While no relationship is exactly the same, too often the way we attach ourselves to our partners says everything we need to know about why the relationship failed. Before you start blaming yourself, this attachment has a lot to do with your upbringing.
Attachment theory might be able to explain why people really struggle in relationships. Let’s figure out what it means, and what your style would be.
It’s All In Attachement Theory
A lot of our beliefs as adults are shaped while we are still children. We learn the most in the earliest stages of life from our parents. This is especially significant in romantic relationships.
We tend to project unto our romantic relationships the parental relationships we once formed, like an extension of those bonds. The way our parents interacted with us and showed love is often recreated by us as adults. However, for some, this could be detrimental. It all depends on which type of these four attachment styles you have.
If you are someone who attaches securely, then you are one of the lucky ones. One or both of your parents were very affectionate and in tune with your needs as a child. You recall mostly positive memories of your childhood and continue to have a good relationship with your parents. You tend to be trusting and reasonable.
On the other hand, you might be complacent in relationships because they’re “good enough.” You easily get comfortable even if the relationship is not completely up to your standard.
As the name suggests, those with avoidant attachment tend to avoid expressing their feelings. This is due to having one or both parents be emotionally unavailable or insensitive during their childhood. These kids were often shut down and made to perceive emotion as weakness.
As adults they tend to be too accepting of their partners’ flaws, to make up for the lack of acceptance they once felt. However, they tend to judge themselves the harshest and feel as though love needs to be “earned.” They often feel like they may get rejected if they show how they really feel.
If you’ve developed an anxious attachment, it’s because your parents were inconsistent. There were times they made you feel loved and accepted and other times they were unavailable, overbearing, and insensitive. This child was always craving the nurturing side but anxious that one wrong move could flip the switch.
They tend to fear the unknown and have a hard time trusting. They never truly feel safe and end up acting out. They tend to be overly jealous, and overbearing in relationships as they overanalyze and make assumptions in an attempt to mind read their partners.
This attachment theory was developed by children that were living in fight or flight mode. They formed disorganized attachments out of fear because their parents create unsafe homes and frightening relationships. These children wanted to escape from the same people that were supposed to care for them.
They have a skewed view of their main attachment figures and as adults continue to live in survival mode. They easily feel threatened. They can be quite dismissive of emotion. They feel easily threatened and often except the worst., They require constant validation.
You Are Not Stuck
Keep in mind that you’re not stuck with the consequences of your attachment style simply because of your parents’ wins or mistakes. However, being aware of your attachment style is the first step in understanding your needs. Just like love languages, you are able to take control of your attachment style.
The right person will learn how to respond to your needs and love you the way that you are. Continue to work on getting past the childhood moments that seem to hold you back.
Higher Perspectives Author is one of the authors writing for Higher Perspectives