Relationships are not only about tenderness, affection, physical, and spiritual intimacy. There is always space for fears and doubts – in your choice, in the reciprocity of a partner, in the future of a relationship.
Internal fears have one feature – people often do not notice them, but they are always there. And these fears have quite a strong impact on life. Some fears affect more, others less, but they all control a person’s choices and actions.
Awareness of these internal fears will help you not only avoid mistakes in your behavior but also smooth out conflict situations in communication with your partner, avoid quarrels, understand your chosen one better, and help the dearest people overcome their fears. So, let’s find out fear of rejection symptoms and consider how to get over the fear of rejection in relationships.
Why Do People Fear Rejection in Relationships?
Like any psychological problem, fear of rejection does not come out of the blue. There are 2 principal reasons why people fear rejection in romantic relationships.
Severe mental pain after breaking up with a previous partner. It can be a severe loss of a loved one or mental pain inflicted by the disregard of the ex-partner and a sharp break-up of relationships. It turns out that due to the experienced shock, the fear of being rejected and abandoned settled in a person’s subconscious and firmly entrenched there. So, when meeting a potential life partner, people with a fear of rejection jump off the deep and try to do everything in their power to make a beloved fall in love with them. This is what a lot of men do when trying to find a woman for relationships.
Childhood issues. As a rule, the scenario of the appearance of the fear of rejection is as follows: a child received a lot of love, warmth, and affection from parents, but then family relations change, and the baby stops feeling the love of beloved people. For example, it can be a divorce of parents. Initially, such children feel that they are loved and cherished, but suddenly, one of their beloved people leaves their life. Thus, the kid gets a feeling of abandonment, anxiety, and mental anguish.
There is another scenario of developing the fear of rejection in dating. If in childhood, you did not receive answers to “forbidden” questions, and the promised requests remained unfulfilled, then in adulthood, alas, it is difficult to avoid the fear of rejection. Therefore, growing up, many people are afraid to express their requests aloud, ask clarifying questions, and frankly admit their desires because of fear of rejection.
Another option for the formation of fear of rejection is hyperprotection in early childhood. This happens when parents are so protective and caring that their baby cannot even imagine spending some time alone.
A mild fear of rejection usually does not interfere with the relationship of a person. As a rule, such people are faithful and affectionate. They value the existing relationship and are ready to resolve conflicts peacefully. But with a strongly pronounced fear, relations often bring pain and frustration to both partners. For example, women can beg for evidence of love, and it becomes for a man unbearable over time. A woman is simply trying to make sure that the feelings of her beloved man are still alive, and at the same time, she constantly monitors her partner. And if the man wants to take a break from eternal control and tries to cancel a date with his beloved, she perceives this as the beginning of the end of their relationship.
Fear of Rejection in Relationships Signs
First of all, you should learn how to identify the fear of rejection. Therefore, we would like to bring to your attention 7 signs of fear of rejection.
A person tries to please a beloved in every possible way and soften all the sharp corners, abandoning oneself and forgetting about own desires and needs. A partner with a fear of rejection carefully avoids conflicts in relationships and always takes a neutral stance because does not want to cause negative emotions in a loved one.
A person with a fear of rejection often tries on the image of a parent being in a romantic relationship with someone. Thus, the partner is trying to become indispensable and necessary for a loved one. This is a rather aggressive position in which people become hardened and often turn into tyrants and despots. In order not to experience fear of rejection, people try to isolate themselves from situations where they would need praise or approval.
3. Aggression and manipulation
People with fear to be rejected may respond to refusal with aggression, as resentment and anger arise in their souls. Such people often achieve what they want through threats or manipulations, “If you do not praise me, I will be offended” or “I will help you if you do what I ask.”
People with a fear of rejection often rebel and fight when disagreeing with something. They enter into a spiritual struggle with themselves and others. Sometimes such people become embittered social outcasts, "lone wolves." Therefore, if your loved one often rebels when does not agree with your opinion, this may be a sign of fear of rejection.
People who are afraid to be rejected tend to withdraw at the slightest criticism of a partner, quarrel, or disagreement because they are afraid that their loved one will reject them. Thus, they find themselves in isolation, they are oppressed by anxiety, depression, and a feeling of complete loneliness. This can harm not only relationships but also human health.
Have you ever noticed that you start experiencing groundless anxiety when a loved one does not answer the calls, stays behind after hours, or spends more time with friends? This may be one of the signs of the fear of rejection. Since first of all, you begin to think that a beloved person no longer loves you and wants to be with you.
7. Problems in intimate life
Fear of rejection affects not only romantic relationships but also the sex life of a couple in love. Often, people who are afraid of being rejected and abandoned remain unsatisfied and cannot get the real pleasure of having sex with a loved one. This is due to the fear of confessing their true desires and secret fantasies to a partner, as the beloved may reject them.
How to Get Over Fear of Rejection in Yourself
According to one of the fear of rejection quotes, “This is a state of dissatisfaction and inner emptiness.” Concern over the prospect of being isolated, humiliated, and rejected is one of the greatest human fears. Even change does not scare people as much as loneliness. The result of the fear of rejection is the strict framework that a person establishes to avoid this feeling. People cease to trust their impulses, are afraid to relax and be themselves. Therefore, you should know how to overcome the fear of rejection.
1. Do not deny your fear
If you notice that you are often driven by an inexplicable fear of rejection, do not try to deny it. Because in this way, you just strengthen your fear. Admit to yourself that you need love, attention, and care and do not get yourself in a state that your beloved will not love you or pay attention to you.
2. Try to sort out your feeling
To overcome the fear of rejection and get rid of the stress and aggression that you experience in everyday situations, you should sort out your feeling. To do this, you need a sheet of A4 and a pen. The point is to highlight the problems that bother you most often. Write down situations in which, as it seems to you, you are rejected by a loved one. Then, rate your stress over each situation on a scale of 1 to 10. Perform an analysis of the obtained results and compare the estimates. Try to reconsider your behavior and realize that in many cases, you exaggerate the fear of rejection.
3. Identify the root cause
Analyze why you are so confident that you will be rejected. Perhaps the reasons have dragged on since childhood. For example, your parents could take care of you, but at the same time, they never openly answered all the exciting children's questions, making references to “unchildlike” topics or lack of time.
4. Do not concentrate on childhood issues
To get rid of the fear of rejection which aroused when you were a kid, you should understand that the times of childhood are left behind, and in adulthood, no one will reject you for no apparent reason. Therefore, if you realize that the fear of rejection is just the tales of the past, it becomes much easier for you to get rid of it. You should learn to perceive people not through the filter of your childhood memories but through objective reality. After all, the past has nothing to do with people who surround you now, doesn’t it?
5. Think like a man
This is advice for women who experience the fear of rejection phobia. Take an example from men – “turn on” male logic in those cases where it is simply necessary. For example, instead of fantasizing about why a beloved man ignores your calls, try to look for the real reasons for his “silence.” This is banally, but the man may simply not hear a phone call, be at a meeting, or talk with his boss.
How to Help a Partner in Overcoming Fear of Rejection
Of course, it is much easier to cope with the fear of rejection with the help and support of a loved one. You should act as a team to make your romantic relationship truly happy and healthy. So, let’s consider how you can help your partner in overcoming fear of rejection.
1. Show your love to a beloved
In fact, a person who expects rejection needs love very much. However, such people are afraid to speak about their needs openly and ask a partner for attention, affection, and tenderness. After all, if they suddenly find themselves rejected in such a defenseless state (openly asking for the most important things) – it will be very painful and intolerable for them. Therefore, show your love to a beloved as often as possible, and your partner will be happy to know about your feelings.
2. Be in touch
As it has been already mentioned earlier, people with the fear of rejection feel very anxious when a loved one does not pick up the phone. Therefore, try not to ignore the partner’s calls and messages and be in touch as often as possible. Moreover, try to warn your loved one when you are late for a date or stay behind after hours. It will make your beloved trust you and be less nervous.
3. Develop listening skills
Listen carefully to a partner when they talk about their needs or desires. Pay attention even to the little things. Besides, you should be able to lend your beloved a sympathetic ear when they really need it. This is the best way to show your loved one that it is possible to rely on you and count on your help and support.
4. Spend more time together
Come up with small rituals that will help you demonstrate your love for each other. Go to bed at the same time, go for walks together, kiss your partner before leaving home, send messages wishing good morning and good night if you are far from each other, etc. It is also important to find time to communicate with each other without any electronic devices (including phones). You can schedule a special date or joint occupation once or twice a week. Many partners feel the love of each other to the fullest extent when they have a good time together.
5. Turn to a psychologist for help
Getting rid of inner fears and complexes is a very time-consuming process of working on oneself. If the problem of rejection is so acute that it prevents a partner from leading a normal life, talk your beloved one into visiting a psychologist who knows well the fear of rejection psychology and will offer your loved one a methodology for solving the problem. After all, a psychological disorder in the form of fear of rejection should be treated with a complex of certain actions.
It is important to understand that all people are afraid of something, but it is quite possible to control and deal with fears. And the fear of rejection is no exception. It is only necessary to determine it, and after that, take measures to overcome it. Fears prevent people from building comfortable and strong love relationships. Therefore, the sooner you start getting over fear of rejection, the more chances you have to create healthy romantic relationships or strengthen the existing ones. We wish you good luck!