A fear of commitment prevents many from holding on to intimate relationships. Most of the time, people with commitment issues don’t realize they even have this fear or they ignore the signs that they can’t commit.
While people with a fear of commitment say they want to be in a healthy relationship, they consistently do things that keep them from achieving this.
Are you ready to love? Do you want a healthy relationship that lasts?
Before you do, you must first examine your past relationships.
Here, some deep questions to ask yourself that will help determine if you’re relationship avoidant — which means that you likely have a fear of engulfment or commitment phobia.
1. Do you consistently choose unavailable or inappropriate people?
2. Do you find yourself being overly critical of the other person once it seems like the relationship could become more serious?
3. Do you find yourself being very picky over small things?
4. Do you find yourself feeling interested when the other person pulls back, but then pulling back if the other person shows renewed interest?
5. Do you often pine for an old relationship, building it up to be better than your current relationship, or better than it actually was?
6. Do you come on strong at the beginning of the relationship, believing that you have found ‘the one’, and when the other person reciprocates, you pull back equally strongly, suddenly losing interest?
7. Do you often find yourself not having time for the relationship?
8. Do you feel pulled on when the other person wants your time and attention so you go into resistance?
9. Do you often blame your partner for doing the very things that you are doing?
10. Once you break up, do you reach out to the other person just to make sure they are still there and somewhat available?
11. Do you generally feel like you have one foot out the door?
12. Do you consistently tell yourself that the problem is that you have just not found the ‘right one’?
13. Was one or both of your parents very controlling?
14. Do you often give yourself up to please the other person and then end up feeling trapped in the relationship?
15. Do you believe that being in a relationship means having to give up your freedom?
16. Do you tell yourself that being in a relationship means that you are responsible for the other person’s feelings and this causes you anxiety?
17. Do you fear losing yourself when you commit to a relationship?
If you identify with some of these, you might want to consider that, as much as you may think you want a relationship, you might be afraid of being in one.
Children who are raised by one or both controlling parents often grow up to become adults who have a fear of losing themselves in a relationship.
Many children needed to give themselves up and allow themselves to be controlled in order to not lose their parents’ approval and, as adults, they may continue to fear that this is what relationships are all about.
Yet, underneath all this resistance, there is likely a part of you who is very lonely and deeply wants a relationship.
It’s to learn and practice developing your loving, adult self — the powerful spiritually connected aspect of you who can learn to love another without losing yourself.
When you learn how to love yourself, then you will set loving boundaries against being engulfed, controlled, smothered or consumed by a partner.
As a loving adult, you would create the safety to freely love another, knowing deeply in each moment that you would rather lose the other person than lose yourself.
When you know this to be true for yourself, then you are free to fully love another person.
It has to start with learning how to love yourself since you cannot love another and share that love with another unless you are loving yourself enough to create an inner sense of safety.