Relationships are an important part of everyone’s life. But what do we do when fear of abandonment causes us to devalue our relationships and avoid intimacy with others?
Fear of abandonment is a feeling that comes from despair at our inability to control the future and influence the actions of our partner that we feel are vital to us. In such a situation, we begin to look for ways to protect ourselves from this fear, and one of those ways is devaluation.
The devalued person is no longer a danger to us, is no longer important to us, and it is easier to end the relationship with him or her. As a result, we gain the illusion of control over the situation. But at what price does this illusion of control come? The absence of a satisfying relationship, the constant experience of loneliness.
Why does this happen? Because a person directs his efforts not toward improving the quality of the relationship, but toward avoiding the relationship altogether. He chooses to remain alone, in his comfort zone, in a protective shell from life, rather than learn to cope with his fears and emotions.
For all that, this behavior is selfish, as it seeks only to take from others from a position of “they must meet my expectations,” “they are responsible for my well-being”…
It is difficult to create good relationships on this shaky ground. Relationships, including those of love, are formed when the other is not trying to gain something for himself, but is capable of sharing something (not in return, but from his heart).
There can be no relationship in which we are only used. If our needs in a relationship are not met, then what’s the point? Clients often come to me dissatisfied with their relationships, devaluing relationships, and behind all this I see the fear of becoming vulnerable, the anxious expectation of being abandoned.
This fear comes from childhood, when relationships with parents were extremely unstable and even dangerous, devaluing. It’s understandable that if you beat a dog all the time, it will shy away from even a wave of the hand that’s about to pet it.
A traumatized person needs to develop alternative thinking skills, to step out of the tunnel of his habitual beliefs, to learn to relate his perceptions to the facts of reality. To what extent the person has overcome this in himself or herself can tell the quality of his or her life and relationships, the degree of satisfaction.
The degree of satisfaction is a rather subjective thing, because we can have a lot of positive things, but not see it behind the depreciation. So it is important to learn to see the positives in a relationship and learn to build on trust, openness and understanding.