Anxious attachment, also known as preoccupied or anxious ambivalent. It is a combination of high anxiety and low avoidance traits. They experience great concern that they may be abandoned -so it is difficult for them to be emotionally present, they’re constantly ruminating about the stability or future of their partnership.
they have a strong desire for closeness, communication, and availability.
Desire for reassurance from their partner that they are loved and appreciated.
An easily activated nervous system in response to a sense of disconnection.
“I don’t feel seen or appreciated in the partnership,” they may shift to behaviors that are incongruent with their internal experience
They may become critical when they really want closeness.
The boundaries may feel confusing or lacking.
Their communication style can shift drastically
When they’re emotionally triggered they become agitated or angry in their tone and shift toward criticism and contempt.
When they feel abandoned They communicate the desperation that they intensely feel.
They may say things that sound dramatic.
They seek closeness and consistent open communication. They would much rather stay in regular contact than experience lulls in communication.
They may initially agree to something that makes them uncomfortable, but their anxiety may slowly creep in and shift their approach to the situation.
They may become clingy and reach out if they perceive the firm boundary as rejection, they can be agitated and critical.
This is designed to bring their partner closer. The partner is sometimes more responsive than they were before the argument and it engages the partner.
Another aspect is sometimes they reject reconnection.
Once it is available, it can feel overwhelming and to activating to reconnect once it is available to them. Reconnecting after an argument can be difficult with a person with a style.
“My needs are not as important as this connection.”
“My needs are more likely to be met if I am in connection and I focus on the well-being of others.”
This person wants to spend more time together, possibly all the time together.
Focus on reconnecting emotionally.
Step into their shoes.
It feels like the person is too needy, coming on too strong, clingy.
Are you expecting your partner to accommodate all your needs?
Do you feel any shame for having wants and needs? Do you feel like you’re too much?
I need to take a step back?
It’s OK to want to check in and communicate your experience.
Do you understand your partner’s coping skills, and how they respond to you?
One of the most effective ways to experience co-regulation is by engaging in a 20 second hug with your partner.
Affection between supportive partners lowers blood pressure and stress response, both of which are so powerful in daily life.
If you were in relationship with this person, know that the conflict comes from their internal distress.
They seem frustrated or angry externally. Learn to co regulate as well as self regulate.