Affective dependence is characterized by compulsive obsessiveness and impulsiveness in relating to the other person. There is a clear tendency to put the other first so their wants and needs matter much more than themselves.
There is a cycle, a kind of emotional circuit of dependence:
The first phase of this cycle is the so-called phase of attraction, in which the emotional dependent, whether man or woman, is attracted by seduction and therefore by the apparent power that someone who is very busy in things, strong, capable of managing their own life, while the emotional dependent feels unable to go it alone and therefore needs someone to make him feel strong and important.
The second phase of the cycle, is called the “phase of the Savior’s fantasy”, basically a sort of infantile fantasy of the hero who saves the dependent affective is reactivated, feels revitalized by the attention and proximity of the partner, as under the effect of drugs, the partner is idealized and his real characteristics are not clearly seen.
In the third stage, we have relief, the emotional dependent, feels filled, feels important and no longer experiences the feeling of emptiness, hence loneliness and feels valued. This is the so-called phase of the godless.
At this point, the fourth phase starts, the one in which there is an increase in the need of the dependent, together with the denial of the partner. In practice, the dependent begins to perceive a growing need for attention and therefore presence. The partner is perceived as essential and begins to escape, becoming less and less present in the relationship. But the emotional dependent, does not want to see these moles with evidence, continually justifying in part and thinking for example that he/she is very busy at work, that he/she has the right to spend some time with friends, etc …
Thus we come to the fifth phase, that of collapse, of negation. Clearly the emotional dependent, analyzes the distancing behaviors and the distance that the partner maintains is something concrete, therefore he starts looking at reality and realizes that he is not central to his partner, consequently the emotional dependent always tries to control more his partner, in an escalation of disputes. At this point, the emotional addict lives an experience of abandonment, he feels that the partner is leaving him and the ancient wounds light up. After parental abandonment (hence the obsessive control behaviors, aimed at the renegotiation of the relationship) the emotional dependent begins to tell friends about being abandoned, seeking the help of others to partially save his relationship. In short, he does everything to bring the behavior of his partner under control but, he does so in abusive ways that are dysfunctional and self-destructive.
We thus arrive at the sixth phase, that of the withdrawal. The emotional dependent finally realizes that he has been left for someone or something that is more important than him. At this stage, the ancient emotions of emptiness and abandonment, fear, jealousy are reactivated, and at this point in the cycle, the emotional dependent experiences an emotional overload that he cannot manage, the technical name of this situation is “dysregulation. ” Murderous or suicidal ideas may appear, depression, anxiety, panic and above all obsessive and derivative ideas may appear.
At this point, how do you get out of this and learn to have balanced relationships? Obviously, it is necessary to work on some fundamental points, in the meantime start by treating any dependence beyond the emotional dependence, outside the relationship, such as that of food, shopping, alcohol and gaming. It is necessary to recognize addiction, its effects and then work on the ancient painful feelings, linked to the experiences of abandonment and abuse suffered, in order to develop a healthy ability to recognize and assert one’s real needs.
In any case, it is advisable to avoid engaging in a romantic relationship until a good level of recovery from emotional dependence and its underlying mechanisms has been achieved. We keep in mind that there are also the so-called “Romantics chronic” who do not love others but are in love with the idea of love itself, romantic love, these people feed on illusions and live in perpetual expectation of him or the one who will make their dreams come true. We could define these people as romance dependent, so without them, their life becomes trivial, if there are no great emotions or great dramas. So they are people who are inclined to create small tragedies, they cause family quarrels to experience sensations, they can cause damage both to themselves and to others, they play heroin or hero to feel important and powerful. Some of these women find the unripe man arousing, new to them, unpredictable, romantic, the immature man is a charming man. The lunatic would be mysterious and then he could say that the choleric man needs their understanding. Another typical phrase is that: “unhappy man needs our comfort,” the inadequate man needs our encouragement and the cold man needs our warmth.
People of this kind, have grown up in families where was normally not paid attention to their needs, often there was a subtle violence or hostility between the parents. These People up to the time they were kids, have learned to take refuge in fantasy, or even create special situations but at the base of everything, abandonment is always a trauma that causes suffering. In these relationships, suffering appears oversized, excessive, despair, it is total and takes on the character of a profound, inexplicable despair, without alternatives, without exits. Love is offered with the hope that the other can protect us from fear and instead, fears are acquired with the hope of being reciprocated with ours.
How to get out of this mechanism? Learning to recognize one’s own merits, therefore knowing and valuing oneself. This is what I managed to do on myself, after years of suffering, I managed to love myself moderately but sincerely.