Man with an unhealthy emotional attachment arguing with his girlfriend

Understanding Unhealthy Emotional Attachment: A Few Signs to Look For

Relationships can be a wonderful gift full of love, trust, and the possibility of spending a life with another person. But sometimes relationships can become difficult to maintain, especially if a partner has become attached in an unhealthy way.

What is An Unhealthy Emotional Attachment?

An unhealthy emotional attachment begins when one partner cannot cope emotionally without the support of the other partner. They may even feel as if they can’t make any decisions without the other partner present.

A partner who is attached in an unhealthy manner to another partner often completely relies on the other person to define his or her worth. And there are several signs of this type of attachment.

A few key indicators of an unhealthy emotional attachment are:

  • Experiencing jealousy or distrust
  • Having a strong need for the partner’s presence
  • Excessive anger and frustration directed at the other partner
  • Expecting the partner to meet all emotional needs
  • Finding no balance in a relationship

Factors That Cause an Unhealthy Emotional Attachment

While several factors can contribute to the development of an unhealthy emotional attachment, there are a few key factors that are typically found within unhealthy relationships. And this often begins by modeling behavior learned at a young age.

A few primary factors of unhealthy emotional attachments are:

  • Modeling learned behavior (from childhood or previous relationships)
  • Poor emotional regulation
  • Poor emotional boundaries

Being aware of emotional boundaries is key to developing healthy connections. And correcting an unhealthy connection pattern begins by recognizing there is a need for change.

The Lukin Center for Psychotherapy offers therapy for individuals who may be experiencing unhealthy emotional attachments within their personal relationships. And this may include couples therapy or individual sessions to help you cope and develop healthier, more positive connections.

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