5 Signs You’re Afraid of Commitment

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Bad romantic experiences or relationships can put you off of dating. They dampen your outlook on the dating process, so it’s not uncommon to be a bit cynical. Some of us recover from a bad relationship, while others don’t. 

Those who do not recover from a previous relationship can be afraid to open up or avoid dating altogether. Unfortunately, many readily assume that people who avoid dating have commitment issues. Many of us use attribute flaws in our relationships or our partner’s reluctance to “connect” to commitment issues. We use the term arbitrarily. We ignore the complex emotions that cause commitment phobias. So, what we colloquially call commitment issues may not be that. 

Sometimes, it takes more than a bad relationship to create a commitment phobia. The reasons differ from person to person, but influences can come from a person’s upbringing or family history.  

There is not a specific reason why someone may have a commitment phobia. Hence, it can be hard to discern between a person who does not want a relationship and a person who is dealing with other issues that affect their commitment level in a relationship. 

Before moving on, Crystal Raypole of Healthline states, and I would like to reiterate that love and commitment are not the same. While they often go hand in hand, it is possible for someone to love you but not be committed to you. It sound’s contradictory, but it is possible. 

So, without further ado, here as some signs you are afraid of commitment. 

  • You avoid dating seriously. 

One sign that you are afraid of commitment is if you don’t date seriously. There is nothing wrong with dating for the sake of dating. However, people with commitment issues immediately cut off a relationship once it moves past the point of being casual. They don’t want to be attached to the responsibility that comes with seriously dating someone they like.  

  • You do not think about the future in a relationship.

Those afraid of commitment do not look ahead in their relationships because they do not plan to stick around. You do not have to sit down and map out your lives together, especially if you have just started dating. That is fine. But, after the first phase, most people are willing to entertain the idea. People with a commitment issue are often reluctant and reticent.  

  • You only see failure. 

This point ties in with the previous one. When you only consider ending the relationship as an option, you are afraid of commitment. If you find that you or your partner often prepares, to the point where it feels expected, for the worst, then it’s a big sign that they are not willing to commit to that relationship. 

  • You question the relationship.

Questioning the relationship is another sign that you may have a commitment phobia. I am not saying that you are not allowed to question your relationship. I am sure that at some point you may question it. But, those who are afraid of commitment often question the security of the relationship. 

Some common questions are:

  • Do they love me?
  • Am I ready for this? 
  • Will this work/ do I want this to work?

A person who is afraid of commitment is not afraid of being in a relationship. They just fear the possibility of failure within the relationship. 

  • You don’t trust your judgment.

Another common sign is that you don’t trust your judgment. Dating coach Pricilla Martinez explains that commitment phobias, sometimes, come from traumatic experiences. This traumatic experience can influence the degree of trust you have in yourself. You may believe that your decisions are flawed or wrong. Hence, you don’t trust that you have made the right choice. 

  • You don’t feel emotionally attached. 

A lack of trust in your judgment can cause you to become emotionally detached from your partner. All relationships are built on trust. But, if you can’t trust yourself, how can you trust your partner. This lack of trust causes you to not become attached. 

Additionally, since you don’t plan on sticking around, you don’t develop any attachments. In the relationship, it can manifest as an unwillingness to be vulnerable and open. 

Relationships can be difficult to navigate, and more so when you have commitment issues. Having commitment issues does not mean you never want to be in love. It just means that it will take you time to unlearn negative self-preserving behaviors and uproot the source of your insecurities. 

If you ever need more help, reach out to a therapist. 

Sources:

Brennan, D. (2020, November 17). Commitment phobia: Signs that you or your partner has it. WebMD. Retrieved November 19, 2021, from https://www.webmd.com/sex-relationships/commitment-phobia-symptoms-signs. 

Gould, W. R. (2021, September 21). How fear of commitment can impact your relationship. Verywell Mind. Retrieved November 19, 2021, from https://www.verywellmind.com/how-fear-of-commitment-can-impact-your-relationship-5199748. 

Lampen, C. (2020, April 20). How tell if you’re afraid of commitment – and what to do about it. Bustle. Retrieved November 19, 2021, from https://www.bustle.com/p/how-tell-if-youre-afraid-of-commitment-what-to-do-about-it-9663305. 

Raypole, C., & Legg, T. J. (2021, September 9). Fear of commitment: 16 signs and tips. Healthline. Retrieved November 19, 2021, from https://www.healthline.com/health/fear-of-commitment#in-yourself. 

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