Consider Julie, a dismissing woman dating a securely attached man with an affectionate and somewhat needy six-year-old daughter. The relationship is going great. He is totally into her, fun, loving, and committed. Julie is enjoying the relationship until they start going on some outings with his child. Julie tells her friends, “I can’t stand that little girl. I really dislike her and just want her to get away from me. She always wants to hold my hand and I can’t stand it.” But when her friend asks why, she can come up with nothing but positive descriptors of the child. “She’s a really great little girl,” she says. “This is crazy! I don’t know what is wrong with me.” At the same time, Julie reports feeling nothing emotionally now when she sees her boyfriend and is starting to find fault with him. She wonders if she should just end the relationship.
STOP interpreting other people, based on who you are 🧐 The difference between an ambivelent and an avoidant attatched diary 🤔😂 (originally a woman's and a man's diary)
AMBIVALENT (her) diary: I think my husband is behaving strangely tonight. We have planned to meet at a restaurant for dinner. I was out shopping with my girlfriends all day, so I thought he was mad, because I was a little late, but he did not say anything about it. We did not really talk to each other. I suggested we go to a restaurant, that was a little quieter, so that we could talk better together. He accepted, but still did not say much. I asked him what was wrong. He just replied, "Nothing." I asked him if it was my fault, that he was angry. He said, that he was not angry, and that it had nothing to do with me, and that I should not worry. On the way home, I told him I loved him. He smiled and continued driving. I can not explain his behavior, and I do not understand why he did not say, "I love you too". When we got home, I felt like I had lost him, that he did not wanted anything to do with me anymore. He just sat and watched TV. He continued to be absent. In the end, I decided to go to bed, because we did not talk together after all. After about 15 minutes, he also went to bed, but I could still feel that he was absent and that his thoughts were in a completely different place. He fell asleep and I cried. I do not know what to do. I'm almost sure his thoughts are with someone else. My life is a disaster.
AVOIDANT (his) diary: My motorcycle will not start - I simply can not figure out why.
Her feelings are characterized by the fact that she experiences his introversion and interprets it as if he does not want HER - what happens to him is probably that he thinks about how he can solve the problem with his motorcycle and he is therefore not accessible. This is not durable , as in loving in the long run in their relationship but thats another talk
They both contribute to the "dance". She could - instead of asking him what's wrong - tell him, that she gets upset / insecure when he is that silent. AND that she would like to hea,r about what concerns him, even if it has nothing to do with her, or is not something she can do anything about, or he thinks it will bore her ...
Its often the abmivalent who has to start the conversation, as the avoident dosent notise the disconnection between them
The turmoil in the inner world can lead you to try to keep things in the outer world in a firm grip. Here are examples:
- That your home, car and external appearance appear tip top. - That things in cupboards, drawers and shelves must follow a strict order. - That your performance in your working life should be impressive. - That you should always appear happy, and on top of things - That you must achieve certain goals within your interests. - That kitchen utensils are used in a certain way, that the suitcase is packed in a certain way, etc.
Typically, you may become restless, irritated, or uncomfortable when you do not have full control in one or more areas that are important to your sense of well-being and being in control of things.
When you learn to let go a little, you will become more relaxed and calm - and better at also making room for your inner life.
Understand the goal - of becoming emotionally secuce:
As an avoidant dismissive attatched you may experience: “Why feel negative emotions - it just gives problems? Let me just wait for them to go away while I think about something else. ”
Figuratively speaking, this is equivalent to smoke rising from a house. But you look away because: “what if it burns? Then it would not be so nice. " Sometimes the fire in the house goes out by itself. But other times the fire spreads and the house is damaged.
- your partner repeatedly sends signals that you are absent, but you overhear it. Only when your partner leaves you do you recognize the seriousness and the loss. - your child says: "Father, why are you angry?" But you answer: “I'm not angry. It is you who exaggerates. I just want you to do what I ask you to do. ”Only when your child does not want to see you, develops anxiety or has persistent conflicts with you, do you understand that something has gone wrong. - your employee or colleague says over and over again: "I need to reconcile." But you think, "It can not be that important," you overhear the need and focus on your own goals. Later the consequence hits when you do not reach a deadline. - you are dissatisfied with your job, but overlook the need to find a new one. Only when your body is in serious stress, do you react - and it takes a long time for you to recover afterwards.
IMPORTANT POINT: REMEMBER THAT SOME PROBLEMS DO NOT just GO AWAY.
Conversely, when you understand, reflect and solve emotional problems, anxiety is turned into security and effective problem solving
Meet the attitudes of others with greater openness - and reflect more deeply on your own:
As a child or later in life, you have experienced that you could not trust others. The invisible wounds can affect you in interaction with others, where you can:
- overhear or reject the views of others, without thinking deeper about it. - feel a strong urge to ‘be right’. - be critical and judgmental towards others. - look down on others who show greater openness.
Do you recognize one or more of these tendencies?
Then you can benefit from ‘turning off the autopilot’ and train yourself to be more responsive. Curiously ask yourself:
- What happens when I reflect more deeply on what others say? - Could it be that the other is right? Or that we are both right, but just in different ways? - What happens in the contact when I acknowledge and meet the other person? - What is it like to think: we are equal? Instead of thinking, "I'm above you."
This shift in attention may be unfamiliar and initially can ‘feel wrong’. But it can make you far more open, conscious and competent in your social interactions - and enrich your quality of life.
heaviness in the chest the murmur in the stomach the pressure in the temples.
Notice how you experience peace and joy, for example:
lightness in the body. heat in the stomach. tingling in arms and legs.
Practice connecting your thoughts, words and actions with body sensations.
This is how you can gradually feel better: “What is my gut feeling? Am I doing the right thing right now? “Gradually, regular attention to sensing the body will give you better contact with yourself when you have to make choices. And you will gain a deeper understanding of yourself and others.
Practical tip - daily exercise:
First feel a pleasant body sensation and dwell on it. Then feel an unpleasant body sensation. Finally, turn your attention back to the pleasant sensation in the body.
You build your inner strength to feel and accommodate discomfort, You counteract repression - and become less likely to push unpleasant sensations away. You build inner freedom and self-control: the experience that you do not have to 'get stuck' in the discomfort, even if you are aware of it. The exercise will contribute to more inner peace and help you on the way to developing a secure attachment style.
Example: The young child who is insecure, hurt, anxious or upset is affected by an insecure relationship with father or mother or other caregivers.
When the emotions are not seen, understood and handled in a competent way, the child experiences:
“The inner world is dangerous. If I feel something difficult, there is no solution to it. So I better avoid noticing it. It is the external world - e.g. my toys, my status among other children or my activities - that give me security. ”
How do you treat the wound as an adult?
As an adult, the wound can lead you to try to avoid negative emotions. Your own and others'. Because you still experience that negative emotions are dangerous terrain:
- Be aware: try to feel your vulnerable, negative and hurt feelings. - Be aware of the feelings you get when others have negative feelings - instead of automatically pulling away - either physically or mentally. - Understand the opposing emotions, e.g. that one can be happy and sad at the same time. - Put words on the different emotions. Either by writing them in a diary or talking to a confidant. Words can release and give a deeper understanding of the emotions. This will also help you to better understand the feelings of others.
By taking these steps, you will learn to navigate more consciously in your emotional life - and to feel more whole, alive and calm inside.
IMPORTANT POINT: WHEN YOU DO NOT FEEL NEGATIVE EMOTIONS, YOU WILL ALSO have a tendency to TURN OFF POSITIVE EMOTIONS
Control the urge to shut yourself off when you are having a hard time:
If you are having a hard time because you are disappointed, hurt, or stressed, you may tend to quickly judge others negatively. For example:
- “If this is how you want it, fine. I just keep to myself. I do not need you."
Doing so for a shorter or longer period of time creates unrest, stress and distance in your relationships with others. Practice communicating your emotions in a more direct, conscious and competent way. For example:
- “I thought we were going to have a nice evening. But then you come home and start criticizing me. I feel misunderstood and treated unfairly. Im qourious -What about you, what do you experience? ”
GOING INTO AN OPEN AND RESPECTFUL DIALOGUE ABOUT DIFFICULT FEELINGS, REQUIRES SINCERITY and ALSO THESE SKILLS:
- that you can feel sensations in your body and are aware of your own emotional life. - that you do not automatically assume that you are right and that your partner is wrong. - that you may experience your partner / the person you are having a conversation with as equal (if not, you will typically be met with hostility because the partner/the other person finds it uncomfortable to be interpreted as less than).
If you find it difficult to communicate competently and problem-solvingly about emotions, you can benefit from practicing several of the previous tips and exercises.
Take time to ‘go through your shell’ and turn your attention away from the outside world where you have sought refuge and towards your inner world to learn to become familiar with it and feel safe in it.
Ask yourself what helps you. Examples can be:
- to turn off the screen. - not to make any appointments half a day on the weekend. - keep yourself from arranging practical things. - take deep breaths, relax or meditate. - be alone. - set a fixed time of day / week, where you ensure you go inward. - talking to a friend, partner or therapist about your inner life.
IMPORTANT POINT: YOU WILL EXPERIENCE RESISTANCE WHEN YOU HAVE TO GO INWARDS. THEREFORE USE YOUR SELF-CONTROL TO break throug the resistance.
The benefit of maintaining the routine is the deep inner peace and quality of life you will gradually experience.
Practice giving and receiving support - instead of expecting you and others to do everything by yourself/themselves:
Giving and receiving support will activate the areas of the brain that are related to positive social contact. You can e.g. train these brain areas by:
- listening to someone else who is having a hard time - even express vulnerable feelings - give and receive understanding and support
Important point: research shows that being able to give and receive help is a sign of strength and mental health.
Go against the tendency to interpret yourself or others as ‘weak’ by receiving support. Different areas of the brain become active by:
Feeling sorry for: the one who provides support feels better, stronger and ‘more worthy’ than the one who receives support.
Compassion: the one who provides support feels connected and equal to the one who receives support. Do not see yourself and others through the lens of pity. Look at yourself and others with compassion.