Attachment styles are the holy grail of understanding relationships and having empathy and compassion for the person you love but when you focus too much on I am anxious and my ex is avoidant, it makes relationships between anxious-avoidant seem almost impossible.
Anxious-avoidant can work if you focus on “what can we be?” rather than “what are we?”
So before you leave or dismiss someone as love-avoidant or “unlovable”, ask yourself:
- Am I easy to love or difficult to love?
- Do I need more (validation, attention, closeness, intimacy etc.) than any one human being can give?
- Do I know how to ask for what I need or do I complain, nag, criticize, act needy and clingy, try to control the relationship and your partner, punish, end the relationship (or threaten to), cut off all contact when I should be trying to connect more, call others selfish, commitment phobe, narcissistic, “love-avoidant” because I didn’t get my needs met?
Sometimes… it’s not them, it’s really you.
This goes both ways. Dismissive-avoidants before you label or dismiss someone as “needy”, complaining, nagging, critical, controlling, punishing, crazy etc., ask yourself:
- Do I know what the person I love needs to feel loved, wanted, validated, valued, cared for etc.?
- Do I know how to meet those needs in away that they feel loved, wanted, validated, valued, cared for etc.?
- Am I even trying to know their needs or meet them?
- Do I always put myself, my needs and what I want above my relationship and the person I love?
- Do I engage is distancing behaviours because my partner is needy and clingy or is my partner needy and clingy because I distance and push them away?