There’s a lot of talk and information online about the fear of intimacy being related to social phobia or different anxieties. But it’s more important for us to actually dive into where the fear of intimacy comes from so we can work on ourselves individually and help better our relationships.
If you’re in a relationship with someone who has the fear of intimacy and you find them often putting you off or maybe they’re not giving you as much attention as you need, know that that doesn’t always mean that they don’t care. Often people who struggle with the fear of intimacy will think that they’re giving you as much attention as you possibly need and being as emotionally available as they would want.
How Fear Of Intimacy Is Formed?
Generally, the fear of intimacy comes from us not having a secure attachment. A secure attachment is what forms when we are small children whenever we express discontent, being uncomfortable or something may be hurting us. A parent comes in to soothe us and let us know that our emotions are okay. It makes us feel that it’s like very validating. That’s how we form a secure attachment.
An insecure attachment, on the other hand, is when we express discontent, but a parent doesn’t show up. The reason this leads to fear of intimacy is because many people grow up thinking that the emotions they feel are not okay. So they think that the only safe way to be is to not feel any of these emotions. They stick their emotion within and hope that it goes away. Then when we’re adults, it can even be scary to consider feeling things and letting those emotions out.
Those of us who really struggle with fear of fear of intimacy don’t usually know what to do and usually it takes us awhile to even recognize this is something that we struggle with. But don’t worry, you can do it. Here are five ways that could help you overcome your fear of intimacy;
- Practice expressing how you feel as well as communicating your emotions.
- Use feeling sheets/charts to track your emotions each day. Do it at least twice a day, morning and evening.
- Practice reading emotions on others.
- Many people who struggle with fear of intimacy have a hard time reading other people because some people might not come out and say it to us directly. Have a trusted friend or loved one who you can bounce this off as you practice. The more you practice, the better you improve and the quicker you can actually read people’s emotions.
- Practice calming techniques. Whether or not you’re in a distressing place, start practicing the breathing and distraction techniques. There can be a bunch of different things that you can do to help yourself relax.
Be patient. All of these things take a lot of time and practice. But it does get better and it does get easier. Just give yourself a little time. It just takes practicing day in and day out before it becomes an automatic thing that you do. So just be patient, you’re doing the best you can.