Some of the reasons couples stay together or break up may surprise you. While it’s easy to assume that most people stay in relationships because it feels good and there are plenty of rewards such as having a close connection, along with physical and emotional intimacy, new research shows that depending on your attachment style, you may stay or leave for different reasons.
Stephanie Spielmann, of the University of Toronto’s department of psychology was one of the first researchers to look at the effects of social threats and rewards in relation to love commitment. They studied three separate groups of couples totally nearly 2000 people of both genders from the United States and Canada. And what her team found is that attachment style has a lot to do with why people stay.
The big take away is that people who tend to have an avoidant attachment style (those who shy away from emotional closeness) perceive that their relationship gives them few rewards. On the other hand, those with higher levels of attachment anxiety (those who worry about love and crave intimacy) perceive that the loss of their relationship will be a terrifying thing. Also, when people think their relationship is rewarding, they tend to have higher levels of commitment, invest more in their love life, and report that their relationship is satisfying. The results were the same for both genders.
What does all this mean to us? Simply put, people who have anxiety about love, tend to stay in an unsatisfying relationship because they fear being single. They actually settle for less, because they fear losing their relationships is worse than staying in a bad place. And people who avoid emotional closeness tend to have higher commitment problems. Not surprisingly, people who have a secure attachment style, those with high self esteem who can give and receive care comfortably and feel that closeness is rewarding, tend to have higher commitment levels and ride out the bumps of relationship ruptures well.
If you suspect you are in an unhealthy relationship, it’s important to understand your attachment style and to examine your fears about being single. Feelings of loneliness are painful feelings for both genders but dating a hurtful person can have longterm effects on self-esteem. Knowing your real value on the mating market is key to maintaining confidence in your current relationship.
Watch my video:
WHY PEOPLE DATE OUT OF THEIR LEAGUE