How to Date With an Avoidant Attachment Style
Do you have an avoidant attachment style? Highly independent and feel suffocated by too much closeness? Watch this video!
If you have an avoidant attachment style or have ever dated someone who is emotionally unavailable, this video is for you. First, if you aren’t familiar with the term, let’s define ‘attachment style’. There are four attachment styles, which are the ways we ‘attach’ to our romantic partners. These forms of attachment began in early childhood. Most of us have one of the following three: Secure, anxious or avoidant.
Securely attached: You have relationships that are happy, long lasting, and are built on mutual trust. You feel comfortable expressing feelings and needs and can easily meet your partner’s needs.
Anxiously attached: You tend to feel insecure in relationships and need to be reassured frequently that you’re loved. This can feel clingy and needy to those with secure or avoidant attachment styles.
Avoidant attachment: You are independent and feel uncomfortable with extreme vulnerability and intimacy. Too much closeness can feel suffocating. You struggle with deep intimacy and trust, which leads to unconsciously creating reasons to leave or sabotage close relationships. You tend to connect to a partner, and then pull away when the relationship feels too intense. You struggle with expressing your feelings and needs.
Traits of an avoidant attachment style
• It’s not easy for you to name and express your feelings
• You’re fear losing your independence in a relationship
• You feel people often let you down
• You’re uncomfortable asking for help (and don’t trust people will come through)
• You feel relationships are a lot of work and you’re not sure it’s worth it
• You believe most people you date want to get close too quickly
• You need a lot of space in a relationship
How Do our Attachment Styles Form?
They are the result of our earliest relationships with our parents or caregivers and how they responded to our needs. An avoidant attachment style is formed when parents or caregivers were unavailable, preoccupied, or disinterested in you. If you grew up in this type of environment, your needs were not met, and your feelings were not validated. This led to burying your feelings and needs and relying on yourself.
When children feel like their parents have no desire or ability to know them, they believe they don’t matter unless they accomplish or prove themselves in some way. They have a hard time validating and expressing their feelings, hopes and dreams.
The reason people with an avoidant attachment style don’t look to others for comfort or support, is because their earliest experiences with parents or caretakers showed them that people are not trustworthy or soothing. That’s why they became self-reliant. It’s a wonderful survival skill, but in adulthood, it keeps them from true intimacy and connection.
They appear to be strong, independent, in control, and resilient. But the truth is, this fierce independence is a love guard. It pushes potential partners away. When men don’t think you need them for anything, why would they want to stay?
Although people with an avoidant attachment style are independent and most comfortable relying on themselves, most are kind, considerate, lovely people who want a relationship. They just don’t know how to achieve the intimacy they desire without the urge to run away or break up.
If You Have This Pattern, What Can You Do?
Here are some of the things you can do to have healthier relationships:
• Seek a partner with a secure attachment style.
• Practice identifying your feelings and needs and communicating them directly with everyone you’re close to.
• Notice when you’re distancing yourself, and try to stay in connection even when it feels uncomfortable.
• Practice asking for help and support from everyone.
• Consider working with a coach or therapist. (Click here to learn more about working with me to help you attract healthier relationships.)
• Be patient with yourself. This work takes a lot of practice, as you’re changing decades of brain patterns.
• Give yourself lots of love and compassion. You didn’t ask to be brought up this way. Your parents were probably doing the best they could. And when you know better, you do better.
Watch the video to learn more
What are you key takeaways from this video? Please comment below.