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Stick With It Or Bail Out?: Human Attachment Behavior At A Glance

Human attachment behavior is very complicated. Specifically, the expression of intimacy between humans and the corresponding concept of trust associated with it is something much more than simple or just par for the day. There are all kinds of pretenders out there who claim to possess a lucid understanding of intimacy and trust – they pretend to understand it and they pretend to give it to respective human beings. Some of the most noteworthy individuals in the field of psychology readily dispense catchy phrases to engage the phonemic receptivity of fellow human minds. Alas, the catchy phrases only skim the surface and consequently deliver McFriendships and McTherapy, solidifying social plasticity and a paucity of interactive understanding and existential meaning. 

            The unquenchable thirst and insatiable appetite for quantity has successfully overridden the balance and finiteness of quality. As a result, the science of peddling is bursting at the seam, thereby leaving tempered empathy by the wayside in a society riddled with madness and chaos. In some cases, the more quality is sought out, the more quantity is bound to be offered. A sad state of affairs indeed. And all of these words written without the slightest breath or mention of what human attachment behavior actually is. Without getting caught up in the complexities of human attachment behavior, it is simple to see that the dynamics of the individual within the context of interaction is largely dependent and related to childhood development and childhood conditioning.

            No, this is not an attempt to psychoanalytically wallow in the past. Rather, it is a gesture to reach for what is authentic (or inauthentic) in a person’s life or current status of their life. For instance, how has years of parental and sibling conditioning influenced the development of very specific and perhaps inflexible behaviors for the individual? What behaviors have risen to the surface as the individual ages, attempting to reach a peak of individual maturity?

            Thoughtful questions to consider.

            While the topic of human attachment behavior is nothing short of spellbinding, allowing for limitless amounts of conversation and analysis, there will not be an overly analytic dissection of it at this time. Understanding such a complicated topic requires the passing of time, carefully planting seed after seed until a concrete understanding may be reached.

            For now though, let’s make a brief list of statements that may give rise to caution in your mind. For instance, by very wary of any individual who makes statements like these;

1. In this jungle, we eat what we kill.

2. Well that person didn’t win the genetic lottery did they?

3. I am an indisputable genius in expertise or field X or Y.

            These listed statements are intended to raise caution in a rational-emotive sense. When uttered by an individual, the underlying message is; I pretend to express intimacy when interacting with others or – more accurately; I gravely fear intimacy and have yet to make a sincere emotional connection with another human being because I may have sustained a severe attachment injury that I am unaware of or cannot bear to relive.

Human attachment behavior is very complex. The human desire and need to find intimacy and be authentic are often thwarted by subconscious doings of the mind – behaviors expressed by an individual that are considered to be inauthentic.

Matthew Polkinghorne

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