ACoAs – Fear of Commitment (Part 2)

acoas fearI DUMP ON ANYONE
who tries to love me


SITE:10 most common fears” & more….


2. RE-ENACTING (cont.)
As stated in Part 1, besides ‘close’ relationships, Fear of Commitment (FoC) also shows up as not giving our all at school or work, at home or in public…. It’s a fear of giving our best, convinced that our best will be considered “not good enough”. That leaves us ashamed, lonely & scared.
BUT – ‘not-our-best’ according to whom??? Well, as long as our WIC is running things (via beliefs & emotions) we’re living in the past, assuming everyone will treat us exactly like our family did/does, even when we’ve had many experiences to the contrary.

Many ACoAs long for a positive, steady relationship & a better over-all life. Yet no matter how hard they try they keep missing the brass ring. The WIC’s terror of reproducing the dangerous intimacy of our original Parent-Child bond is so strong it prevents us from finding the love & acceptance we crave.

❤️ What can make the difference is the creation of a strong, healthy internal Loving Parent who will pull the WIC away from the PP, & forming a connection to a loving H.P., proving there’s another way to bond with others – safely.

Some REASONS for FoC
a. Fear of abandonment (FoA) – our most basic fear. A = not getting enough of our legitimate childhood PMES needs met, AND being abused in each of those 4 categories. It created the belief that we will always lose what we need & love, so there’s no point in setting ourselves up for more pain by committing (C) to something we care about. It’s one reason ACoAs are ‘best’ at what we like or love to do – the least. It’s inevitable that FoA would create lack of trust. SO – if our parents & other important caretakers neglected & assaulted us, how can we possible believe anyone else would be dependable or care for us?

b. F of leaving family of originwe can’t C. to anything we would like if it takes us away from ‘them’. IF WE:
– are so ‘under their thumb’ that we’re not allowed to make our own choices, or let family pick for you (mates, career, where to live…)
– have emotional incest ties to a parent, we can’t have our own dyad
– are still dealing with a parent who is an active addict, mentally ill or otherwise impaired, so we feel compelled to keep taking care of them, instead of ourselves

c. F of being trappedTo the WIC, C. to anything means never being able have our own space to breathe, NOR to get out of it, if it doesn’t work out the way we hoped.
As kids we were trapped with ‘them’, & the adults were trapped with each other, in dead-end jobs, with relatives they hated, & most of all trapped in their own damage. We swore we’d never let that happen to us, so now we never commit to anything or anyone.

Instead we have our own traps because of:
• NO Options: not allowed to choose (lovers, friends, mates…) for ourselves, whoever wants us gets us,whether we actually want them or not

• NO Boundaries – automatically disappearing / losing ourselves when around others, especially a mate. Not having access to our True Self, we don’t know what our needs, wants or tastes are, come here-go awayso we go along with whatever others expect, want, demand, imply…. This makes us feel suffocated, ‘swamped’, overwhelmed when we / they get too close.

• NO Freedom: we’re stuck because, along with our own FoA, we’re not allowed to leave one of our toxic family rule: “If you don’t like you have to stay”). ACoAs react in one of 2 ways:
– either stay way too long in bad or unsuitable situations OR
– compulsively come & go, isolate or just keep running
<—- “Come here-Go away” dance of FoC (see ‘Boundaries’)

NEXT: FoC – Part 2b

ACoAs & RIGID Boundaries (Part 2)

at all costs

PREVIOUS:  Rigid Bs (Part 1)

SITEFamilies & Groups with Rigid Boundaries

BOOK:  Boundaries & Relationships,
— Charles Whitfield

:  As a result of boundary invasion throughout childhood, ACoAs didn’t develop our own. So our options are:
Thick walls, when both inner & outer Self are barricaded
No Bs, where we let everyone tramp in & out of our head & heart
Partial Bs, protecting only some parts, such as the inner but not the outer Self – usually based on previous bad experiences in similar situations

Rigid Bs effect us & everyone we interact with, BY:
• ‘Abandoning’ ourselves – we ignore or eliminate so many available options that we can’t properly do self-care. Spiritually, we don’t take personal responsibility for our values….
•’Abandoning’ others – we withdraw, sulk, shut down & hide behind our wall, making it almost impossible for anyone to love, help or appreciate us

Safety from stability is very important to us, so all activities have to be predictable – no room for spontaneity or fun, last-minute opportunities, trying new things….  WE:
• are stoic, have stiff body posture, often “stone faced”, trouble giving or receiving physical affection (afraid to let stay awaygo), don’t like to be touched or hugged….
• are sexually cold or just disinterested, have perfunctory or pity-sex, OR are promiscuous without deep enjoyment, don’t use protection
• under-react to personal or external events, whether pleasant or unpleasant, or not at all

• are aloof & disinterested, insensitive to anyone else’s feelings
• don’t seem to identify with other people’s problems, do not want to hear their troubles, especially when very upset or crying
• don’t trust anyone, generally suspicious of other’s motives, can be somewhat paranoid
• fear abandonment and engulfment. No one can get close (we stay too busy, pick fights, often make plans & then cancel or just not show up…), to avoid being disaisolatedppointed, hurt, or taken advantage of
• have few or no close relationships. If we do have a partner, it’s usually in separate places with little shared social life
• seem emotionally numb, don’t show or talk about our feelings, rarely share personal info
• struggle with loneliness, self-disgust, anger & self-control, but cover it well
• are more likely to lie, even about unimportant thing OR omit important facts
• don’t know how to make small talk. Are afraid to say the wrong thing
• don’t like giving anything to anyone. Refuse social invitations
• have trouble identifying needs, wants & dreams
• ignore all feedback. If it’s criticism, it validates our belief that everyone’s against us. If it’s positive we assume it’s not real
• ‘listen’ to others without responding, in our own little world
• stick to pre-conceived ideas (from childhood), with no room for anything nereject helpw
• feel like no one really knows or understands “the real me”
• generally – unconcerned with the world outside of own borders
• have trouble receiving from others. If someone offers we get mad or defensive
• won’t ask for help when needed, don’t know who to ask, believe no one will help anyway, so why try?
• make an effort to go for some goal – BUT all alone, & if we can’t achieve it right away, or fail, we stop trying & do without

Love requires Trust, & trust requires (appropriate) vulnerability.
ACoAs with rigid Bs sabotage any shot at healthy love by shutting out anything unfamiliar…. We keep everyone at arm’s length, pick the wrong people to trust, mistakenly associate all humans with the painful events of the past, assuming everyone is as dangerous as our family was / still is

Unrecovered, all wounded ACoA fear being vulnerable, because it means :
• our WIC will be exposed without protection from a Loving, capable Inner Parent
• we don’t have access to our human rights, not allowed to exercise boundaries, so are easy prey

BOTTOM LINE: Rigid boundaries are walls built around us as a substitute for real ones. (See Healthy Bs.) They’re meant to keep us from getting hurt again, & to get our needs met, by insisting everything be OUR way
UNFORTUNATELY they don’t work to our benefit. We just end up starving !

NEXT:  Healthy Boundaries – INFO (#1)