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    This sounds so much like me in my twenties, and to a lesser extent it still happens. First of all, work on having compassion for yourself. You were hurt by your family relationships and that is not your fault. However, know it is possible to change these patterns but it will take much diligence and practice. I would start some sort of mindfulness practice. Every time you have these racing thoughts sit and close your eye and take deep breaths. I like to have some sort of mantra, the one I use is “you are not your thoughts.” This comes from buddhist philosophy, but choose something that works for you. Maybe it would be helpful to go for a walk and leave your phone at home. I also have a lot of anxiety about people texting back – I think cell phones have made this so much worse because we assume that people are available 24/7 and if they don’t text back it must mean something about us! Remind yourself this is not true – there are millions of reasons why people take their time to text back. If he is getting back to you eventually he is most likely busy as you say.

    It’s also so important to cultivate a strong sense of self outside your relationship. Clearly this person sees something of value in you that you don’t see yourself. Try to focus on what it is that makes you special and good. It is really critical that you bring as much awareness to your patterns as you can – that is the key to undoing them, which it sounds like you have begun to see this. Also recognize this person is NOT perfect. When we first enter into a relationship with someone, our neurobiology tricks us into seeing them as perfect because our drive to bond with our mates is so strong. It is only a matter of time before you will see that this person has flaws like everybody else. On that same note, if this person is as great as you say he is, then why don’t you share with him that you feel a little insecure? You don’t need to divulge every detail, but I think you could say something about how you tend to be insecure in relationships because of your past but you are committed to working on it. If he is a good and decent person he will be empathetic and understanding. If he isn’t understanding that tells you a lot about his character – and its good information because you don’t want to be with someone who can’t hold space for the issues you are working through.

    Also you are very young. Being aware of these issues and working on them will help calm these patterns in the future. There is a good chance this relationship will not last based on the fact that many relationships at your age don’t last. You should work on finding the confidence to know that you will be ok no matter what happens in this relationship, and if it doesn’t last you are making room for something better!!

    A lot of people have similar issues with attachment (read up on anxious attachment styles and how to manage them) – so you are not alone. Be kind to yourself and start putting in the work so you can have happy healthy relationships :).

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