Both men and women can show the signs of a commitment phobia. A commitment phobia relates to a pattern of behaviour which is triggered by entering into a new relationship. When a new partner gets “too close,” the signs of the commitment phobia interfere with the relationship progressing. Signs of commitment phobia can include: feeling anxious about the relationship without knowing why, starting arguments regularly, being overly critical or being afraid you are going to lose your freedom. All these commitment issues place barriers to enjoying a committed relationship with a partner.
If you have a fear of intimacy, no relationship can ever measure up to your ideals. Either your ideals are grounded in the belief that all relationships are doomed, or you have a fantasy relationship ideal which can never be realised. Either way, disappointment is inevitable. There is always going to be the feeling that something is wrong with a relationship, even when this is not the case. It’s relatively common for the signs of a commitment phobia to show through a history of many unsuccessful relationships or multiple, casual sexual partners.
Individuals will typically show the signs of a commitment phobia by shutting off emotionally. This gives the person with the phobia control over the situation in a bid to overcome feelings of anxiety. Assigning blame to the other person helps the person showing the signs of the commitment phobia avoid the feelings of guilt associated with ending the relationship.
A commitment phobia causes someone to engage in destructive behaviours when they are in a romantic relationship. These actions are motivated by fear. However, having a commitment phobia means that you are not aware of why you behave destructively. Rather, your subconscious controls your behaviour. The signs of a commitment phobia can show in the following ways:
Having unrealistic expectations
Being easily bored with new relationships
Reluctance opening up emotionally
Fear of reproach for being yourself
When you have recently started a romantic relationship with someone who starts showing the signs of commitment phobia this behaviour is at best confusing and at worst heartbreaking. Individuals who show the signs of a commitment phobia are therefore likely to experience many failed relationship attempts. Issues such as loneliness are likely to be experienced, when the dating game or the single life is no longer fulfilling.
We all learn to relate to others while we are children. Negative experiences within the family home such as parents who fight and argue a lot and poor family relationships can cause someone to show the signs of commitment phobia later in life. A traumatic divorce or experiencing domestic violence or abuse causes many people to develop commitment issues. If you are concerned your life is being affected by the signs of a commitment phobia, arrange to see a therapist to help you to overcome your relationship issues.
Most of us find being in a relationship relatively easy. Sure there will be a few bumps in the road, but we try and smooth over them as we go along...
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