In this post, you’re going to find out what happens when you stop chasing an avoidant.
Who Is The Avoidant?
The term “avoidant” typically refers to individuals who exhibit characteristics of avoidant attachment in their interpersonal relationships.
Avoidant individuals often display a reluctance to engage in emotional intimacy, a tendency to maintain emotional distance, and an inclination to prioritize independence and self-sufficiency in their interactions with others.
This attachment style is commonly recognized in the context of attachment theory, which elucidates how early experiences with caregivers can shape an individual’s approach to close relationships throughout their lifespan.
Avoidant individuals may have developed this attachment style as a result of inconsistent or emotionally unavailable caregiving during their formative years, leading them to internalize a belief that relying on others for emotional support may not meet their needs or could lead to emotional pain.
Consequently, they may have learned to downplay the significance of emotional closeness and to prioritize self-reliance as a means of protecting themselves from potential hurt or disappointment.
In adult romantic relationships, avoidant individuals may struggle to fully engage in closeness and intimacy, often preferring to maintain a degree of emotional distance or independence.
They may find it challenging to express vulnerable emotions, tend to be uncomfortable with excessive displays of affection, and may prioritize personal space and autonomy.
While they may desire connection, their fear of being engulfed by intimacy or losing their sense of independence can lead them to create emotional barriers or keep an emotional “safe distance” from their partners.
It’s crucial to understand that an avoidant attachment style is not a definitive label but rather a pattern of relating that can be influenced by various factors, including past experiences, individual personality traits, and situational contexts.
What Happens When You Stop Chasing An Avoidant?
When you stop chasing an avoidant individual, several psychological and interpersonal dynamics come into play, which can have significant effects on both parties involved. Here’s an in-depth exploration of what may happen when you stop pursuing an avoidant individual:
1. Relief from Emotional Exhaustion:
When you cease chasing an avoidant individual, you may experience a sense of relief from the emotional exhaustion that often accompanies pursuing someone who is emotionally distant or hesitant to engage in close relationships.
Constantly seeking validation, attention, or intimacy from an avoidant person can take a toll on your emotional well-being, leading to feelings of frustration, rejection, and inadequacy.
2. Shift in Power Dynamics:
Stopping the pursuit can lead to a shift in power dynamics within the relationship.
Previously, the avoidant individual might have held more control over the level of closeness and emotional engagement.
By withdrawing your pursuit, you reclaim a sense of agency and autonomy, which can influence how the avoidant individual perceives and responds to you.
3. Potential Awakening of Anxious-Avoidant Dynamics:
In some cases, an anxious-avoidant attachment dynamic may be at play between you and the avoidant individual.
The anxious individual typically seeks closeness and reassurance, while the avoidant individual tends to resist intimacy and emotional closeness.
When the pursuit stops, the avoidant individual may initially experience a sense of relief from pressure but could also feel a subtle discomfort arising from the disruption of their established dynamics.
4. Heightened Ambivalence in the Avoidant Individual:
Ceasing your pursuit can bring forth a heightened sense of ambivalence in the avoidant individual.
On one hand, they may experience a newfound sense of freedom and independence.
On the other hand, the absence of pursuit may trigger underlying fears of vulnerability, leading to feelings of loneliness or abandonment that are characteristic of avoidant attachment patterns.
5. Potential for Re-Evaluation:
The act of stepping back from the pursuit can create an opportunity for both you and the avoidant individual to re-evaluate the dynamics of your relationship.
By creating space, you allow for introspection and potential shifts in perspective.
The avoidant individual may begin to consider the impact of their distancing behaviors, while you may gain clarity regarding your own needs and boundaries.
6. Emotional Impact on the Pursuer:
As the pursuer, you may undergo a process of self-reflection and emotional recalibration when you stop chasing the avoidant individual.
This may involve recognizing and addressing any underlying anxieties or insecurities that contributed to the pursuit.
Embracing self-care, self-compassion, and exploring your own attachment style can be pivotal in this phase.
7. Potential for Reconnection or Further Distance:
The cessation of pursuit can lead to divergent outcomes.
It may pave the way for the potential reconnection and renegotiation of the relationship dynamics based on newfound insights.
Alternatively, it could solidify the existing distance, leading to a gradual fading of the connection as both parties pursue separate paths.
8. Emotional Processing and Healing:
For the pursuer, stopping the chase offers an opportunity for emotional processing and healing.
It allows you to redirect your focus towards self-growth, personal fulfillment, and nurturing other meaningful connections in your life.
Engaging in activities that promote self-discovery and emotional resilience can aid in this healing process.
Disengaging from pursuing an avoidant individual can initiate a complex interplay of emotional, relational, and psychological processes.
It presents opportunities for both parties to explore their individual needs, reassess relationship dynamics, and embark on paths of personal growth and self-discovery.
Hadiah is a counselor who is passionate about supporting individuals on their journey towards mental well-being. Hadiah not only writes insightful articles on various mental health topics but also creates engaging and practical mental health worksheets.
As a BetterHelp affiliate, we may receive a commission from BetterHelp, at zero cost to you, if you click through the link and finalize a purchase.