A positive self-image is vital to success in every area of life. In dating, low self esteem will alter the course of the relationship as much as any other personality trait. Low self esteem will keep you from beginning a relationship, adding value to one that is in progress, or removing yourself from a harmful relationship.
Low self esteem will keep you from forming a relationship.
With a low self-image, you will believe that you are not worthy of a relationship or, at least, not one with the person who has your interest at the time. In most cases, you will never initiate a new relationship with low self esteem. Your friends and coworkers will always be working on your behalf to get you a date.
Most of the time, these dates will not be to your advantage because the other party will either feel like they have the inside to track in the relationship or view it as a mercy date. Neither of these scenarios is likely to produce a positive long-lasting outcome. Approaching only people that you believe are desperate enough to accept your invitation to go out is not a great plan, either. You will find yourself settling for someone who is available or willing instead of the type of person that you really want for an enduring relationship.
The flip side of this picture comes when you are unwilling to accept a date from someone that you consider too far above your status. Feeling unworthy of their attention, low self esteem will cause you to decline an opportunity that could lead to a great relationship. Along the same lines, you might be wiling to accept a date from someone who is a bad choice for a mate because you just want someone to want you.
With low self esteem, your ability to add value to a current relationship is minimized.
Every relationship is dependent upon the input of both parties to maintain it. To be healthy, each partner must be able to give something meaningful and receive something beneficial from the relationship. Low self esteem will cause a person to believe they have nothing worthwhile to contribute and deserve nothing good from a relationship.
Very few people with a positive view of themselves will want to stay in a relationship where there is little satisfaction derived from giving to their partner and nothing being given back in return. In these situations the healthier partner will just decide to move on to a better opportunity. Low self esteem will cause you to believe that it is what you deserve and not fight to maintain the relationship.
It is much more difficult to leave a bad relationship when your self esteem is too low.
No one deserves to be treated poorly as a routine. Those who choose to stay in a relationship where they are abused, humiliated, or treated negatively are struggling with low self esteem. This poor self-image will cause a person to believe that they are receiving what they deserve when a relationship turns negative in their direction.
Instead of leaving a toxic situation, they will stay because they view themselves as having no other viable options. They not only see themselves as worth very little, but believe that everyone around them views them that way, too.
In each of these situations, it is important that a person finds a way to get help to change their self-image and raise their low self esteem. It might require taking some additional classes to up the education level. Counselling might be a good alternative to consider. Finding new friendships that can build up your opinion of yourself can help. Getting involved in clubs, a church, and other groups will make substantial chances to gain more self esteem.