How to Overcome Fear of a Relationship

Are fears sabotaging your love life or marriage? Here are three ways to overcome three common fears in love relationships: fear of intimacy, fear of rejection, and fear of abandonment.

relationship fearsIn Love Me, Don’t Leave Me: Overcoming Fear of Abandonment and Building Lasting, Loving Relationships, Michelle Skeen shows readers how to break the self-fulfilling cycle of mistrust, clinginess, and heartbreak and start building lasting, trusting relationships.

“Grow old along with me, the best is yet to be.” ~ Robert Browning. One of the best ways to build a better relationship is to stay focused on your long-term love. Being happy and growing old together is about deciding you want to be happy and grow old together!

And, here are three ways to overcome three common love relationship fears…




3 Common Fears in Love Relationships

Many couples – no matter how long they’ve been in love – struggle with fear of intimacy, fear of change, or fear of abandonment.

Fear of Intimacy

Even in childhood, we fear being swallowed up by another person and losing our selves. We want to be independent with our own personalities, likes, dislikes, strengths, and even weaknesses. This is one of the most common relationship fears: fear of intimacy, which can involve engulfment and emotional distance.

Engulfment occurs when we lose who we are in our love relationship. We not only lose our preferences – we may not even know what are preferences are anymore! People who have a fear of intimacy may be overly anxious about losing themselves, which makes them extremely guarded and hard to know. They may fear being trapped or suffocated, which can create relationship conflict.

Fear of Change

Sometimes our relationship fears make us afraid our partner will change; other times we fear he or she won’t change at all. Even good changes can be stressful to deal with! When familiar habits and routines are changed, we feel a sense of unease because we have adjustments to make, new routines to create. Our perception of our love relationship – and even our partner – changes. And, of course, romantic relationships change over time.

Talking honestly about changes is the best way to deal with this relationship conflict. Discussing relationship fears, hopes, motivations, and practical issues will make changes blend in with the daily routine in a much smoother way. Even fighting about your feelings is better than repressing or stuffing them down.

Fear of Abandonment

Most of us don’t want to be alone; we’re dismayed at the thought of being rejected or abandoned. Even the healthiest people have some fear of abandonment. We know we could survive alone, but life is better and easier with others (this is a primal instinct). We fear being left, rejected, or physically or even emotionally distant from your loved ones.

Becoming independent and emotionally healthy with your own life is one way to overcome this type of fear in a love relationship.

How to Overcome 3 Common Fears in Love Relationships

Be aware of your fears. It’s fine to fear of intimacy; simply knowing that you’re afraid of losing yourself and being engulfed by your love relationship could prevent it from happening. When you know what you fear, you’re in a better position to overcome it. Accepting that you’re afraid can help you deal with it.

Express yourself honestly, but be objective. If you’re afraid of being abandoned, try not to suffocate your partner with excessive attention or jealousy. Talk about your feelings, write them down – see a counselor if you’re really struggling. Don’t let your relationship fears dictate your behavior or wreck your relationship.

Learn about healthy communication in love. Do you have an extreme fear of intimacy or fear of abandonment? Find out how to successfully deal with change and how to be supportive when your partner wants to change. Read books, seek support groups, or talk to a counselor about your relationship problems.


Do you need relationship help? I can't offer advice, but you can get FREE advice and a FREE marriage assessment from marriage coach Mort Fertel. No strings attached!


If you have any thoughts or questions about overcoming the most common fears in love relationships, please comment below…

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Laurie Pawlik-Kienlen
Welcome - I'm glad you're here! I can't give advice, but you're welcome to share your experience below. I'm a writer in Vancouver; my degrees are in Psychology, Education, and Social Work. I live with my husband, two dogs, and cat. We are childless, & have made peace with it. It helps to love Jesus :-)

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1 Response

  1. I’m scared to fall in love, how do I overcome my fear of intimacy?

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