The dread of having a deep emotional or physical connection with another person is also known as avoidance anxiety or intimacy avoidance.
Others who are terrified of intimacy don’t usually seek to avoid it; in fact, they may want it. Nonetheless, they often drive people away or even break relationships.
It may take some time to overcome this fear and anxiety, both in terms of studying and comprehending the underlying reasons and in terms of practicing permitting greater vulnerability via the ways listed below:
- Make allowance for uncertainties
Those afraid of closeness are also afraid of the repercussions of a bad relationship—accepting that there are no certainties in life or human relationships is critical.
Every interaction with another person is a risk. Regardless, social ties remain a fundamental driving force in human life.
Although it may be awkward at first, it is critical to begin sharing your concerns and anxieties. Say what you believe you should say, not what you think you should say. Learning about emotional words might help you communicate more effectively.
If you’re in a relationship with someone afraid of intimacy, learn to softly express what you believe they’re experiencing and why you think they’re feeling that way. This may assist them in being more conscious of their emotions.
It has been discovered that establishing good connection experiences may reduce fear and that practicing bravery can make a difference.
Make sure you’re doing this with someone you feel you can trust. Rather than keeping your eye on the result that pleases you, try to concentrate on their day-to-day life.
- Maintain a safe space
When someone is afraid of intimacy, they may behave in ways that alienate their partner, like turning off or fleeing.
Don’t take anything too seriously. It’s sometimes easier for them to act in predictable ways.
They may need some time and space. Be patient and helpful instead of reacting with rage or irritation.
They must first be at ease with themselves to effectively overcome the phobia of intimacy. Rejection isn’t as terrible as it may seem if they could only fully understand and embrace their worth as a person.
Through this, people will be able to create proper limits to prevent becoming engulfed and deal with desertion if it occurs.
Self-compassion may seem a piece of cake to some, but it’s not necessarily intuitive for others.
If you don’t know where to begin, various fantastic workbooks and books are available on Amazon and other stores.
- Consider therapy
A therapist can assist you in understanding the emotions behind your actions and give you coping skills. Talk therapy or psychotherapy, cognitive therapy, and marriage counseling are just a few valuable treatments available.
You should propose this solution without putting any pressure on your partner since they may not be ready to take this step.
If it’s your spouse, offer to join in couples therapy. You may consider family therapy if you’re helping a parent, sibling, or kid.
The purpose of therapy is to pinpoint the source of worry and then devise coping mechanisms. Intimacy problems may sometimes be caused by complex circumstances that take time for a therapist to figure out.
People suffering from anxiety are taught to label their feelings by mental health specialists. Rather than suppressing or ignoring the fear, confronting and naming it might help to lessen its impact.
It takes a long time to overcome a phobia of closeness. Even if you think you two have made progress, it would have its fair share of setbacks.
When this occurs, forgive yourselves and express gentle words to your inner self.
Try not to see your significant other’s fear as a weakness in their personality. Instead, see it as their distant past that both of you could work through to improve your future.