Attachment is the deep connection established between a child and a caregiver that has a profound impact upon the child’s development and ability to express emotions and develop relationships. Adults with unresolved childhood attachment issues tend to have difficulty forming secure adult relationships, which explains why there is a strong correlation between insecure adult attachment and break-ups and divorces.
Children who were abused, abandoned, or had emotionally distant parents may grow up to have problems developing healthy relationships. Unless the cycle is broken, attachment problems will be handed down from one generation to the next. This pattern continues because parents who are themselves insecurely attached adults lack the ability to provide to their children the attachment cues required for healthy emotional development. And without these cues, the children will be predisposed to a lifetime of relationship difficulties.
Adult attachment disorder is a term used to describe the emotional dysfunction of a person who is unable to form intimate, caring, and reciprocal bonds with others. A person with an attachment disorder develops behavioral patterns that continually block all possibilities of a loving relationship. These behaviors are forced out of self-protection in order to prevent intimacy. However, an attachment disorder can also present in the completely opposite manner, whereby the insecurely attached person has an overwhelming desire for a relationship and uses his or her loved ones as a way of countering insecurity. As a result of their constant demand for closeness, these individuals typically end up losing their partners.
If you or a loved one is suffering from attachment disorder, please know that it is possible to repair attachment challenges. The treatment of attachment disorder in adults involves therapy. When dealing with attachment issues, I often use role playing to help my clients work through traumatic events from the past. It is very important to bring awareness to the places of trauma, so they no longer remain stuck in the unconscious. Partners are welcome to attend counseling sessions. Contact me today to schedule an appointment in my Longmont or Boulder, CO, office.