By Sneha Barua
Do you fear any form of commitment as if it’s a big scary monster and run away as soon as you can? Do you abnegate from making promises to people? Do you have a trail of short, casual flings behind you but nothing long-term?
If your answer to my above questions is a loud “yes” then you, my friend, belong to the LEGEND-wait for it-DARY class of people with commitment phobia.
I am sure many of you think that commitment phobia is just an excuse for selfish, mean people to steer clear of getting into something serious. But, alas, it is much deeper than that!
What is Commitment Phobia?
Is it simply a casual fear of serious romantic relationships? Or are commitment phobic people merely incapable of love?
No, no and NO
Commitment phobia is an actual fear of committing to somebody for a long time which makes the person so anxious and uncomfortable that they run for their lives. Although it is non-diagnosable it has always existed as long as relationships have.
Moreover, I feel that commitment phobia has become a serious issue with the current generation with numerous online dating apps available making it possible for a person to switch partners with one swipe. If you feel the other person is getting a tad too attached, just swipe right!
And no, it is not just about romantic relationships
Commitment phobia also includes an inability to make general promises which you would otherwise have made without thinking twice.
Are you up for a party this Saturday? Umm, I might show up. I’m not too sure. Are you going to be there for my convocation ceremony like you promised? Uhh, probably but I can’t commit. Are you my girlfriend now? Uh, yeah sure (RED ALERT – RUN!) This what commitment phobia looks like!
Signs to Identify a Commitment Phobic Person
Commitment phobia is harmful in two ways – First, when commitment phobes pretend to be open for commitment, misleading their partners into believing that there is hope for something long term when actually there isn’t, breaking their partners’ hearts in a million pieces. *Ouch*
And second, when they WANT to commit to a person they love but are unable to see beyond their fear and anxiety.
In these two cases, it is important to smell commitment phobia in a person before shit gets serious.
So, here are a few signs you can look out for in a person to know whether they are commitment phobic or not:
#1. Past speaks a lot:
If a person has a history of casual flings and non-committal relationships with an expiry date of not more than 6 months, it is most likely that he or she is suffering from commitment phobia.
#2. Labels freak them out:
Commitment phobic persons are more than happy to date someone and be their seductive best, but as soon as their partners want to have “the talk”, they almost pee their pants. That’s right. They cringe inwardly when they have to clarify if the person they are dating is their boyfriend/girlfriend.
#3. Tend to use lots of modifiers while speaking:
One interesting trait of commitment phobic persons is that they have a habit of using a lot of modifiers when they speak. “Probably”, “might”, “might not”, “maybe” are their go – to words.
#4. Family and friends are off limits:
Meeting their partner’s parents and close aides is a no-go for them. They would rather kill themselves than have a chit-chat over tea with their prospective in-laws (just saying). Meeting parents and friends make the relationship a little bit more permanent which fuel their fears.
Why am I commitment phobic?
Many psychologists believe that commitment phobia mostly stems from a person’s past experiences. Often a person’s relationship with his parents and their broken marriage instills a fear of heartbreak inside that person which compels him to keep away from anything serious. It can also be because of a bad relationship in the past which makes him give up on love altogether.
No matter what the reason, it boils down to attachment bonds. Every person craves for a secure bond and if that bond is disrupted in early life it creates issues for future relationships.
So folks, before judging a commitment phobic person, remember, it is all psychological and nothing personal!
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