RELATIONSHIPS


Tired of relationships bringing out your “crazy?” Maybe this will help.

Amanda McPherson

Do you panic when he doesn’t text you right back?

Have you been called clingy or even crazy by a partner?

Do you bolt from relationships at the first sign of trouble?

Any of these experiences sound familiar? Yeah, me neither. Never. That stuff is for crazy chicks…

OK, fine. Maybe once, just once, I sent a strongly worded text when he didn’t respond in the timeframe I expected. Oh, and there was that time he didn’t call back when he said he would… Yeah, I guess I kind of panicked a little…

What if I told you that we aren’t “crazy?” Our intense feeling of fear and panic is understandable, more common than we think, and it has a name…it’s called Fear of Abandonment. And, as a member of the human species, there is a good chance we have or will experience it.

Being abandoned, hurt or disappointed by a another person can be a painful ordeal that leaves a scar on our minds and hearts. And sadly, unless we live in a bubble, it’s pretty impossible to escape the experience of feeling abandoned – physically and/or emotionally – by someone we love. It’s natural and understandable that we would try our darndest to avoid having to feel that pain again. But, ironically, our hypervigilance to never feel this pain again could be preventing us from being in the kind of intimate relationships we crave so deeply.

Luckily, the book, Love Me Don’t Leave Me – Overcoming Fear of Abandonment and Building Lasting, Loving Relationships,by Dr. Michelle Skeen, is a great resource in helping women understand how our fear of abandonment is impacting our relationships. I had the honor of interviewing Dr. Skeen about her book and was struck by her openness, honesty and compassion. Reading her book feels like you are talking to a trusted friend. She humanizes the experience and helps us to understand that we are not alone in this struggle.

Her approach is refreshing in that she doesn’t try to tell us how irrational we are to have these fears and messy reactions. I mean, we all know better than to freak out, right? But, when the fear of abandonment comes over us, it can feel virtually impossible not to react. Dr. Skeen is honest about the fact that we will likely always have to battle the fear of abandonment to some degree. However, her book offers an incredible arsenal of tools to help us engage in the war on fear.

Love Me, Don’t Leave Me cuts to the core of what many of us dread so deeply – the fear of being abandoned by someone we love. Dr. Skeen encourages us to explore our values and how they inform the choices we make in who we date and how we communicate in our relationships; all-the-while building awareness around where our fear of abandonment is coming from so that we can begin to face it head-on.

This book will give you the tools to be your healthiest self in a relationship – even when your fears are triggered. Love Me, Don’t Leave Me will also help you identify the types of people who trigger your fear, and will teach you useful techniques that will help you respond to your fear in a way that won’t make you sound (and feel) like a clingy or controlling you-know-what. I sure wish I had read this book when I was in my 20s!

Girl, of course you aren’t crazy. But, when the fear of abandonment kicks in, it sure can feel like you are! Do yourself a favor and grab a copy of Love Me, Don’t Leave Me. Your fears don’t have to continue to sabotage your relationships. Love can win.

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