Truth About Attachment

How Attachment Issues are often the Real Problem

Being in a romantic relationship is not easy. Conflict, jealousy, and betrayal are just a few of the problems that couples may face. When couples encounter problems in their relationships they tend to focus on the specific issue at hand.

This issue-by-issue approach to problem solving makes perfect sense. People can only pay attention to a few things at any given time, so why not focus on the problem in the moment it happens?

While this issue-by-issue approach to problem solving is common, it may not be the most effective way of dealing with issues. Underlying almost every argument, disappointment or difficulty, there is usually a larger, hidden dynamic at play.

Most relational problems are influenced by an individual’s comfort with intimacy and commitment. Tens of thousands of research studies have shown that an individual’s attachment style influences what happens in a romantic relationship.

How a person flirts, fights and falls in love are all influenced by one’s style of attachment. Attachment theory is unquestionably one of the most useful ways of making sense of how partners cope with problems and relate to each other.

Attachment styles influence the basic building blocks of romantic relationships. Attachment styles influence how people control their emotions, empathize with a partner, and express themselves (see Cassidy & Shaver).

Understanding how people form attachments reveals how seemly unrelated problems are connected. Dealing with the underlying issue directly – partners’ comfort with intimacy and commitment – helps couples solve problems more effectively.

Because issues of attachment underlie so many relational problems, we have created a set of resources on the topic.

Truth About Deception – back to our home page.