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  • Writer's pictureroseprojectindy

Wait, What?! I'm too "Clingy", or Catch Me If You Can...

How did my childhood experiences hurt my current relationship?? What? Understanding Attachment.

Attachment styles are patterns of how we think, feel, and behave in close relationships. They are rooted in our earliest experiences with caregivers and influence our expectations and interactions in adult relationships. Understanding and addressing attachment styles in therapy can lead to healthier relationships and improved mental health. Here are the primary attachment styles that are often addressed in therapy, including definitions and examples:

  1. Secure Attachment:

  • Definition: Individuals with a secure attachment style are comfortable with intimacy and autonomy. They tend to have positive views of themselves and their partners, can communicate their needs effectively, and are more likely to seek support and offer it to their partners.

  • Example: A person with a secure attachment style feels comfortable expressing affection towards their partner and is also comfortable with their partner expressing affection towards them. They do not worry excessively about the relationship or fear being too close or too distant.

  1. Anxious-Preoccupied Attachment (also known as Anxious or Ambivalent Attachment):

  • Definition: Individuals with an anxious-preoccupied attachment style seek high levels of intimacy, approval, and responsiveness from partners, often feeling insecure about being alone. They can become overly dependent on their relationships and may require constant reassurance and attention from their partners.

  • Example: A person with an anxious-preoccupied attachment style may constantly text or call their partner to check in, feel jealous or insecure when their partner is not around, and often worry about their partner leaving them.

  1. Dismissive-Avoidant Attachment (also known as Avoidant Attachment):

  • Definition: Individuals with a dismissive-avoidant attachment style often desire a high level of independence, sometimes at the expense of intimate relationships. They may feel that they don’t need close relationships and prefer to keep others at arm's length.

  • Example: A person with a dismissive-avoidant attachment style may avoid getting too close to others, refuse to share their feelings or show vulnerability, and prioritize their independence and self-sufficiency over forming close relationships.

  1. Fearful-Avoidant Attachment (also known as Disorganized Attachment):

  • Definition: Individuals with a fearful-avoidant attachment style have mixed feelings about close relationships, desiring closeness but fearing being hurt. They often find themselves in a tug-of-war between needing intimacy and wanting to avoid it, leading to unpredictable and confusing behaviors.

  • Example: A person with a fearful-avoidant attachment style may want to develop deep connections with others but pull away when a relationship becomes too intimate. They might have a hard time trusting others and show a mix of avoidant and anxious behaviors.

In therapy, individuals can explore their attachment styles, understand how they impact their relationships, and work towards developing a more secure attachment. Therapeutic approaches may include exploring past relationships and patterns, improving communication skills, and building self-awareness and self-compassion. Therapy can provide a safe space to heal from past hurts and develop healthier ways of relating to oneself and others.

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