Today we’re going to do an in-depth dive on why avoidants tend to ignore you.
In this guide you’re going to learn,
- What the avoidant attachment style is
- The paradox that lies at the heart of every avoidant
- The core reasons for why they ignore you
- The best way to handle an avoidant ignoring you
So, if you’re ready to learn about why avoidant people ignore you then you came to the right place.
What Is An Avoidant Attachment Style?
Simply put, someone with an avoidant attachment style has difficulty committing to their partners. It will always seem as if that person is keeping you emotionally distant. You’ll often find that they have this idealized version of a partner that you can’t live up to. They’ve convinced themselves that everyone should be independent in relationships and any form of co-dependence will make them uncomfortable.
Often in our business we find that our clients are dating people with avoidant attachments while their attachments seem to lean towards more anxious style ones.
And that’s the interesting thing.
Individuals with avoidant attachments naturally seem drawn towards individuals with anxious attachments.
Well, the first thing you really need to grasp is that someone with an anxious attachment style completely focuses on other people while the avoidant tends to be completely self focused. In a way this is the perfect scenario for the avoidant. They get to be partnered with someone who focuses on the thing that matters most to them, themselves.
And at first it’s great.
The anxious person gets to do what they do best and “care” for the avoidant and the avoidant gets the “care” that they’ve been feeling they’ve missed their entire lives but there’s a flaw with the way the avoidant thinks.
Above all else the avoidant attachment style values independence and the more the anxious attachment digs in the less independent they begin to feel. What at first seemed like a perfect fit become less perfect.
So, what does the avoidant do?
- They push you away.
- They break up with you.
- They do everything possible to cut you out of their life.
And once again the avoidant person is alone wondering why “things won’t ever work out.”
I like to call this dynamic the self fulfilling prophecy of the avoidant.
And perhaps the most interesting part of this self fulfilling prophecy is a big portion of it relies on this idealized version of a partner that no one can ever live up to.
The Idealized Version Of A Partner You Can’t Live Up To
A paradox lies at the heart of every avoidant.
They have an excessive need to be loved but at the same time too much love scares them away.
The result often leads to them forming this idealized version of a partner that no one can ever live up to. Nowhere have I seen this concept illustrated better than the reality vs. expectations scene in 500 days of summer.
In it you have the protagonist, Tom, whose trying to “win back” Summer, his ex girlfriend. She has invited him to a party and he has this entire fantasy about how the invitation will go. He’ll get there and him and Summer will immediately hit it off. Slowly they’ll build attraction until it boils over and they can’t keep their hands off each other.
The reality is different. Tom gets there and there is no chemistry. He’s alone at the party a lot. Eventually he learns Summer is engaged to someone else and is heartbroken.
The avoidant looks at relationships in the same manner as Tom. They’ll build up these fantasies in their heads and have these unrealistic expectations. We know they do this from studying how they react to breakups.
What’s interesting about the breakup is they go through this nostalgia period. This is often why we’ve found our clients have such a high success rate after their breakups in getting in touch with their exes. We train them to time this nostalgia period and then reach out.
Generally this nostalgia only happens after they feel like there’s no chance they can ever get back together with you. It’s only then that they feel safe enough to romanticize your time together.
Understanding this fact can teach us a lot about how they cope within relationships.
Avoidant People Always Seem To Have One Foot Out The Door
Simply put, it makes them feel safe.
Have you ever been in a relationship where it seems like the other person isn’t all the way invested to the level you are? It’s an awful feeling because to you there are true moments of bliss but 90% of the experience is spent agonizing over if this person loves you to the level you love them.
The avoidant person is truly a master at sending mixed signals and if you really think about it, it does make a lot of sense.
The paradox that lies in their heart is a simple one. They want love but at the same time they don’t want to let anyone too close to give them that love for fear of being hurt.
This is often why you’ll receive these mixed signals and perhaps the craziest part of this phenomenon is the avoidant is typically unaware they’re doing it. It’s embedded into their natural way of being from years of practice.
Of learning what to say or do to keep you close so that you can continue to give them the love they crave but at the same time keep you far enough away so that you can’t hurt them.
What Happens If You Push For A Commitment With An Avoidant?
This is a concept that I really want you to internalize because it’ll help you understand that there are different levels to an avoidant and it relates to their level of commitment to you. As you may have already surmised we have the most experience with breakups. By studying them we’ve learned a lot about how avoidants react and what the “tipping points” are for them to trigger their fight or flight mechanisms.
Look at the following categories.
- You ask for them to be relationship official
- You ask them for clarification on when marriage is going to happen
- You ask them to move in together
- You buy a house together
- You have a child together
- You get engaged
- You get married
These are just a few of the common “tipping points” that can trigger their avoidant side. I’ve tried to order them in the way that an avoidant will look at them from a commitment standpoint.
Committing to you in a relationship isn’t going to be the same as committing to you for marriage.
Now, what’s fascinating is that not all avoidants get triggered at the beginning of this list.
Some can make it all the way up until you move together. Each person is unique in how they handle the tipping points.
But what do all of these “tipping points” have in common?
All of them require some type of commitment. Yet it’s these tipping points that give an avoidant the greatest level of worry. I’ll give you a real example. Lately we’ve been seeing a lot of breakups occur during pregnancy which is just awful.
But it makes sense when you look at it from the avoidants point of view. Sharing a child is something that binds you together with a person forever. Even the thought of it can make them feel smothered in relationships.
Because even if you are just dating and you end up pregnant the expectation of a larger commitment looms and they just aren’t having that.
The Avoidant Is A Master Of “Silent Conflict”
So, this entire article is dedicated to helping you understand why the avoidant “ignores.” What’s interesting is that psychologists have found that mood swings and stonewalling are generally coping strategies employed by someone who doesn’t yet know how to verbalize how they feel.
It’s simply easier for the avoidant to push people away as opposed to staying in the fight and voicing their frustrations.
I kind of look at it like muscle memory.
Someone who is ignoring you and is an avoidant hasn’t been doing this just with you. Chances are they’ve learned this behavior from childhood and has used it to regulate their situation.
So, the first thing you need to do when figuring out why someone is ignoring you is determining if they have an avoidant attachment style.
- Essentially someone with an avoidant attachment style has a fear of intimacy when they feel like their personal freedoms are becoming threatened.
- Another interesting thing about them is that they have this ridiculous notion in their head that they are supposed to feel how they feel during the honeymoon period at all times.
- They’ll always seem like they have one foot in the door and one foot out the door.
- Also beware of commitment tipping points. Essentially these points in time where the avoidant is likely to get scared away.