We almost all have hesitations when it comes to entering a relationship with others: whether it is in the sense that only compromises are made and therefore less room to do what you want or that you experience a constant feeling fear because you are afraid someone does not want to be with you. These feelings are complicated and often lead to confusion and often to minimal (emotional) intimacy. Hannah Cuppen’s book ‘Liefdesbang’ (Love Scared) explains that all this has to do with fear of abandonment and fear of commitment. But what can you do to deal with these fears? We are happy to give you some insights!
Cuppen uses ‘Love Scared’ as a collective name for fear of attachment and fear of abandonment. According to Hannah, almost everyone struggles with freedom and connection. Of course, this manifests itself in all sorts of ways. With fear of commitment you are afraid to bind yourself to someone. You (probably) unconsciously make sure that a relationship can not develop so that there is more than minimal (emotional) intimacy.
On the other hand, there are people with the fear of abandonment. They like to share and look for emotional contact. They want to connect with the other and often think that they need the other person.They cling to their partner, where someone with a fear of commitment needs space, freedom and making as few choices as possible (not being ‘stuck’ on appointments).
What to do?
You may recognize and acknowledge that you are having some symptoms of being ‘Love Scared’, but what now? Try to get closer to yourself. First try to connect with your own feelings, your own traumas and try to process them. This might be painful, you force yourself to get started with things that you would rather not face. But the better the connection with yourself and your emotions, the better you are able to make a connection with someone else. This is a process, but it surely can be learned!
For more insights we would like to refer you to the book ‘Liefdesbang’, unfortunately this book is in Dutch.
If you would like to get help in sorting things out you are more than welcome to connect with a coach at NiceDay!