Why is it so hard to get close to people?

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Fear Of Abandonment

A deep-rooted fear of loss or abandonment is one of the most common reasons why people fear intimacy. Love and intimacy are associated with the risk of loss, which can be hard for someone who has experienced loss or abandonment in the past.

The fear of abandonment can stem from many sources. A significant loss or abandonment in childhood could lead to a subconscious fear of being abandoned as an adult. Self-doubt and insecurity, feelings of unworthiness, and social anxiety can also heighten the fear of abandonment. To overcome a fear of intimacy, it might help talk through the sources of your anxiety about loss or abandonment with a trusted friend or counselor.

Past Trauma

Trauma in a person’s past or childhood can often lead to a fear of intimacy in adulthood.

The loss of a loved one, especially at a young age, might trigger a fear of intimacy — again, because of that deep-rooted fear of being abandoned or losing someone again. Sexual assault and abuse in childhood can also lead to a serious fear of intimacy over time. The fear of being controlled or manipulated by a partner is common in survivors of abuse.

Healing from past trauma is never easy. It takes time and often professional help. Overcoming a fear of intimacy can be an essential step in recovery as it allows survivors to build meaningful, supportive, and intimate relationships in the future.

Fear Of Rejection

A fear of intimacy can also stem from a fear of rejection. This is common in people afflicted by social anxiety — if you have social anxiety, you might be highly sensitive to criticism and rejection. That sensitivity can lead to a fear of intimacy.

Rejection does hurt, as do loss and abandonment. However, people who avoid intimacy to prevent the sting of rejection often find that same pain in other sources. Building intimacy is essential, and intimate relationships can help to boost self-confidence and reduce social anxiety. So, overcoming the fear of intimacy can actually help you to overcome the fear of rejection in time.



There is never any shame in getting help or talking to a professional about your fear of intimacy.We are all afraid of getting close from time to time. But intimacy and close relationships are essential to our mental, physical, and emotional health. Don’t hesitate to seek help if you are struggling to build those intimate bonds.

1 Comment
  1. Rohini Desai says

    Well said Doctor! I really appreciate your sharing n suggestions. Your each and every post is giving new insights, very helpful and inspiring.
    God bless you for very informative posts on various subjects.

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