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Dismissive Avoidant Attachment

Signs of Dismissive Avoidance

-Prides themself on independence, may be very accomplished at work but neglects relationships in favour of success  

-Loses interest after 'the chase'

- Keeps others at 'arms length' - intimacy feels uncomfortable/ overwhelming 

-Dislikes opening up /talking about emotions. slow to let others in 

-take dating slowly - takes me a long time to want to be exclusive / commit 

look for a relationship thst is easygoing, doiesnt ask too much of me - i am turned off by partners being pushy, overdramatic , emotional 

i sometimes feel guilty that i dont know how to be there for my partner when upset - i am aware i am less emotionally available than tohers

underneath my tough exterior I secrely feel defenctive and ashamed - i try to push thesee feelings away but sometimes they catch up to me 

i proces my feelings in private -  its rare to see me cry or for me to share wharts really going on inside  

prefer to keep thigns casual 

I trust logic not emotions 

-May feel disconnected from own emotions, not sure how they feel or too afraid to look at their emotional world 

 - Appears as cold/distant/aloof to others

-Don't trust others easily - worldview: 'people let me down/hurt me'

-Tendency to feel trapped in a relationship, values maintaining freedom

-Not sure if relationships are 'worth it' 

- Hypervigilant of being 'controlled' and 'criticised'

- Quickly see a partner's flaws and the negative aspects of the relationship but

after a breakup positive feelings about the relationship return and regret sets in

-Copes with feeling emotionally unsafe by withdrawing rather than expressing their fears and needs 

-Chooses friends who are also avoidants which validates their worldview and keeps them safe from being 'seen too deeply'

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Path To Growth

Dismissive avoidant attachment is built upon having a (sometimes overly) positive perception of self on the surface ( sounds good right? But we can lean into defensiveness, arrogance and a lack of empathy that hurts those we love... and this is really a protective mechanism hiding the deeply vulnerable parts of yourself that you can't run from forever) and a negative (distrusting) perception of others. Thus to heal your attachment wound, there are two aspects to work upon:

  • Learning to love yourself - In a genuine way. Not wearing a mask, closing off from others, controlling others' emotional expression, trying to assert dominance in our close relationships… but actually starting to get to know the emotional part of ourselves and to respect it, and to validate that there was nothing wrong with us. We built up our defenses against others hurting us because our caregivers/ important early figures were emotionally unavailable and didn't know how to love us, but real, safe love is available and despite what others might have taught us, it's okay to feel afraid, to feel uncomfortable emotions such as sadness… We can learn to embrace the parts of ourselves that others might have shamed us for and stop needing to expend so much energy 'defending ourselves' against people that might hurt the vulnerable little child inside of us. When we learn to appreciate and love these aspects of ourselves life and relationships become a lot easier.

  • Learning to see others more positively and to appreciate the value of relationships

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