What makes commitmentphobia so hard to recognize and even comprehend at first is that most people, both men and women, who say they’re looking for commitment or marriage are actually doing just that. Most of them want to be in a loving relationship with all of their heart, and many even want to get married and create a family.
Most people don’t experience any commitment issues until something triggers them. What causes lovers to get hurt is that the better the relationship, the more anxiety a commitmentphobe feels. This is the result of their conscious desire battling with their subconscious fear. Since they consciously know they want a good relationship, they usually assume their partner is wrong for them when they find they are just not happy in the relationship. In reality, their unhappiness is brought about because their partner is such a good choice for them that it triggers their commitmentphobia.
As they start to recognize a true commitment might actually come to fruition, they become increasingly anxious and they withdraw. Sometimes by just getting space and creating distance in the relationship, but many times they suddenly bail out completely. Then the abandoned partner is devastated and usually has a very difficult time letting go.
Signs of Commitment Issues:
- Moving too fast: Subconsciously he knows it won’t last, so he will pull you into the relationship with no fear. He’s living in today and has no thought of tomorrow, so he’s comfortable to love you with reckless abandon.
- Talking openly about commitment: She’ll refer to you as “we” or “us.” She’ll openly make plans for your life together. But as soon as she feels confident you want a commitment too, her anxiety will kick in. Your relationship will never be the same.
- Too understanding: He voices his dislike for men who selfishly mistreat and abandon women. He seems to truly understand what you need from him. Be careful; he may know about bad behavior firsthand—he who protests too much. He’s trying to feel better about himself by acknowledging he’s not as bad as other men. While he’s telling you he is a good guy, he is also reassuring himself.
- Showing vulnerability and neediness: A true commitmentphobe spends a lot of time putting her wall up, creating distance, and running away from love. But in the beginning of a relationship, she feels safe from commitment, so her true feelings and emotions can flow freely. Be careful; as soon as she starts to feel comforted, her anxiety will kick in and her wall will go back up. She’ll start running again.
- Finding faults: He may start to find fault with you. If you have ever shown your Achilles’ heel—you feel a little overweight, you don’t make enough money—you gave him the information he can discredit you with. Things he may have previously supported you on, he may now turn against you. Even if you didn’t show him any faults, he will find something—even trivial things. To him, your faults are very real. No matter how perfect you try to be, he will always find another fault so he can avoid the commitment.
- Trying to escape the relationship: Going out with friends, taking trips without you, engaging in activities that don’t include you, she may even cheat. As she struggles with her anxiety, she’ll be confused and probably want to keep you around—just not as close as you used to be. She’s feeling claustrophobic now and needs a lot of space. If you don’t allow her to get space, she will end up leaving you.
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