The inability to anticipate negative consequences can lead to serious problems.

A female client, “Jackie”, was in a toxic relationship with a mentally unbalanced man, “Jake”, whom  she idolized when she was a teen.

While Jackie and Jake were still together, despite their rocky relationship, they planned a two-day driving trip. It was during that trip that Jackie intended to tell Jake that she wanted to break up. (Any opinion about her plan?)  She did not foresee the risk of spending two days in a car with him , having told him that she wanted to end the relationship. Are you scratching your head yet? You might not be surprised that she had been in other bad, even dangerous, relationships prior to that one. Her road-trip  decision was just one of many careless choices that marked her relationships.

A second actual case: A male client who fathered seven children by four women – never married –  apparently was not able to foresee that one day he might owe enormous amounts of child support. The mother of his last four children, living together but not married to him, knew about his other kids, but decided to mate with him, anyway. What did she not foresee?

To be fair, some situations might never bee foreseen. In addition certain people are experts at masking their unsavory characters and ulterior motives. Apart from those circumstances, therapists observe a steady stream of clients who have big problems partly because they fail to spot warning signs. 

Why is it that some people can’t see trouble on the horizon?  What is it that blinds them? Impatience? Desperation? Loneliness? Low self—worth? The desire to live in a fantasy? Regardless of the explanation, it seems clear that the person who finds himself in trouble is not using the adult, reasoning part of his brain. 

The good news is that people who have been led by some other part of their brain – or part o their body – can change that. While some problems do not always require outside help, I believe this one does. The reason is that such poor decision-making is often rooted in deeper issues which usually demand professional treatment. If this article speaks to you, and if you are ready to get help, please do not hesitate to reach out.. The phone number is (219) 309-3928.  It would be an honor to be of service.

For additional thoughts click Warning Signs

Thanks for reading!