Do You Constantly Worry That Your Partner Will Leave You? Part 1

Do You Constantly Worry That Your Partner Will Leave You? Part 1

by Dr Katherine Mollart - 20th November, 2015

Do you constantly worry that your partner will leave you? Part 1

  • Do you become clingy and desperate when your partner pulls away from you?
  • Do you overact to minor things they say or do, and interpret them as signs that they don’t want to be with you?
  • Can you be excessively jealous and possessive?
  • Do you get angry and accuse your partner of not being loyal or faithful?
  • Do you struggle to be away from your partner, even for a few days?
  • Do you sometimes detach, leave or withdraw to punish them for leaving you alone?
  • Are you never fully convinced that your partner will stay with you?
  • Do you get so obsessed with the idea that they will leave you, that you end up driving them away?
  • Do you keep falling in love with people who won’t commit to you? For instance, they are married or involved in another relationship; they are not consistently available for you to spent time together (e.g. they travel or work a lot); they are emotionally unstable (e.g. they drink, use drugs, are depressed) and can’t be there for you emotionally; they insist on having the freedom to come and go, don’t want to settle down, or want the freedom to have many lovers); they are ambivalent about you, one moment acting deeply in love with you and the next moment acting as if you don’t exist.
  • Have you started to avoid relationships altogether because you are afraid of losing the person or getting too close and being hurt?
  • Do you worry about ending up alone?

If you have answered ‘yes’ to most of these questions, you probably have difficulties with abandonment.

Where do these abandonment fears come from? Here are a few ideas:

  • A parent died or left home when you were young
  • A parent was hospitalised or separated from you for a prolonged period of time when you were a child
  • You were raised by nannies or in a care home or you were sent to boarding school at a young age.
  • A parent was unstable, became depressed, angry, drank or in some other way withdrew from you on a regular basis.
  • Your parents divorced when you were young or fought so much that you worried your family would fall apart.
  • You lost the attention of a parent in a significant way e.g. your brother or sister was born, a sibling was ill for a prolonged time or your parent remarried.
  • Your family was excessively close and you were overprotected. You never learnt the tools to deal with life’s challenges as a child because they did it for you.

In part 2, we will look at how to overcome these abandonment fears. Click below to navigate.

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