Relationship commitment phobia

Many people miss opportunities for a meaningful long-term relationship because of misunderstood fears of making an emotional long-term commitment.

June 14, 2018 17:31
Illustrative photo of marriage rings

Illustrative photo of marriage rings. (photo credit: TNS)

Psychologist John Grohol (2018) writes, “People with a commitment phobia long for and want a long-term connection with another person, but their overwhelming anxiety prevents them from staying in any relationship for too long. If pressed for a commitment, they are far more likely to leave the relationship than to make the commitment. Or they may initially agree to the commitment, then back down days or weeks later, because of their overwhelming anxiety and fears.”

Mimi, in her early 20s, was clearly in love with Mark, 27. Mark had proposed to Mimi and although she loved him and was sure that he was the man that she wanted to spend her life with, she could not say yes. Instead, she panicked and told Mark that she needed time to figure it all out. She felt overwhelmed, but did not understand why. Clearly, her anxiety had risen drastically.


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