Those of us who are Avoidantly Attached tend to avoid emotional challenges by avoiding them – either checking out mentally or even walking away. If you or someone you love lives with Avoidant Adaptation, you might be wondering where and how this developed.
Avoidantly Attached individuals often did not have their needs met as children, either because the parent was emotionally unavailable or because they simply were not physically present enough to provide connected support and the reassurance necessary to develop Secure Attachment.
#1 Emotionally Absent Caregivers
Caregivers and parents with their own Attachment injury may not have the emotional capacity to provide their children with the security necessary for healthy Attachment.
Because the parent or caregiver never had a consistently emotionally available connection with their own parents, they failed to learn the skills and nuances of comforting and being present.
As the cycle continues, it can contribute to intergenerational trauma.
#2 Physically Absent Caregivers
When mom or dad had other responsibilities vying for their attention, children are often left to their own devices for survival and self-soothing. This can be because of work, large family responsibilities, caring for an ailing elder, or even more tragic cases, such as serious illness or incarceration.
Single parents often have to make the difficult choice of supporting their families by working long hours, leaving siblings or single children to care for themselves. Their absence can over-develop the, “I can take care of myself” mantra of the Avoidantly Adapted individual.
#3 Limited Nurturing Contact
Nurturing contact can range from physical cuddling and hand-holding to comfort or by actively listening and providing eye contact and reassurance through a non-physical connection.
Some families are more forthcoming with affection and connection than others. While hugging may be common in one family, a business-like approach to problem-solving might be popular in another. The key here is that individuals with Avoidant Attachment injury did not feel heard or understood, prohibiting their needs from being met.
Healing Attachment Wounds Is Possible
Fortunately, whether managing the challenges of Avoidant, Ambivalent, or Disorganized Attachment, healing is always possible. We will present the exercises, techniques and evidence-based methods of overcoming Attachment adaptations during our live training series this summer.