Commitment Phobia: 4 Things That Drive This Fear

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Commitment Phobia Things That Drive This Fear

You must have encountered many people with commitment phobia. But have you ever thought about what makes them commitment-phobic? 

Recently I was asked why it is that some people never enter into a mature, thoroughly committed relationship?

Although there are many possible reasons for this fear, most of the time it boils down to one of the following.

ONE: Peter Pan Is Alive and Well

This is more common in men than in women. The person simply does not wish to grow up. Being an adult requires that you place your needs (at least much of the time) second to those of others. Particularly those with whom you have a commitment.

Moreover, a committed relationship has obligations attached to it, and this means one must be accountable to someone else.

Commitment Phobia

TWO: Ghosts From the Past

Another very common theme seen in both men and women. Those who grew up in homes where the parents had a horrible relationship are more likely to be afraid of commitment than those raised by parents who had a reasonably happy relationship.

This is particularly true if there were no alternative role models (e.g., happily married grandparents, or close friends whose parents were happily married).

Commitment Phobia

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THREE: Greener Pastures Await

Although seen in both men and women, it is somewhat more with men. There is always the prospect that another partner will more fully satisfy one’s desires and longings. People who perpetually struggle with the Greener Pastures fallacy have failed to accept that no one will be a perfect match. Anyone with whom they develop a relationship will have strengths and weaknesses.

The Greener Pasture aficionado fails to see that it is not a matter of finding a soul mate who is without flaws. It is all about finding a soul mate with the qualities you cannot live without, and the flaws that you can tolerate (and keep in mind, your soul mate will need to live with your flaws as well, so let’s not put on airs).

finding a soul amte

FOUR: No Dice, Home Slice

These individuals are simply terrified of rejection and failure. They have no problem being in a relationship as long as it does not involve meaningful commitment. When the “we” of a relationship starts to be more important than the “me” of the relationship, these folks head for the hills.

Asking for a deeper commitment from a “failure phobic” man or woman is similar to asking Superman to take a bite of a kryptonite appetizer. They shake with fear like the lead singer in a rumba band and quickly make towards the exit.

failure phobic

Men and women who are terrified of rejection/failure in relationships believe that were they to make a commitment and it did not work out, they would be crushed. Devastated beyond repair. Their solution to this fear? Play it safe, don’t risk too much, don’t take that big step into commitment.

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Very sad. At the end of life, no one looks back and says “I’m so glad I played it safe. My life has been so rich and full because I always played it safe and never risked my heart.”

So those are the four main obstacles to the commitment that I’ve noticed. But people can change, and no one is destined to remain stymied by these obstacles. It’s a matter of having the courage to try something new.

If you want to read more blogs by Forrest Talley, then visit his website, Forrest Talley.


Written By Forrest Talley
Originally Appeared In Forrest Talley
Republished with permission

Suffering from commitment phobia can be a mentally exhausting thing to experience, but knowing what is driving this fear can help alleviate it. So, if you are someone who is scared of commitment, then don’t be. Loving someone and being in a healthy relationship is one of the best things life has to offer. Try to move on from this fear and embrace happiness in your life.


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4 Driving Forces Behind Commitment Phobia

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  1. Dana Warr Avatar
    Dana Warr

    Reading this article I realized just how rare my marriage is. You look out into the world and see that most people are afraid of a committed relationship, because they’ve never seen or been a part of one. That’s how I was. I met my husband and his parents were still married. He was 27 at the time, he has a older and younger sister, so his parents had been together a while. My husband had never had a serious relationship before me. Not because he wasn’t ready for commitment, but because he was looking for commitment and everyone before me that he met wasn’t. At least not with him. But we clicked. As different as our personalities are , we worked.

    When we got married almost 8 years ago, I still wasn’t sure I wanted to be married, it was weird. I knew deep down inside that I wanted to be with someone who loved me, I wanted to love someone, but there was still that part of me that didn’t believe marriage was for real for real ya know. But we’ve grown together and we’re still growing and this article touched home and still was yet unknown grounds for me personally.

    I was more of that Peter Pan is still alive one in the beginning of our relationship and marriage.

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