We all need to connect with others. It is human nature. But, not everyone knows how to attach securely and suffer fearful avoidant attachment.
The way we connect with the world around us is not innate. Although human beings have a basic need to attach to others, that does not mean everyone does so in the same manner. Our attachment style is how we approach relationships and the type of bonds we form with others. The fearful avoidant attachment style leads you down the road to heartache.
Developed early in childhood, an attachment style is a mixture between your past experience and your attachment to your parents. But, those who develop an insecure style often find it severely impacts the success of their adult relationships. [Read: The 19 signs you have emotional damage and how to move past it]
Your attachment style
Your attachment style is a set of patterns you implement to get your emotional needs met in a relationship. Sometimes they work the way that you want. But other times they get you the exact opposite of what you need.
The key to forming a stable relationship with others is a secure attachment style. The type of attachment pattern that you develop typically determines who you choose to be with and what you do to stay in a relationship, even if it is to your own detriment.
According to researchers in psychology, only about 60 percent of all adults have an attachment style considered “secure.” The other 40 percent fall into one of three categories. Twenty percent fall into a very anxious, and, sometimes, destructive pattern, called the fearful avoidant attachment style. [Read: 16 signs you’re not ready for a real relationship]
The fearful avoidant attachment style
The person with the fearful avoidant attachment style is a highly internally tumultuous being. They live in a constant state of ambivalence. However, the dichotomy that exists in the way they attach to other human beings is a continual source of anxiety and chaos. The person with a fearful avoidant attachment style is in a constant state of push and pull.
If they feel rejected, they pull in and cling harder out of fear of losing the person they are attached to. But, once they get in too close, they pull back out of fear of being hurt. The driving force behind the fearful avoidant attachment style is fear.
They are afraid to be in a relationship and be hurt, yet they are afraid to lose the relationship, because they might get hurt. That leaves the other partner constantly wondering what comes next and with a steady stream of mixed signals.
People with a fearful avoidant attachment style often keep their emotions on hold. Not wanting to show all their emotional cards, they fight hard to keep their reactions and feelings in check to no avail. When they finally give in and can’t hold their emotions in, they appear to explode to those around them. They tend to be unpredictable and come across as moody. [Read: How to be emotionally available so you can actually find love]
Why does the fearful attachment style cause such chaos in relationships?
Their assumption is you must cling hard and seek out the person you want to be attached to, to get their emotional needs met. But, once they get in too close, they pull back out of fear of getting hurt. At the root of their behavior lies the fear of rejection and vulnerability. So, they lose on both sides of their attempt to get their emotional cup filled.
The fearful avoidant attachment style individual struggles to find stability in a relationship. So, they tend to experience extreme lows and highs. Afraid of being abandoned by the people that they want most to be attached to, they struggle once they find what it was that they thought they wanted. It is the very intimacy they think they crave and forces them to retreat and pull back.
They tend to be off on their timing. When they should be pulling they are pushing, and when they should be pushing, they are pulling. And that predisposes them to abusive relationships and withstand more punishment than other attachment style types. [Read: 15 questions to reveal a controlling personality instantly]
We don’t have to be defined by our attachment style
Although every human has a basic need to attach and connect to others, not all people learn healthy ways of doing so. Mostly formed in childhood by the way a child attaches to their parents or caregivers, the good news is you can alter your attachment style to become more secure and find the peace in your relationship that you crave.
The first step involves figuring out what attachment style you have and work from there. If you have a history of failed relationships and search for the cause, consider how you bond to others in an attempt to get your emotional needs met. Anyone capable of forming a secure attachment style if they put the effort forth, figure out how what works to get your emotional cup filled and what empties it.
For the fearful avoidant attachment style, finding peace in a relationship is not easy. But, that does not mean that it isn’t possible. Figuring out what drives you is the best way to steer you in a healthier direction.
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