Have you ever loved anyone that shuts down emotionally?
Loving someone who shuts down, stonewalls you or will not communicate, causes a difficult situation, particularly if you can tell by their lack of engagement that something is going on deep below the surface.
Alternatively, if you have shut down emotionally yourself, you might review some of the following reasons why people close themselves off.
I have in the past closed myself off, to prevent anyone from hurting me. The problem was It prevented anyone from loving me also. Because of my child emotional negative I found it easier to feel nothing rather that everything. It was a hard path, but it was the path I chose for myself for many years.
Here are some reasons why. If you know someone like this or you are like this. See if this rings true for you.
Fear Of Rejection
If you or someone you love has experienced trauma, voicing needs or feeling is a significant risk. Often people managing life after trauma feel vulnerable and expressing their feeling opens them up emotionally to additional pain or rejection.
Sharing feelings in the wake of trauma’s poses communication challenges since people processing complex emotions feel fear of opening the floodgates.
If you have ever experienced trauma, lost someone through death or divorce, you know what I’m talking about your feelings (or admit you have them) can trigger tears, anger, or other expressions that put others off.
After all, when someone has a strong emotional reaction, you might fear saying the wrong thing, or anything at all that will set them off.
Avoidant Attachment Adaptation
People with Attachment injury that lean toward Avoidant reflect their childhood trauma of, “You’re on your own.”
When we learn at an early age that our needs will not be met, or on,y sometimes be met (Ambivalent/Anxious), responding with shutdown is not just habitual, but also safe. If we become lost in the woods, we will go back to what we know as a default, though it may result in perpetual patterns that have never truly worked for us.
They Feel Guilty Or Judged
Both people with Ambivalent and Avoidance Attachment have difficulties with admitting they have needs or expressing them because they might not be met. Internally, this can manifest as a fear of judgement or further abuse, and even express itself in the guilt of having needs at all.
For Ambivalent,y attached people, they might tell you their feelings and then sabotage your res when it is not enough or “just right.”
What To Do When Someone You Love Shuts ￼Down
It’s important to remember that helping loved ones, friends, express themselves effectively takes time – abs a come knowledge about how early attachment wounds impact dairy lives.
Here’s a few tips:
- Be present and remember that their Avoidance likely has little to do with you.
- Provide a safe place and remind them that you are available.
- Keep your promises (they have had enough promises broken. It will on,y cause them to believe your like the others). Be available.
- Put your judgement in the backseat.
- Actively listen.
- Provide abundant reassurance.
There is no universal recipes. seek advice and counsel from someone with Attachment experience to help.
My husband stayed with me for many years, I am sure it was very difficult at times. It ended in a iron strong marriage and we are inseparable now.