There are justified fears and there are fears that seem to come from nowhere. For example, relationship-based fears are very confusing. Here are two types of fears that might keep you from having a close, loving relationship.
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Fear of abandonment
Some people fear that being in a close relationship will make them so vulnerable that they will lose themselves. But most of all, people fear that once they will grant the other access to their heart and most private thoughts and feelings, they will be abandoned. They are afraid that once the other will get to know them deeply, they will be rejected. Actually, these people cannot accept the risk that any relationship involves: the possibility of being left. Therefore, the desire to be intimately involved is overshadowed by the prospect of having their heart broken.
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Fear of being smothered
At the other end of the spectrum, there are the people for whom any relationship is a threat to their independence. These people cannot imagine a relationship in which they keep their freedom, autonomy and personal space intact. They feel overwhelmed by the prospect of depending on another person, of having to justify their decisions to someone else. As with the fear of abandonment, they don’t trust the other enough to let themselves known and loved.
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The most common cause for both kinds of fears is a childhood wound. In the case of fear of abandonment, the person probably had a distant parent, who neglected their emotional needs. In the case of fear of being smothered, the person probably had a parent who didn’t respect their need for boundaries and was overbearing.
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Of course, there’s a lot of work involved in dissolving these fears and unshackling yourself from their effect. But the possible outcome – a close and loving relationship – makes it worth it.
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