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what makes some people afraid of confrontation?


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Im a talker. Im very expressive. Ideally I work through my feelings with my partner and try and resolve issues by meeting in the middle and coming to a place of mutual resolve. Even if it starts out messy or heated..I am always willing to stick around and deal..and communicate clearly with what I need in order to get to that place of resolve for both myself and my partner.

 

this is not always how I approach it, but this is my intention.. Sometimes with different partners, it goes well. ease, allowing..mutual flow of reciprocal exchange..this has by far been the healthiest approach for me!

 

BUT sometimes its like removing blood from a stone..My last relationship was torture because my ex would either stonewall or dismiss me completely..walk away and minimize. It was infuriating, and so unhealthy for me. I would literally feel like I was on the clock for discussing my feelings and his lack of openess to resolve, would make me chase after him like a pathetic doormat. ( I realize staying in this unhealthy circumstance was just that, UNHEALTHY , which is why he is my ex )

 

 

My question: Why are some people so open and willing to talk about issues in relationships and heal. ..while others are terrified of confrontation and hashing things out?

 

why? why? why?

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Because they are not necessarily as articulate as you.

Because as a child, they NEVER "won" a verbal confrontation with a parent or authority figure.

Because as a child, they were taught to avoid confrontation.

 

They are not "terrified". They are avoidant. Huge difference.

 

In the future.....state your case calmly. And tell "him" you have given him a lot to think about, and will give him a few days to digest it and get back to you.

And then....back off.

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In my opinion: willingness to talk things through and work it out requires EFFORT, while dumping the RS with difficulties/problems and trade them for someone new to have infatuation and honeymoon phase all over again is MUCH easier.

 

There you have it: fighters try to work things through, cowards take the easy way out.

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Lucha --- OP didn't say he was dumped. He said the relationship was now over. Your "lense" is showing.

 

Randy -- I looked at your other threads, and by your own admission --- you are anxious, needy, and emotional. That is a far cry from saying you are a "talker and

expressive".

 

So there you have it --- people who walk away from an argument are not cowards. They are avoidant.

People who chase after them are not "talkers". They are codependent.

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It probably has a lot to do with how someone is brought up and past relationships and even the environment he/she was exposed to. I also love to talk but I dread bringing up sticky topics but I know when it needs to be done. I've also learned from the people whom I have lived around about how to do this in a healthy manner.

 

But if someone has had bad experiences with bringing up even the tiniest topics and they were blown way out of proportion they probably aren't going to want to communicate to others either.

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Lucha --- OP didn't say he was dumped. He said the relationship was now over. Your "lense" is showing.

 

Randy -- I looked at your other threads, and by your own admission --- you are anxious, needy, and emotional. That is a far cry from saying you are a "talker and

expressive".

 

So there you have it --- people who walk away from an argument are not cowards. They are avoidant.

People who chase after them are not "talkers". They are codependent.

 

 

MHOWE: My anxiousness, neediness and emotional behavior stems from an unwillingness from my ex partner to participate in the conversation. These behaviors are triggered by that " avoidance ". When a partner participates/ cooperates in the relationship by dealing with confrontation, I am not anxious, emotional or needy. When a partner stays around to deal, I am secure and safe. I do not feel that co-dependant pull. Willingness to talk and deal, is not a stinky smelling deterrant..it is a solid healthy mature apprioach to relationships.. Don't rationalize a person being " avoidant " because someone is needy.. as I said..before the "avoidant" behavior became frequent..there was no neediness..once it was realized ( and by then I was in love, albeit co dependant love ) it became more and more clear he was unable to deal with confrontation....but don't say the neediness is the deterant for not dealing..that is an unfair statement. the origin of his avoidance lies in him..the neediness is just a consequence.

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I was always trying things from a differemnt angle..different approaches..I was not needy but the more and more he would shut down, or shut off, or walk away..the more angry and frustrated I got..so that behavior seemed extremely hurtful and unfair..Which would make anyone needy or insecure from someone they love..just sayin'

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The avoidance lies in him.

The neediness lies in you. It is not a consequence.

 

Someone unwilling to talk to you should not provoke that behavior. It should "provoke" you setting healthy boundaries and dealing with the lack of compatability.

No codependent behavior.

 

My bf had avoidant behavior. It did not make me anxious, needy or emotional. It made me sad, and disappointed to realize that we would not have the

relationship I wanted and deserved. And I told him so.

 

He made the choice to stop avoiding confrontation or feelings. And because BOTH of us were willing to work through it, we are coming up on 5 years together.

 

Boundaries.

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I was always trying things from a differemnt angle..different approaches..I was not needy but the more and more he would shut down, or shut off, or walk away..the more angry and frustrated I got..so that behavior seemed extremely hurtful and unfair..Which would make anyone needy or insecure from someone they love..just sayin'

 

No, it wouldn't. Your anger and frustration are justified.

Your needy and insecure comes from within.

 

When faced with someone who will not meet you half way --- the healthy choice is to accept and find someone who will.

Not chase after them telling them they hurt you.

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My question: Why are some people so open and willing to talk about issues in relationships and heal. ..while others are terrified of confrontation and hashing things out?

There are many reasons for this, in my opinion. It may be because:

 

1.) They are terrified of fighting/arguing and fear the relationship will end as a result. (And/or they are highly sensitive to conflict and don't want to confront problems).

2.) They are too exhausted from other issues going in their life and feel they don't have (or want) the time to discuss conflicts in their relationship.

3.) They want their relationship to be perfect.

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There are many reasons for this, in my opinion. It may be because:

 

1.) They are terrified of fighting/arguing and fear the relationship will end as a result. (And/or they are highly sensitive to conflict and don't want to confront problems).

2.) They are too exhausted from other issues going in their life and feel they don't have (or want) the time to discuss conflicts in their relationship.

3.) They want their relationship to be perfect.

 

my ex hated confrontation - it was one of the first things he told me when we started seeing each other. makes him uncomfortable. But I think the fact that it is also hard for him to open up emotionally makes it hard for him to have confrontations......

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I can very much relate to that. My ex I think was also avoidant. When a discussion or inagreement arised, she would always react with 'I need a smoke' or 'hey look what's on tv' and it made me so mad. I realize within me lies the source of my neediness and insecurities, but they were not triggered until she was showing avoidant behaviour. For example. My ex and her ex were still very good friends. I didnt have any problem whatsoever with that because I knew she loved me. I was never jealous, needy, or clingy BEFORE she started to withdraw. I was just a happy girl finally content with how things were in life. Her withdrawing caused me to act suspicious, pushing, etc. It basically triggered all feelings I once felt when dumped or rejected.

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I think some people use it for emotional control. To feel like they are in control of a situation and another person (even if they aren't). It must be quite the power trip.

 

The trade off though is intimacy.

 

A lot is probably learned. It's worked for them before. And perhaps someone hasn't examined it in themselves before, or decided yet that there is any need to change it for themselves.

 

mhowe made a good point. It seems you found someone with your ex who would feed right into your own issues. He'd withdraw and stonewall you, and that in turn would drive you mad and make you almost desperate for him to talk to you. That almost seems like abandonment issues, to me. That you have felt that way before - ignored, dismissed, invalidated, neglected - and he hit those buttons for you.

 

I understand that. Because there have been times in my life where someone behaving like that had made me feel much like you. Almost crazy. Like my personal worth was on the line; it made me feel a level of sadness way beyond the situation, and as though all caring that person may have had for me was in question.

 

After working on myself, I'm at a point where I simply wouldn't remain involved with someone with those particular lack of skills (communicating about vulnerable and difficult feelings). Even though I feel confident I wouldn't plummet down into emotional vortex from it, it simply is not something I myself am prepared to 'work through' with someone.

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Ifighters try to work things through, cowards take the easy way out.

Not neccessarily. I had a "friend" once who literally made up lies just to have a reason to be mad at me. She was always looking for a fight, and I tried everything to make things right and keep our friendship. Believe me when I say: It was a game I couldn't win. I should've just given up on her after her first lie and left her in her misery. (Of course, none of us are really taught to do that; we're all taught that "friends are forever" and "don't give up friendships without a fight.")

 

"Taking the easy way out" in this sense, wouldn't have made me a coward at all. If anything, it would've made me stronger.

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Of course I didn't mean when your "friend" lies to you and deliberately picks fights w you. That would be an example of her not wanting to try het best to make the friendship work. I mean when both people are mature and problems arise, the adult solution would be to at least talk things through and give it your best before you bail out.

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Well --- it would be a wonderful world if everybody had no baggage and a developed personality when we meet and date them.

But that isn't reality.

 

So the best solution is to find someone who brings out the best in you --- not the one that will hit all your hidden triggers.

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The avoidance lies in him.

The neediness lies in you. It is not a consequence.

 

Someone unwilling to talk to you should not provoke that behavior. It should "provoke" you setting healthy boundaries and dealing with the lack of compatability.

No codependent behavior.

 

My bf had avoidant behavior. It did not make me anxious, needy or emotional. It made me sad, and disappointed to realize that we would not have the

relationship I wanted and deserved. And I told him so.

 

He made the choice to stop avoiding confrontation or feelings. And because BOTH of us were willing to work through it, we are coming up on 5 years together.

 

Boundaries.

 

I see what you mean. I agree. It made me sad also, but unlike you..I didn't have the cohones/ confidence to state that I would not tolerate that behavior, and ultimately end the relationship..Instead I stayed, which only exaccerbated the codependant, neediness emotional behavior.

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I can very much relate to that. My ex I think was also avoidant. When a discussion or inagreement arised, she would always react with 'I need a smoke' or 'hey look what's on tv' and it made me so mad. I realize within me lies the source of my neediness and insecurities, but they were not triggered until she was showing avoidant behaviour. For example. My ex and her ex were still very good friends. I didnt have any problem whatsoever with that because I knew she loved me. I was never jealous, needy, or clingy BEFORE she started to withdraw. I was just a happy girl finally content with how things were in life. Her withdrawing caused me to act suspicious, pushing, etc. It basically triggered all feelings I once felt when dumped or rejected.

 

I can relate to this bigtime

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I think some people use it for emotional control. To feel like they are in control of a situation and another person (even if they aren't). It must be quite the power trip.

 

 

i think mine does that....avoids as a way to control the situation so that it is on his terms. Also, I think it could be because some people don't want to be reminded of their bad behavior. Like they hate themselves so much that confrontation reminds themselves of WHY.

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My cohones thank you.

 

Randy --- it is simple self respect.

 

One can never "change" someone else. I could not change my bf's avoidant behavior. And I put up with it for a while, not out of neediness --- but because I

was used to it (growing up, previous bf). However, I reached a point where I releazied I wanted better. I deserved better.

 

And so I told him --- and he said "fine, I dont' want to be with you". And we walked away from each other.

And he realized....he wanted to be with me.

So we talked --- and I said "this behavior won't work. We both have to want it..."

 

And he changed. Because he wanted to.

But if he had not wanted to --- then we would have stayed apart. Because life is too short to not find happiness.

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i think mine does that....avoids as a way to control the situation so that it is on his terms. Also, I think it could be because some people don't want to be reminded of their bad behavior. Like they hate themselves so much that confrontation reminds themselves of WHY.

 

I'm sorry, but this is off base to a degree.

 

Yes, it is a behavior that attempts to bring them control.

But not because it reminds them of their bad behavior ---- they don't judge their behavior as bad!!!!

And they don't hate themselves so much ---

 

What they don't want is confrontation. Someone in their face and forcing them to find the words to articulate emotions they dont' want to deal with.

 

This doesn't make them evil, or the devil incarnate. They are as "wounded" as you are.

They don't hate themselves....nor do they hate you.

They seek comfort --- in isolation.

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My cohones thank you.

 

Randy --- it is simple self respect.

 

One can never "change" someone else. I could not change my bf's avoidant behavior. And I put up with it for a while, not out of neediness --- but because I

was used to it (growing up, previous bf). However, I reached a point where I releazied I wanted better. I deserved better.

 

And so I told him --- and he said "fine, I dont' want to be with you". And we walked away from each other.

And he realized....he wanted to be with me.

So we talked --- and I said "this behavior won't work. We both have to want it..."

 

And he changed. Because he wanted to.

But if he had not wanted to --- then we would have stayed apart. Because life is too short to not find happiness.

 

Im learning this. I have gained back my dignity and self respect in the last few months of healing..and wouldn't put myself in front of someone like this again..and jump ship sooner if I had.. thanks for the responses MHOWE.

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