Home · Love & Sex

Ask Dr. Sherry: Why Can’t I Stop Loving This Man?

A reader can't seem to get over the man who hurt her deeply. Read Dr. Sherry's advice to her.

You’ve seen celebrity clinical psychologist Dr. Sherry Blake, author of The Single Married Woman: True Stories of Why Women Feel All Alone in Their Marriages, keep the Braxton sisters calm on the hit show Braxton Family Values. Now it’s your turn to sit in her chair…

Q: I’m in love with a man who hurt me deeply once before. I recently got back in contact with him, but I haven’t told anyone about it. I think I’m ashamed of loving him again and I don’t want to hear everyone else’s negative comments about him. I also fear he will do the same thing he did once before which makes me want to keep him to myself. Not sure what I should do. Help!

A: It sounds like you are desperate to be loved. Are you in love with someone who does not love you? You say that he hurt you deeply once before, and it sounds as if you are embarrassed to let others know that you have reconnected with him. You seem to have a lot of unfinished business with him from your past. If you have not had an honest conversation with him, and have not resolved the issues related to him hurting you, what makes you think that this time it will be any different?

The fact that you got back in touch with him rather than him getting in touch with you says a lot. Mostly, it says that he has not had a change of heart because he didn’t seek you out to apologize. There is nothing wrong with loving another person, but you must love yourself first. I have to wonder what has happened that is attracting you to someone who has hurt you deeply. You are right in that others are likely to make negative comments about him when they learn you’re together again. In fact, you seem to expect him to hurt you once again. Often it is low self-esteem that allows women to set themselves up to be hurt repeatedly by others. If you do not feel good about yourself, do not expect others to necessarily feel good about you and treat you well. Hiding your involvement with him does not change the nature of your relationship. You asked, “What should I do?” I believe you already know what to do, but do you have the courage to do it? Walk away from this relationship and do not look back. You deserve much more than you are accepting! — Dr. Sherry   

Email us your questions for Dr. Sherry now and be sure to include “Ask Dr. Sherry” in the subject line.