Although it seems odd, the love addict and the love avoidant often come together in a relationship that, to each individual, is irresistible, yet destructive and unhealthy. Maybe you weren’t even aware that such a thing as a love avoidant exists. After all, if someone wants to avoid love, wouldn’t he avoid relationships? The truth is that love avoidants see relationships as a duty and a necessity, even while avoiding intimacy at all costs. Is your partner a love avoidant?
What Is a Love Avoidant?
Someone who is love avoidant puts up walls in his relationship. He avoids intimacy and finds relationships and love emotionally draining. He engages in relationships and love out of duty rather than desire. He is often distant, but that distancing tends to make the partner in the relationship, often a love addict, only more ardent in her affections. Love avoidants commonly have an addiction. This could be a substance use disorder or some type of behavioral addiction, but it serves as something the avoidant focuses on to take attention away from being intimate in a relationship.
Signs You Love a Love Avoidant
For an avoidant, love addicts often become the partners in their dysfunctional relationships. If you have identified as a love addict, or you are worried you might be one, you might also wonder if your partner is love avoidant. Here are some common signs of a love avoidant in a romantic relationship:
- He evades emotional intimacy. If your partner is love avoidant, he will resist emotional connections and closeness. He won’t want to talk about anything too personal or related to emotions. To a love avoidant, intimacy feels suffocating.
- He is narcissistic. Love avoidants are often narcissistic, self-important and self-involved. By being focused on himself, he is able to avoid becoming closer to his partner.
- He changes drastically in a relationship. Love avoidants tend to do a 180-degree change during the course of a relationship. They seem normal initially, but then become distant and evasive later as the fear of closeness and intimacy grows with the relationship.
- He refuses any couples counseling or other therapy. If someone is love avoidant, he will be in denial about it. He won’t see anything wrong with his behaviors and will not be open to professional help.
- He has an addiction. Addictions in love avoidants are common and sometimes subtle. For instance, he may be a workaholic, using work as an excuse to be distant from his partner.
Love Addict + Love Avoidant = Disaster
For the love addict, love avoidant partners can seem desirable. The love addict wants to nurture, care for and ultimately change the love avoidant. The avoidant will distance himself from the love addict as her attentions become more intense. His avoidance only makes her more aggressive. It becomes an unhealthy cycle. For a love avoidant, living with a love addict is difficult, yet it strikes a certain balance that allows him to practice his distancing behaviors and to justify them. If you think you may be in a relationship like this, it’s time for a serious talk. If he isn’t willing to change, you may need to reconsider the partnership and also consider getting professional counseling to deal with your own issues of love addiction.