(Svenska) Hur otrygg anknytning påverkar dina vuxna relationer

Hur otrygg anknytning påverkar dina vuxna relationer

Otrygg anknytning leder ofta till olika ångesttillstånd eller depressioner senare i livet. Den påverkar även ofta vilken typ av kärleksrelation du väljer som vuxen. Om du har en undvikande anknytning är det vanligt att du lämnar din partner efter att ha varit i relationen ett tag. Du kanske är väldigt förälskad i början men efter ett tag börjar du tvivla på att din partner är rätt för dig. Du kanske inte känner dig lika attraherad längre och du börjar se brister som du inte såg i början men som du nu inte kan sluta tänka på. Om du känner igen dig i detta, försök analysera om du pratar om dina känslor och om du tillåter dig att vara sårbar inför din partner. Det är  viktigt att du tillåter dig att vara sårbar för att kunna få en känslomässigt länk till din partner. Analysera även om du själv är bra på på att identifiera vad du känner, annars behöver du även jobba på det.
Om du tenderar att vara klängig i en relation och fokuserar all energi och tid på din partner, har du antagligen också otrygg anknytning. Det här beteendet är vanligt om du har ambivalent anknytning. Om du känner igen dig själv i detta, försök tvinga dig själv till att ägna dig åt sådant du i vanliga fall brukar ägna dig åt; tex. träffa vänner, träna, etc. Försök motstå lusten att avboka saker med andra för att din partner vill träffas i sista stund, försök även motstå att inte boka något alls i hopp om att din partner kanske eventuellt får lust att hitta på något med dig. Jag är, genom min erfarenhet av arbete med klienter helt övertygad om att det bästa sättet att få en partner intresserad är att visa att du har god självkänsla. Min uppfattning är att god självkänsla är det mest attraktionsframkallande som finns. Med andra ord ska du visa din partner att du gärna vill träffas men att du även har annat i ditt liv och att du inte är tillgänglig dygnet runt. Jag vill poängtera att det här inte handlar om att du ska spela oåtkomlig utan om att du tar hand om dina behov och inte går med på att bli överkörd. Kom ihåg att ju mer du kör över dina behov, desto större är sannolikheten att dina rädslor besannas, dvs att du blir övergiven.
Om du har desorganiserad anknytning är det sannolikt att du inkonsekvent använder dig av alla nämnda destruktiva strategier. Om du känner igen dig i detta bör du gå i terapi och tillsammans med terapeuten gå igenom dina relationer och hur du kör över dina behov för att sedan börja ändra på det. Du kanske inte har någon överblick av hur du kör över dina behov eller att du kör över dem, du kanske bara är medveten om att du lever i ett moln av ångest. Du kan lära dig att bete dig bra mot dig själv genom att titta på specifika situationer och relationer i ditt liv. Nästa steg är att välja några situationer där du vill börja öva dig på att bete dig bra mot dig själv och därpå göra det trots att du inte känner för det. Du kan i början inte vänta dig att det ska kännas rätt, du måste börja bete dig bra mot dig själv länge för att det sedan ska börja känna rätt. Om din partner beter sig illa, börja med att säga att hans/hennes beteende är oacceptabelt och du inte kommer att tolerera det längre. Om detta inte hjälper, försök lämna relationen. Jag vet att det är jättesvårt men det är nödvändigt! Om det känns omöjligt, försök först börja jobba på att utöka antal beteenden under dagen då du gör saker som får dig att må bra långsiktigt, t.ex. träna, träffa vänner etc. När du har fler trådar i ditt liv att ägna dig åt än din partner, försök då ställa krav igen, om det inte hjälper, försök lämna honom/henne. När du går igenom dina tidigare val av partner och är mer medveten om vad som attraherar dig hos en partner kommer du att bli bättre på att i ett tidigt stadium känna igen vilka typer du ska undvika att ens gå på date med. Tänk på att inte ge efter för impulsen att gå på date med någon som är spännande bara för att du just då känner kontroll över dina känslor. Går du ut på för djupt vatten kan du plötsligt känna att du har tappat kontrollen och då är du inne i karusellen igen, med ångest som konsekvens. Gör du det i alla fall är det bra att vara medveten om varför du har ångest och att du ska försöka göra det bästa av situationen för dina behov. Försök att inte börja kritisera dig själv utan fokusera i stället energin på hur du kan hantera situationen utifrån förutsättningarna och hur du kan undvika att göra om samma misstag nästa gång.

Monica Emanell, leg. Psykolog, leg. Psykoterapeut

www.kbtemanell.seHow insecure attachment affects your adult relationships

Insecure attchment often leads to problems with anxiety and depression later n Life. It often affects what type of relationship you select as an adult. If you have avoidant attachment, it is common that you leave your partner after a while. You might be very much in love in the beginning bur you start beng hesitant about the relationship after a while. May be you are not so in love as you were in the beginning and you start seeing flaws in your partner that you did not see in the beginning and now you cannot stop thinking about them. If you recognize yourself in this, try to analyze if you talk about your feelings and if you let yourself be vulnerable when you are with your partner. It is important that you let yourself be vulnerable since it will serve as emotional glue to you partner. You also need to exercize on identifying your own feelings and on expressing them.

If you on the other hand tend to get clingy in relationships, you also probably have insecure attachment but then it is ambivalent attachment. f you recognize yourself in this, try to focus on something else that only your relationships. Try to focus on exercizing, meeting friends or something else that you usually like to do when you do not have a relationship. Try to work on your self-esteem, I think that good self-esteem is what most attracts other people to you so if you try to hold on to your beliefs and if you model self-respect, you maximize the possibility that your partner wants to be with you. It is not about playing unavailable, it is about having self-respect and that you are care for yourself.

If you have disorganized attachment you are likely to have all the strategies above. They are inconsistent and you unconschiously you cannot make up your mind how to behave, you feel confused. You probalbly have no Control over what you feel, even less how to express your feelings and you probably are not aware of all the times you run over your needs or let someone else run over them.

In therapy you need to learn to recognize what you feel and then try to analyze in what situations you do not feel well and then analyze why. You also need to find out needs you have and then try to take care of them.

If you have a pattern of getting attracted to people that are not good for you, you need to find out why. First you need to see the smilarity between your childhood attachment pattern and your relationships in the present. If you suffer emotional abuse from your partner you first need to see the pattern and then try to plan how you want to set limits so that your partner cannot run over you anymore. If that does not work and you cannot leave your partner, you need to start focusing on things outside the relationship that make you feel good or that made you feel good Before you lost your self-esteem and knowledge of what you like and do not like.

You will notice after some time that you will feel stronger from getting energy outside the relationship and that might help you to finally leave the relationship if your partner refuses to treat you well.

Monica Emanell, Licensed Psychologist, Licensed Psychotherapist

www.kbtemanell.se

What makes you feel empathy towards others?

What makes you feel empathy towards others

In the frontal part of the brain (prefrontal cortex) and in some other areas in the brain, there are specific neurons, called mirror neurons and they enhance your capacity to imitate others and to learn social skills. (Read more about this in Rewire your brain by John Arden).

Neuroscientists think that that mirror neurons play an imprtant role in your capacity to feel empathy for another person.

For example, mirror neurons make you want to yawn when you see someone else yawning, they help you read another person´s intentions, get a feeling for what the other person is feeling and get empathy for him/her. Empathy is associated with the right somatosensory cortex so if this part is damaged you get a loss of empathy. Since mirror neurons also may be part of your ability to feel emapthy for someone else, they make you respond to when someone is sad.

Scientists have found that there also exist super mirror neurons that are thought to control the activity of the classic mirror neurons. Super mirror neurons help you for example to stop your impulses to imitate another person´s action.They also help you to form a sense of yourself and another person from a sense of “us”. Mirro neurons also help you to through “feeling” grasp what someone is thinking. So mirror neurons help you understand and predict the behavior of others. Understanding and predicting the behaviors of others is called “theory of mind”.

To be continued…

Cognitive Behavior Psychologist Monica Emanell

www.kbtemanell.se

How insecure attachment affects your adult relationships

How insecure attachment affects your adult relationships

Insecure attchment often leads to anxiety and mood disorders later in life. It also often affects the kind of partner you will choose. If you have an avoidant attachment it is common that you leave ýour partner after you have been in the relationship for a while. May be you feel very much in love in the beginning bur after a while you start doubting that this partner is the right one for you. May be you don´t feel as attracted anymore and you start seeing psysical flaws, you start obsessing around a flaw you see in your partner and you can´t let go of that. If you recognize this, try to analyze if you talk about your feelings and if you let yourself be vulnerable sometimes. Letting yourself be vulnerable is important in order to form an emotional link to someone. Also analyze if you are aware of your own emotions, otherwise you have to work on that.

If you tend to be clingy in a relationship and focus all your energy and time on your partner you probably also have an insecure attachment. This is common if you have an ambivalent attachment. If you recognize yourself in this, you should force yourself to do things you usually like; seeing friends, working out etc. Even if you feel like canceling everything if your partner want to see you, try not to. I am definitely certain from working with this all the time, that the best strategy to get someone interested and stay interested is showing self esteem, that is showing how you want to be treated by treating yourself good. So, if you feel like running over your needs, try not to (of course mostly for your own good), but also because it will be attractive to your partner. I am not saying that should play a game where you can´t be caught, I am saying that you should be observant when you get impulses to walk over your own needs in order to please your partner. May be you will think that you are only trying to be easy to be with and that this will make your partner want to be with you but it´s the opposite. The more you run over your own needs the bigger the risk is that your fears come true, that is that you get abandoned.

If you have a disorganized attachment you probably use all of the destructive strategies mentioned without any structure. If this is the case you have to go through your relationships and together with a therapist go through how you run over your needs and slowly start changing that. May be you have no idea what you are doing, you just feel everything is disorganized in a cloud of anxiety. You have to learn how to behave well towards yourself by looking at specific situations in your life. The next step is to try to behave in a nice way towards yourself even if you don´t feel like it, just do it. And try to stop mean behaviors from others, by telling them that you won´t accept it and if that doesn´t help, leave the relationship (which is very hard and requires planning and training in treating yourself well). When you become good at noticing quickly what partners are not good for you it´s good not to go out o a date with them “only because you feel strong”. Suddenly you will feel in love and caught and then the whole circus starts again, so the best is, don´t go to near partners that you know are not good for you.

Cognitive Behavior Psychologist Monica Emanell

www.kbtemanell.se

Your attachment´s effect on the brain and how to break free and become more satisfied

How did the attachment you had in your childhood affects your brain

If you have a nurturing environment it is likely that the gene that produces the cortisol receptor in the hippocampus is twice as actice as it is if you don´t. This will make you more resistant to stress. Read more about this in Rewire your brain by John Arden).

In other words, if you were insecurely attached your brain will be wired so that you feel a sense of insecurity about yourself. This also often affects your relationships in a negative way.

The positive news is that you can train your brain and in other words, rewire it so that you can havve a secure sense of yourself and get better relationships. This requires training so you do what is good for you in the long run over and over again. I often tell my patients that when you go to the gym you don´t expect to get a strong body after a week and this is the same thing, you can´t expect to feel good about yourself after a week.

An example:

You have a goal to talk more with people that you don´t know that well and you have an opportunity to start training tonight since you are going to a party that you first wanted to cancel since you felt to nervous meeting new people.

– Make a plan and write down different topics you can talk about with a new person.

– Go through both potential questions you can ask and also what you can say about yourself.

– You can also visualize yourself talking to a person you don´t know.v(this will stimulate the same neurons that you use when you are in a social situation).

– Try not to write down a whole thesis, you psyche has to be able to get a grip of what is expected and then it can´t be too much. There is a big risk that you will give up if you get a sense of that it is too much.

– If you find the above impossible, try to think that you will only be at the party for an hour, then you can go home.

– If you are afraid of talking to someone without being able to escape, have a plan ready that you will say you have to go to the restroom.

– When you talk different people, try to observe if you perceive them in different ways. May be you will think that if the other person is quiet, it is is because you are boring. Try to analyze what you think of the other person, may be you think he/she is boring.

Cognitive Behavior Psychologist Monica Emanell

www.kbtemanell.se

Do you have disorganized attachment?

Do you have disorganized attachment?

The disorganized attachment is an attachment type you can get if you have had a very traumatized childhood. Children with this attachment type froze when they saw theit mother or they started to rock. These children don´t have a stable coping strategy. The mothers of children with disorganized attachmnet tend to be impulsive, abusive and depressed.

Cognitive Behavior Psychologist Monica Emanell

www.kbtemanell.se

Do you have ambivalent attachment?

Do you have ambivalent attachment?

The study showed that children who had ambivalent attachment reacted in an ambivalent way towards the mother. They showed distress when she left, then related to the stranger, and then they showed anger and coldness towards the mother when she returned. Mothers of children with ambivalent attachment behave in a inconsistent way, They are sometimes warm and caring and sometimes indifferent.

Cognitive Behavior Psychologist Monica Emanell

www.kbtemanell.se

Do you have avoidant attachment?

Ainsworth identified that some children in the experiment as having avoidant attachment. They reacted in a indifferent way when the mother left the room and when she returned. They seemed to be uninterested but the study showed that the pulse was high in these children. So, in other words they got stressed but they didn´t show it. The behavior is related to the fact that mothers´ of children with avoidant attachment tend to be unresponsive when the child needs support so they discourage crying and promote separation.

If you have avoidant attachment, there is a big probability that you as an adult feel uncomfortable when you are getting close in a relationship. You probably won´t feel like sharing your feelings with your partner (if you are aware of them yourself). You are more likely to be interested in someone from the beginning but then after a while you start to see flaws in your partner. The flaws you see can be whatever, that your partner has a boring voice, an irritating body language, looks insecure etc. You start withdrawing from your partner more and more and finally you leave your partner.

Cognitive Behavior Psychologist Monica Emanell

www.kbtemanell.se

Do you have secure attachment?

Do you have a secure attachmnet?

Ainsworth´s experiment showed that if a child has secure attachment it shows distress when the mother leaves the room and it becomes pleased when she returns. The child welcomes the mother´s comfort and continues to explore the room after a while.

Cognitive Behavior Psychologist Monica Emanell

www.kbtemanell.se

What kind of attachment did you have with your parents?

What kind of attachment did you have with your parents?

The attachment theory, developed by Bowlby is the base on which different psychologists have done research to se how a mother´s (usually the primary caretaker)behavior influences a child´s attachment to that her.

Bonding begins at birth before language is developed. Therefore an insecure attchment from birth gives the worst emotional consequences which Jeffrey Young explains in his book Reinventing your life. Without the speech, you have even less control over your environment which gives higher levels of anxiety later. During the first two years there is a right hemispheric dominance (the language is in the left half of the brain) and therefore many of the basic attachment patterns are formed in this half of the brain. The amygdala (in the limbic system) interprets the facial expressions of your caregiver, interprets incomning stimuli as good-bad (you can read more about this in “Rewire your brain by John Arden).

A developmental psychologists called Mary Ainsworth is famous for her experiment where she what kind of attachment small children had with their mothers. The experiment was performed in the following way:

Mothers and their babies were invited in a room with toys when a stranger came entered the room. After that the mother left the room for a short while and then she returned and the stranger left. After that the mothe left the room again leaving the baby alone.

Ainsworth identified different kinds of attachment behaviors through this experiment.

The attachment types are secure, avoidant, ambivalent and disorganized.

To be continued…

Cognitive Behavior Psychologist Monica Emanell

www.kbtemanell.se