top of page

Insecure Attachments: Can Contribute to Relationship Angst Later in Life!

Did you know that your current relationship patterns often thread back to your earliest childhood years and your bond with your parents? We often refer to this bonding as attachment, which begins at birth.

Secure attachment is the ideal attachment style needed to enjoy healthy boundaries, relationships, and social engagement. This is developed by the child having caregivers who are positively attuned to the child, provide a safe haven with consistency and “good enough” care, attention and affection. Feeling secure with their primary and other relationships, these people believe, “I am okay, and you are okay.”

However, when we grow up feeling insecure in our relationships to primary caregivers, siblings, peers, friends and others, then we are tentative, uncertain, and mistrusting. Curiously, we may or may not be aware of this. However, there are certain behavioral styles that provide clues to our ability to attach securely or not.

In insecure attachment, the individual may have grown up believing, "I am not okay and you are not okay." There relationships were so unpredictable and insecure they now have issues with self-trust and trusting others is very difficult. Depending on their early years, adults can also have insecurities around, "I am not okay, but you are okay." These people tend to please and placate others due to their own lack of self-confidence.

Finally, there is the person who believes, "I am okay but you are not okay." In this situation the individual tends to have a high need for control, as they do not trust others will say or do things to their standards. The individual who “suffers” from insecure attachment, regardless of which type, is likely to have low self-esteem. As a result, they will always feel anxious in their relationships and have a high need for external validation from others.

Additional characteristics of an individual with insecure attachment include:
  • Highly critical of those around them.

  • Mind-games in order to draw the attention of the partner.

  • Afraid of commitment.

  • The idealization of other relationships.

  • Organizational difficulties.

  • “Come here-Go away” attitude in the relationship; also, known as push/pull.

  • Personal desires are more important than the partner’s wishes.

  • Poor communication skills.

  • Avoid displaying emotions.

  • Passive roles in relationships.

  • Tend to hide their vulnerabilities or pretend they have none.

In families where the attachments to parents or authority figures are insecure, children will often adapt different coping styles: the good child; the rebel; the comic who over uses humor; the one who withdraws or avoids. We often take these styles into our adulthood and they form the basis of many of our relationships

The problem is these styles are defense mechanisms to keep us safe and secure. They do not allow for authenticity, which is an embrace and openness to both our strengths and vulnerabilities; our connection to our emotions and both the consciousness and acceptance of what we are feeling without any self-judgment; without punishing ourselves for past mistakes; or believing we are powerless.

When we are self-aware we can offer ourselves the choice of accepting our entire self, the parts we like and the parts we don't like; our fears and our strengths; our anxiety and our certainty. We can dump false conclusions born out of insecure attachments that cause us to believe: we are not good enough; loveable enough; not smart enough, important enough etc.

As adults we can re-connect to our internal self; we can remind ourselves our souls are perfection; we can choose new beliefs and give and bring to ourselves that which makes us 'whole and authentic.' We can release our insecurities and create secure, healthy attachments based on knowing who we really are and what we need.

With Gratitude,


Featured Posts
Recent Posts
Follow Us
  • Facebook Basic Square
  • Twitter Basic Square
  • Google+ Basic Square
bottom of page