Many couples come to marriage counseling for a primary issue but sexual issues are usually in the background. Adult attachment styles play a big part in those sexual issues. Below I will give are the 3 most common attachment styles along with a 4th one learned from Jeff Hickey, LCSW. This is some of what I learned in this awesome training:
Adult Attachment Styles
Secure: Self confident, socially skilled, comfortable with closeness, more able to stable and satisfying long-term relationships.
Anxious: Preoccupied with rejection and abandonment, seek romantic relationships, but see partners as untrustworthy, pursue to get a reaction or attention.
Avoidant: Uncomfortable with true closeness, self disclosure and dependence on others, utilize distance and numbing to veegulate affect. (Mikulincer & Shaver, 2007)
What This Means to You and How it Can Effect Sex in Your Marriage:
Secure: You have a positive view of self, no need to attack mate or use negative coping skills, comfort with closeness and give and take in bed, be in tune with spouse’s sexual needs (non pornified needs), sex deepens your love and increases secure attachment, sex doesn’t define sex.
Anxious: You are often over vigilant, sex is priming way to be close but lacks intimacy and closeness, preoccupied with spouse’s approval, preoccupied with performance not intimacy, difficulty asserting sexual needs, tend to have less satisfaction, lack of orgasm.
Avoidant: You are most likely uncomfortable with closeness and true intimate transparency, not comfortable with self disclosure, using distance And numbing to control feeling and closeness, stonewalling, looks independent on the outside but fearful of showing true self.
Disorganized: You use a mixture of anxious and avoidant attachment styles, neither of which works to make you feel good About yourself or be open and intimate with your spouse.
If you see yourself or your spouse in the negative styles don’t lose hope, they aren’t set in stone you can learn a healthier style. A small change can transform your marriage in a good way. We would love to help.