Psychology might be a field that is studied, known but sometimes not totally understood by the common people. Everything in our brains and lives is connected to the person we are, even if in an unconscious way. The attachments we live during early ages of our existence impacts and determines our path in a powerful way.
Understanding the attachments that we have in our lives, to our parents, our partners or friends might help us understand how we live our lives and, in particular, our relationships. Undoubtedly, our previous relationships served as a model for how we expect the world to function and how we anticipate other people’s behaviors.
Without knowing, the human being is drawn to recreate old patterns and dynamics from the past to the present. If someone experiences an insecure attachment pattern, that person will be more likely to re-experience insecurity in closest relationships, especially with romantic partners and children of their own.
If in early ages an individual experienced an insecure attachment pattern, he or she will go unintentionally to recreate painful experiences in future relationships. The reason lies in the models that were left to that person to feel insecure and insensitive to her/himself. This way, choosing a partner may go eventually wrong.
These individuals often choose people with whom they can relive the relationship dynamics from the past. Or else, they distort or provoke others to recreate the familiar emotional climate in which they grew up and feel identical.
As adults, everyone is able to heal and recover from these attachment patterns. Here are three ways to do it.
- Creating a clear narrative
- Having a partner with a healthy attachment style
- Going to therapy
Creating a clear narrative goes through making sense and feel the full pain of the past. Being able to create a clear narrative of our past is the key to repair our attachment abilities. If we face our stories and make sense out of our narrative, by understanding it, we can change the course of our lives, relationships and the attachment patterns we pass on to our kids.
While children, our parents passed on to us attachment patterns and they are mainly the responsible factor that shaped our personality. Passing the legacy of a painful past to our children will make them also become hurt as parents were before. Telling our stories in a coherent way can help us resolve issues of our previous experiences. If not, people are likely to be triggered and affected by the traumas of their lives in a way of which they are not aware but causes sorrow.
Having a partner with a healthy attachment style might be challenging because we don’t choose who we love. However, we do choose with whom we stay. Loving someone doesn’t necessarily mean that person is good for us. Remaining in a relationship for a long term it is important to people who are healing attachment behaviors.
When we develop a secure attachment to someone who has a healthy attachment pattern, we can develop inner security because we are experiencing new models for how a relationship works. For instance, if a parent left us experiencing anxiety, jealousy or fear, in our adult relationships we can gain from being with someone who is calm and reliable.
Falling in love with insecure people will happen to some of us and these situations are not hopeless. People don’t always have to rely on someone else to heal or to develop inner security. We can do it ourselves to grow stronger and have healthy relationships as a result. All of this depends on people’s personality and the best way of dealing with the situation.
Going to therapy can’t make you wrong. Having an emotional correction experience with a professional who can provide a secure base helps us to make sense out of our past, which is a big plus.
Every single one of us has felt emotional pain, even those who believe they grew up with a secure attachment pattern. Well, you can even suffer from being too attached to a sports teams (New York Mets fans, we fell you, the odds to win the World Series aren’t looking great). However, just like in sports, a new season comes, and the future brings hope. And studies say that actually sports fans are happier and healthier!
On a more serious note, all people experience break-ups and relationships ruptures, pacific or not. Being able to fortify your inner self with strong security and secure attachments will give you more freedom to live your life emotionally healthy and unrestricted.
Author: Ines Marinho