Do we know why relationships become masochistic? In 2010 Helen Durkin of postgraduate institute for psycho therapy at New York thinks there are two reasons for this. A child’s conflict with the mother during weaning, nursing, weaning off, holding back and toilet training, the attachments, love and abrupt disruptions in attachments and holding back of love can be among the reasons.
The second reason is when a child growing up faces the love and romance of the parents. At this point in time the attention and love is taken from the child and the need for the opposite sex being transferred to the same or the opposite sex love and sex at home is faced by the reality that mom belongs to dad and dad belongs to mom. A libidinal issue is being setup at home. The child grows integrating the giving and withdrawing of food and love during weaning, the oral period of development. Many grow out and develop normally and many put up an opposition to the above. One form of opposition or defense against the withholding of love by parents is masochism.
The pattern of responsiveness and none-responsiveness to the love needs of the other in the relationship can be manifesting the above conflict. In normal adult adjustment there is reciprocity of giving back and receiving back the love. To remain in the relationship long enough, to remain engaged for a length of time, withholding longer, holding on to the anticipation of giving and receiving the warmth and love. The normal development carries satisfaction within oneself that the significant other is accepted and approved. That the self is approved by the self and the self is independent taking responsibility for own actions, and yet accepting that the other can have dependency needs, needing love and to be able to adjust, cope, be competent and have mastery over new circumstances.
Like an infant who is in need for love, acceptance and protection of parents, learning to expect love, the adult who has not achieved independence seeks for the “source” that would satisfy all his or her needs. Joanne says, “if only he would..”, Jashua says, “if she could only..” what? The saying “only if could or should or would” reflect the above infantile fantasy of love needs being met by “only” one source. When she says, “he is not there for me..”, and he says “my mom did more than she did..” also reflect the constant need and expectation for warmth and love. About that if one does not remain patient, holding on, may result in the infantile dependant need acting out, throwing relationship tantrums leading to break ups, making up and divorces. At least be patient initially when the love pang arises. In 2005 Matthew D. Johnson and Thomas N. Bradbury of UCLA, by the foothills of Bel Air, Brentwood and Westwood, CA showed that newlywed marital satisfaction is high when relationship interactions start out melodically and then take the discord pattern than when in reverse.