversational hypnotherapist (ACH) and Mind Shifting Coach from Kenya offering mental health support, and life coaching to help you crush your goalsand overcome your problems. Together, we'll navigate challenges, build self-awareness, and create a happier, healthier you. Let's unlock your potential.

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