Anxious Attachment in Dating: Is It a You Problem or Them?


As humans, we all have different attachment styles that determine how we relate to others in relationships. For some, an anxious attachment style can create feelings of insecurity and fear, while others may be struggling with a partner who doesn’t make them feel safe. 

In this article, we’ll explore the differences between an anxious attachment style and dating someone who doesn’t provide a sense of security. We’ll also discuss how anxiety and relationship counselling can help you navigate these challenges and build a healthier, more secure connection with your partner.

Understanding Anxious Attachment

An anxious attachment style is characterized by a powerful desire for closeness coupled with a pervasive fear of abandonment or rejection. Individuals with this attachment style may experience chronic feelings of insecurity and worry, constantly seeking reassurance from their partner. This can manifest in several ways, such as:

  • Being overly sensitive to perceived slights or changes in their partner’s mood
  • Needing constant validation and reassurance that the relationship is secure
  • Clinging to their partner or becoming excessively dependent
  • Experiencing significant distress when their partner is unavailable or unresponsive

These behaviours can be challenging for both individuals in the relationship, as the anxiously attached person may struggle with feelings of unworthiness, while their partner may feel overwhelmed or smothered.

Recognizing When Your Partner Doesn’t Make You Feel Safe

While an anxious attachment style can contribute to feelings of insecurity, it’s also important to recognize when your partner may not provide the emotional safety and support you need in a relationship. This can occur in several ways, such as:

  • Consistently disregarding your needs and feelings
  • Being emotionally unavailable or distant
  • Being overly critical or demeaning
  • Using manipulation or control tactics to maintain power in the relationship
  • Exhibiting patterns of dishonesty or infidelity

When one partner doesn’t make the other feel safe, it can lead to a toxic relationship dynamic characterized by insecurity, distrust, and emotional turmoil.

Distinguishing Between Anxious Attachment and an Unsafe Partner

To determine whether your insecurity stems from an anxious attachment style or a partner who doesn’t make you feel safe, it’s vital to assess the patterns and behaviours in your relationship. This can involve asking yourself questions such as:

  • Do I consistently feel unsupported or dismissed by my partner?
  • Does my partner engage in behaviours that undermine trust or security in the relationship?
  • Are my feelings of insecurity primarily driven by a fear of abandonment or rejection, or can they be attributed to specific actions or patterns of behaviour from my partner?

By reflecting on these questions and paying close attention to the dynamics at play in your relationship, you can better understand the source of your insecurity and how to best address it.

How Anxiety Counselling and Relationship Counselling Can Help

If you recognize that your anxious attachment style contributes to feelings of insecurity in your relationship, anxiety counselling with a qualified therapist can be invaluable. Through therapy, you can explore the root causes of your attachment style, develop strategies for managing anxiety and insecurity, and learn healthier ways to communicate and connect with your partner.

In cases where your partner’s actions or behaviours contribute to feelings of insecurity, relationship counselling can benefit both partners. With the support of a therapist, couples can work to identify and address the issues undermining the security and trust in their relationship. This may involve learning new communication strategies, establishing boundaries, and working to create a more balanced and supportive partnership.

It’s Me, I’m the Problem…or Is It?

Feeling secure and emotionally safe in a relationship is essential for fostering a healthy, fulfilling connection with your partner. Whether you’re struggling with an anxious attachment style or navigating a relationship with someone who doesn’t make you feel safe, anxiety counselling and relationship counselling can provide the support and guidance you need to overcome these challenges and build a stronger, more secure bond with your partner.

If you’re struggling with anxiety or negative behaviours that jeopardize your relationship with others, don’t face it alone. Blue Sky Wellness Clinic is here to support you every step of the way. 

Our experienced counsellors provide a safe, non-judgmental space for anxiety counselling in Vancouver to help you navigate life’s challenges. Let us equip you with the tools you need to move forward in a healthy and resilient way. Book your appointment today and take the first step towards an improved you.

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