“Then why be in a relationship?” she asked.
“Isn’t it all about taking care of each other?”
“If it’s not about meeting each other’s emotional needs?”
“Then what’s the point of it?”
While I don’t think Attachment Theory is entirely to blame for this view, it has certainly become a major contributor. The theory says because when you were a child your parent’s didn’t allow you to “attach” properly, now you struggle with attaching with your romantic partner in adulthood.
Then I come along.
And what do I say instead of this?
It’s not your partner’s job to meet your needs.
And of course, because we do have a basic need to connect with people generally, Attachment Theory makes the leap to suggesting we also have a need to connect with someone romantically.
Your partner becomes your “secure base” they say.
They function as your “safe haven.”
Because you know your partner is “there for you?”
You can explore the world because you’re “secure” in that.
Now when you were a child this all made perfect sense, since you truly were weak and frail and dependent on your parents. But wasn’t the point that your parents would gradually release the reigns, once you developed your own INDEPENDENCE ultimately?
What should your parent’s goal have been?
To make you feel secure, until you became your own person.
Someone who can now face the world on your own.
No longer dependent on them.
As long as you feel like you need someone else to be okay, you are still trying to remain an infant. This is the exact opposite of how things should be, and is a state of arrested development.
This is usually when the peanut gallery chimes in.
“Kel, you’re just saying this because you’re avoidant.”
“As an avoidant you don’t recognize your needs.”
“That you DO need someone to love you!”
But saying we need connection is completely different than saying we need to be dependent on any one person to enjoy it with. You connect with lots of your friends all the time, but you have no sense that you couldn’t live without any one of them.
Romantic connection IS a wonderful thing.
If you’ve read this blog at all, you should know I agree with that.
I’m a BIG proponent of romantic love.
But to enjoy it, you don’t have to become DEPENDENT on anyone.
What do you think? Am I way out of line here suggesting you can enjoy love without becoming dependent, and am I really, as so many people insist, just seeking to justify my own avoidant insecurities?
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