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Avoidant Attachment Style in Relationships

Published 27/05/2023 by Joanne Jones

Avoidant Attachment Style in Relationships

People with an avoidant attachment style in relationships tend to avoid emotional human connections with others and may struggle with intimacy and have anxiety about closeness.

This attachment can manifest in several ways, including an aversion to physical touch or a reluctance to share personal details and emotions with their partner.

Individuals with an avoidant style may also prioritize independence and self-reliance in their relationships.

Research has shown that avoidant attachment style in relationships often develops due to childhood and life experiences. As a result, people with avoidant traits may have learned to suppress their emotional needs and desire closeness to avoid potential rejection or disappointment.

There are 4 different types of attachment types in relationships:

Avoidant Attachment

Avoidant attachment is a complex psychological condition that emerges during early childhood due to inadequate emotional care and support from primary caregivers.

Children with this attachment type may subconsciously avoid seeking comfort or support from their parents or caretakers to cope with their unfulfilled emotional needs. As the child grows older, this emotional detachment can manifest in various ways, such as difficulty in fostering deep and meaningful relationships with others.

The reason behind the development of avoidant attachment lies in the child's internal working model of relationships.

When a child's needs are overlooked or ignored repeatedly, they learn to suppress their emotions and distance themselves from their caretakers to protect themselves from rejection and disappointment.

This coping mechanism can leave the child feeling emotionally isolated and disconnected from others, making it challenging to form and maintain healthy relationships later in life.

While it is natural for young children to explore the world around them and become independent, children with avoidant traits may exhibit excessive independence around their primary caretakers from an early age.

With the right interventions and support, you can learn to heal past wounds and build healthier relationships in the future.

What Is Avoidant Attachment in Relationships?

Avoidance in relationships is one of the most observed in adult romantic relationships. It refers to a pattern of emotionally distant and self-reliant behaviour that reflects a deep-seated fear of rejection, intimacy, and vulnerability.

People with avoidant traits tend to avoid emotional closeness and physical contact with their partners, and they often withdraw or shut down when their partners express their feelings or try to connect with them, as this is seen as a source of distress.

In romantic relationships, avoidant and anxious attachment styles can lead to difficult situations and complications, including emotional distance, lack of communication, and difficulty building and maintaining a deep and lasting connection.

People with an avoidant style may struggle to express emotions or show affection, leaving their partners feeling neglected and unloved.

Signs of Avoidant Attachment

People with avoidant traits display some distinctive signs that manifest in their behaviour patterns, cognitions, and emotional responses.

These signs primarily revolve around an intense fear of avoiding intimate relationships and emotional connection with others. Here are some specific signs of avoidance:

  1. Difficulty forming close adult relationships: They find it challenging to establish deep connections and meaningful relationships with others. They tend to keep themselves emotionally distanced from others due to their confused feelings and avoid sharing personal thoughts with them.
  2. Fear of intimacy: Avoidant individuals often feel anxious about closeness and feel uncomfortable in situations that require emotional intimacy. They may shy away from physical affection, such as hugging or kissing, and prefer to keep a safe emotional distance.
  3. Discomfort with vulnerability: People with an avoidant style may view vulnerability as a weakness and prefer to maintain a sense of independence and self-sufficiency. They avoid showing vulnerability to others and may struggle to accept help or support when needed.
  4. Emotional detachment: Avoidant people may seem emotionally detached and unresponsive to others' needs. They might suppress their emotions or any emotional contact and appear cold and unfeeling, which can lead to a lack of empathy.
  5. Intense fear of commitment: They may fear commitment or any form of deep connection. These people may feel uncomfortable with a long-term relationship or exclusivity and prefer to keep their options open.
  6. Dismissive attitude towards relationships: People with an avoidant style may dismiss relationships' importance and treat them as trivial. They may view love and emotional intimacy as unnecessary and prefer to focus on their goals and interests.

Uncomfortable With Closeness

Individuals displaying signs of avoidance are often uncomfortable with intimacy and closeness in their relationships.

They may find it challenging to confide in others, express their emotions, and share their thoughts and feelings about important issues with their partners.

Avoidantly attached individuals may actively avoid physical intimacy and sexual contact to avoid the vulnerability that comes with deep emotional connections.

Don't Open Up

Individuals with avoidance often exhibit specific signs indicating their emotional distance and difficulty forming close relationships.

One of the most prominent signs of this is a reluctance to open up and share personal information with others.

They hold back from revealing their often-confused feelings and experiences, even to those they perceive as close friends or romantic partners.

They often feel uncomfortable or anxious when asked to share personal information and may deflect or avoid the question altogether. This tendency to withhold information can be incredibly frustrating for those attempting to build a closer relationship with them.

Difficulty Trusting

Individuals with an avoidant style often exhibit signs of difficulty trusting others, which can be displayed in various ways.

They may have difficulty trusting others with their thoughts, feelings, and emotions. They may avoid sharing personal information or their innermost thoughts and desires, leading to emotional distance in relationships, as their partners may feel they are not fully invested or engaged.

Maintain Boundaries

The reluctance to form close relationships or intimate connections with others is a clear sign of avoidant traits.

One of the most prominent avoidant traits is maintaining strong physical and emotional boundaries to keep others at a distance.

They need personal space and may feel uncomfortable or anxious when their boundaries are threatened or infringed upon.

Resolve Conflict Alone

When it comes to conflict resolution, people with avoidance issues try to handle it alone. They avoid direct communication, prefer to be silent or dismissive, and try to minimize the problem instead of engaging in open discussion.

One of the primary reasons behind this behaviour is the fear of rejection and abandonment. They have developed a negative view of themselves and believe that expressing their feelings or emotions may be perceived negatively by their partners, leading to adverse outcomes like rejection or abandonment.

This fear, in turn, reinforces the desire to avoid emotional closeness and communication.

Distance Themselves

Distancing themselves physically and emotionally from others is a clear sign of avoidance. They may avoid physical proximity with others, such as consciously sitting farther away or purposely not making eye contact.

This distance likely stems from their fear of becoming too close to others and ultimately being hurt or rejected.

They may also avoid emotional closeness, preferring to keep their feelings and thoughts to themselves rather than share with others, which can lead to emotional detachment and isolation.


Avoidant persons prioritize independence and self-reliance over forming close relationships with others.

They may believe that depending on others will lead to disappointment, rejection, or loss, and therefore avoid seeking emotional support from others.

These individuals often have a heightened sense of self-sufficiency and may downplay the importance of interpersonal connections and emotional intimacy.

How Do You Overcome Avoidant Attachment in Relationships?

Overcoming avoidance in relationships can be challenging, but it is worth taking to develop strong and healthy relationships.

Overcoming this requires a willingness to work through past traumas, build self-awareness, and practice vulnerability.

One effective way to begin overcoming an avoidant style is to seek therapy. A trained therapist can help you identify the patterns of behaviour contributing to your intimacy issues and provide tools and strategies to help you overcome those barriers.

Some people choose to talk to live psychic readers as a form of therapy to help work through past traumas or unresolved emotional issues and negative energies that may be contributing.

Practising self-awareness and reflecting on your thoughts, feelings, and behaviours in your relationships is a great way to work through your attachment issues.

Identify the things that trigger your avoidance of emotional intimacy and work to challenge those thoughts and feelings. Keeping a diary to track your emotions and learn more about your relationship needs and desires can also be helpful.

Practice being open and vulnerable with your feelings and thoughts and being willing to open up emotionally to others and take risks in your relationships.

It may feel uncomfortable initially, but the more you practice vulnerability, the easier it will become to form close and meaningful connections.

Love Readings

Love Readings with Trusted Psychics live psychic readers and live messenger psychics can provide valuable insights into your attachment type, allowing you to understand your relationship patterns better.

Every individual develops a specific attachment type based on their early experiences with caregivers, which will lead to their style of attachment in adulthood. This attachment type can impact how you relate to your romantic partner and your ability to form healthy, fulfilling relationships.

Those with an anxious-avoidant attachment style may struggle with feelings of insecurity and a fear of abandonment, leading them to seek constant reassurance from their partner.

People with an avoidant style may struggle with intimacy and find it difficult to connect with their partners fully.

By having a Love Reading with Trusted Psychics, you can better understand your attachment type or avoidant behaviours and how they may impact your love life.

The live psychic readers can help you identify any negative patterns that may be holding you back from finding true love. They can also provide guidance and advice on overcoming these negative patterns, allowing you to form healthy and fulfilling relationships.


What Is Avoidant Attachment Style, and How Does It Manifest in Romantic Relationships?

It is a psychological term pertaining to how a person forms emotional bonds with others, particularly in romantic relationships.

People with an avoidant style often experience difficulties developing close and intimate relationships as they tend to keep their partners emotionally distant.

Avoidant attachment in relationships often manifests in their behaviour by creating distance and avoiding intimacy. They can become emotionally unavailable and prioritize their independence over their partner's needs.

They may also struggle with commitment and sharing their feelings. Their detachment can leave their partners feeling insecure and hurt, potentially resulting in regular arguments.

Can Someone With an Avoidant Attachment Style Change Their Behaviour and Develop More Secure Attachment Patterns?

The good news is that attachment types are not fixed and can be changed with intentional effort and support.

Avoidant persons can develop more secure attachment patterns with the right therapeutic approach.

One approach in the attachment theory that has shown promise is called attachment-based therapy, which focuses on helping individuals understand their attachment type, identify attachment-related fears and needs, and develop skills and strategies to communicate and connect more effectively with others.

What Common Challenges or Conflicts Arise in Relationships Where One Partner Has an Avoidant Attachment Style?

Individuals with an avoidant style tend to struggle with emotional intimacy and closeness in relationships. They may prioritize their independence and personal space over spending quality time with their partner.

This tendency can lead to feelings of neglect or abandonment in their partner, causing conflicts.

Another common challenge in these relationships is difficulty with communication. Avoidant individuals may become defensive or withdraw when their partner expresses emotions or needs, which can further rupture the emotional bond in the relationship.

This lack of communication will lead to misunderstandings, resentments, and hurt feelings for their partner.

Avoidant individuals may have trouble acknowledging and expressing their emotions and needs.

This often makes it challenging for their partner to provide the emotional support they crave, creating a power imbalance in the relationship, where the avoidant partner holds the emotional control and may unintentionally cause the other partner to feel disappointed or unfulfilled.

How Can Someone Dating or in a Relationship With Someone With an Avoidant Attachment Style Support Their Partner While Also Caring for Their Needs?

It can be challenging to sustain a relationship with someone with an insecure attachment style.

With the right tools, building a strong and healthy bond and creating a more secure attachment style is possible. The first step is to understand that your partner's behaviour is not about you but how they were brought up and their past relationships. It is their defence mechanism against getting hurt.

To support your romantic partner, you must give them space whenever needed. Avoidant partners tend to pull away when they feel overwhelmed, so respecting their boundaries and avoiding being too clingy or needy is essential.

Be supportive of their progress and encourage communication. Help them identify their fears and reassure them that their feelings are valid.

Are There Any Specific Communication Strategies or Approaches That Can Be Helpful in Navigating Relationships With Someone Who Has an Avoidant Attachment Style?

When dealing with a person who has an avoidant style, it is crucial to recognize that these people often struggle with forming close relationships and can withdraw when they feel threatened, overwhelmed or in stressful situations.

One effective attachment strategy is to provide a safe space to express their thoughts and feelings, which may involve actively listening, asking open-ended questions, and practising empathy and validation.

It is essential to avoid being critical or overly demanding, as this can trigger the person's avoidance behaviours and slow any progress in the relationship.

It can also be helpful to negotiate healthy boundaries and expectations in the relationship, as this can reduce an anxious partner's nerves and uncertainty, making them feel more comfortable and secure.

Respecting the person's need for space and privacy while expressing your own needs and desires respectfully and non-threateningly is essential.

Another positive attachment strategy is building trust and intimacy slowly and gradually over time, which may involve sharing personal stories, engaging in activities, and finding common interests.

Ultimately, navigating a relationship with someone with an avoidant attachment style can be challenging, but with patience, understanding, and effective communication strategies, it is possible to build a happy and fulfilling relationship.

Seeking guidance from a Trusted Psychic reader can also prove incredibly beneficial in navigating the complexities of attachment styles and relationships.

Read More on the 4 Attachment Styles.

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