Am i too clingy or is he pulling away

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    Dear Notebook6:

    I actually had a talk with him yesterday to address my recent insecurities, he explained the decline in interaction… I felt much better after the talk” – the pattern for a person fitting the Anxious Attachment Style is to feel anxious/ insecure=> reach out to significant other (the object of attachment) for reassurance=> feel better=> feel anxious=> reach out… => feel better=> feel anxious/ insecure=> etc., etc., etc.

    For as long as your boyfriend is okay with reassuring you, that’s a good thing, but try to minimize and weaken this pattern. Sometimes, instead of reaching out to him for reassurance, do something else-  use the NPR strategy: Notice your anxiety and need for reassurance, place your need to reach out to him on a Pause, and Redirect your attention from your anxiety and need for reassurance to => exercise, a few yoga postures, a guided meditation, and/ or listening to your favorite song, etc.

    Regarding parenting style from my childhood, I cant tell if my parents has inconsistent parenting style. What I can remember is I grew up with different caretaker as both parents were having their full time job. from the age of 4-6 I was taken care by grandmother and nanny, 7-12 I was sent to day care centre after school, 13-17 I was either sent to aunt’s house or parent’s business shop” –

    – I see this inconsistent parenting in your childhood (the cause of your Anxious Attachment Style): from age 0-4, you were with your mother, you got used to her, you depended on her for everything, you were deeply and thoroughly attached to her, she was your Everything.

    Then at age 4, your Everything left you for long periods of time. I imagine that for weeks or longer, every time she left you, you felt very anxious, waiting for her to come back to you, feeling like you were waiting for an eternity.

    When she left you for what felt like eternities, you found yourself with your grandmother and nanny: they were not your mother! But over time, I imagine that you got used to them and got attached to them. But then, at the age of 7, you were no longer with either one of them after school, instead- you were sent to a day care centre. I imagine that you were distressed by this, as your new objects of attachment (grandmother, nanny) were gone!

    You then got used to the person or people in the day care center for five years. .. but then again, one day (at 13)-  you were no longer in your familiar day care setting, but in new setting, new people: your aunt’s home or your parents’ business shop.

    Not sure if this info is sufficient enough to determine what parenting style I grew up with” – it is sufficient enough as far as I am concerned. But I’ll add this: a child can grow up with a stay-at-home mother (or father) and still grow up anxious and display the Anxious Attachment Style as an adult if the stay at home mother repeatedly got angry and/ or depressed and withdraws from the child: either going to her room and closing the door behind her, or giving the child the silent treatment otherwise.

    still can’t decide if I was growing up with indulgence or neglect care” – maybe you grew up with material indulgence (toys, gifts, etc.), but emotionally, your attachment figures kept changing, causing  you anxiety, starting at 4 and onward. What do you think?


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