People that have strong dismissive avoidant tendencies often learned long ago that many of their needs would not be tended to.
They had to learn ways to play with themselves and regulate their own feelings.
Deep down, they want close connection just like you do, but they feel incredibly invaded upon and exposed when you get too close.
They rarely had anyone engage them, or perhaps they were engaged, but in ways that were (too) invasive, so they had to eventually learn to shut down.
If your partner tends to shut down quickly during fights or when feelings become intense, this might be why.
They also have a hard time going from “solo time” to “connection time.”
They spend a lot of time energy regulating themselves, and when someone tries to “interfere” with wanting connection, that can feel highly threatening.
In order for your partner to feel safer to lean into connection with you, they will need you to understand this internal struggle that they experience.
After spending time apart, try giving them some alone time to transition before requesting connection.
Ask for a hug and kiss and then let them unwind a bit so they can be more present for you.
Spend time in activities where the focus isn’t just on you two.
For example, going to a concert, taking a fun class together, are all things that can help bring their guard down.
It can help them get in touch with their feelings of connection towards you.
Your partner is likely desperately wanting to connect with you deep down, but they often have to sit through some awful thoughts and feelings first in order to get there.
Those thoughts and feelings usually have (nothing) to do with you, but they are triggered by you.
Closeness with you often triggers painful memories of being left alone or invaded upon.
There is something magical that happens when we begin to understand our partner.
It doesn’t mean we won’t get hurt by disconnecting behaviors.
But we can learn to ask for connection in ways that also honors our partner’s pain.
We can learn to tolerate doing things that might feel counterintuitive .. so that both partner’s can win.
#coachingwithsilvy - 2 days ago