People get attached to other people, habits, gadgets, and a variety of things daily. Typically, there is nothing wrong with this attachment so far as it remains healthy. However, it could be significantly detrimental to their short-term and long-term health once it leads to anxiety. Here’s what you need to know about attachment anxiety.
What does Attachment anxiety mean?
Attachment anxiety is the detachment you feel when one has issues in their relationships with their parents, spouses, or kids. In most cases, it can be linked to the person having a difficult childhood. While there hasn’t been a detailed survey to understand the full extent, it is believed that painful childhood experiences and related bad parenting habits are the main culprits.
Parents and guardians have to ensure stable attachments when their child or ward is in their early years as this is very important for their overall development. These attachments will serve as a baseline for almost all the relationships they’ll have in the future. Messing it up now can have far-reaching effects that can advance into adulthood.
In this article, we’ll talk about the causes, symptoms, treatments, and coping mechanisms if your significant order has this disorder.
Anxiety in itself, as we know, can stem from the genetic makeup of the individual. Even as early as five years of age, children can present disinhibiting behaviors, which will naturally graduate to separation anxiety.
Attachment anxiety can also be caused by other factors such as abusive, overprotective, unloving parents. It is usual for a child to feel some pressure and later look for consolation from their parents. If the child doesn’t have their anxiousness squashed, then a sense of insecurity and distrust is formed, which means emotions such as grief, fear, low self-esteem are born.
It might eventually be seen all through that individual’s life, and it could even lead him to some bad runs with the law in the future.
It is relatively easy to access someone with Attachment Anxiety disorders.
Below, we’ll list the signs of the disorders in both children and adults.
- Regular bouts of anxiousness
- Fear of strange faces
- Inconsolable crying
- Grief when separated from their parents
- Weak relationship with their peers
- Difficulty keeping their emotions in check
- Fear of being underappreciated and undervalued
- Consistent need for support from those around them
- Attributes and behaviors that could chase their partners away
- Fear of abandonment and rejection
- Fear of losing their partner
Attachment Anxiety is not regarded as a diagnosis but generally treated on its own as a separate symptom. About 50% of the world population has stable attachment styles, but those in the remaining percentage fall under different unstable types.
Separation anxiety, on the other hand, can be diagnosed as early as the age of 6. Children with this disorder are usually challenging to be around. They sometimes refuse to go to school; they don’t respect or listen to their parents, teachers, or peers.
Most children eventually outgrow this disorder, however.
This disorder has responded to different types of therapy:
1. Interpersonal therapy(IPT)
This form of treatment trains individuals to better their day-to-day social interactions with the rest of the world. For this to be achieved, the person has to work with a therapist. To be in the best position to diagnose and select the best personalized treatment for the individual.
2. Cognitive behavioral therapy(CBT)
This form of therapy is directed towards assisting individuals in changing their negative thought patterns, which are a major contributing factor to feelings of anxiousness in relationships. If a person can learn a new direction of thinking, it’s possible to rewire them into less anxious and more secure individuals.
Forms of Medication
Suppose an individual is suffering from both Attachment Anxiety and a diagnosed mental disorder. In that case, you can take drugs both orally and intravenously to help assist, such as Selective Serotonin Reuptake Inhibitors(SSRIs).
A recent study showed that interpersonal therapy has dramatically reduced this disorder and even decreased levels of depression in them.
The primary reason Attachment Anxiety has been a problem for so long is that people use the wrong coping mechanisms to deal with it. If one doesn’t seek the right help, they might make things worse than they already are. A prevalent example is constantly checking up on your partner. Naturally, you might think this would be a good thing. Still, in hindsight, it will only increase their anxiety and, as such, commonly culminates in the relationship being damaged.
When you identify the best coping mechanisms to use, it will help achieve a stable relationship in record time.
If, as an individual, you notice indicators of attachment anxiety, then there are some steps you can take to live your best life still. Some of these steps include:
- Making a conscious effort to look ahead and make new decisions irrespective of how you might have been treated as a child.
- Selecting a partner that has stable attachment styles and makes sure to understand if your partner’s attributes might be the cause of your attachment anxiety
- Securing a well-experienced specialist or therapist, though their usefulness is usually undervalued, is a crucial component in helping you overcome the disorder.
- Recognition and avoidance of the people that cause or aggravate the issue.
Mechanisms their partners can employ
When one finds themselves in a relationship with someone with this disorder, there’s no need for any immediate worry; this is because there are ways you can help.
- Not limiting their emotions and serving as a pillar of support
- Carefully letting your partner know how much their issue is affecting your relationship
- Don’t lie or break your promises to them
- Encouraging them to seek professional help
- Going to couple therapy as regularly as possible
Attachment anxiety is not a great companion for a relationship, as it hardly ever lets one enjoy relationships. There is a reason why it has gotten a lot of press in the internet age, and hopefully, this will help couples and individuals weather the storm.
That is why we penned this piece, and hopefully, after following all the steps listed above, it will get you closer to achieving a balance in your life. But remember, if the symptoms persist, then you should book an appointment with a registered mental health professional.