Emily,who possessed an anxious attachment style, met an aspiring actor named David. She fell for him very quickly, but throughout the relationship, he gave her mixed reviews about wanting to be together. The lack of reassurance unnerved Emily and she began to obsess about him. She would constantly check on him and would spend hours tracking his whereabouts online and creating fake personas in order to chat with him.
Once she realized that he was actually the bad dude that she was trying to investigate, it took her a long time to leave the situation.
Why you may ask? Because of her attachment style.
Someone that has the anxious attachment style tends to be hypersensitive to anything that might threaten any intimate relationship. When that occurs, you will tend to activate strategies that will get, or remain close to your partner.
Some of those strategies are:
- Thinking about your mate any and all times of the day.
- Putting them on a pedestal:underestimating your talents
- Believing this is your only chance at love (i.e. I will never find another person like him/her or I will end up alone.
- Even though you’re unhappy now, they will eventually turn it around, so I better hang in there.
- He/She can change.
These thought processes can cause you to live your life in the danger zone in terms of relationships. Constantly living in this zone can cause you to behave in such away that can be toxic not only to you, but also your partner.
You will try and get their attention by acting in ways like:
- Staying in constant contact by e-mail, text, or simply running into them at odd places and times (i.e. stalking)
- Keeping score
- Acting hostile
- Threatening to leave
- Trying to make him/her feel jealous
If you are dating someone that possesses these characteristics and you are very interested in them, don’t mess with their heads early in the relationship. Reassurance is the key. You must be attuned to their needs in the early stages of dating otherwise you will expend more energy trying to maintain a sense of normalcy.
Has anyone dated someone that had an anxious attachment style? What things did you do to reassure that you were committed to the relationship?
In our next blog on Attachment style, we will explore why the anxious is attracted to the avoider!