How to Identify Attachment Styles on First Dates – Health and Wellness

Attachment style is a good predictor of how a person will behave in intimacy, information that is vital when choosing a partner. In this article we give you information so that you can take advantage of this information.

Identifying attachment styles on first dates is an advantage, as it can save us a lot of suffering. If you have ever lamented your bad luck in love, this could be the cause. In this way, although it is not always possible to “choose” who to fall in love with, being aware of how a person is linked to you on an emotional level gives you a great advantage. If we say this, it is for a very specific reason. Having a partner with an avoidant style, for example, is associated with an inability to understand emotions, both their own and those of others. They are people with problems establishing what we know in colloquial language as complicity.

Likewise, research from the University of Milano-Bicocca, in Italy, and published in the journal Frontiers in Psychology, warns us of something very concrete: having a partner defined by a secure attachment by our side makes it more likely that the relationship will have future and, moreover, a future in which we feel good.

On the contrary, insecure ties manifest themselves with aggressive dynamics.

The way in which we bond with our caregivers in childhood defines in many cases the way in which we bond with our partners.

Keys to identify attachment styles on first dates

Before delving into how to identify attachment styles on our first dates, it is important to clarify what “attachment” is. Well, attachment styles define how we bond with our parents in childhood. It was John Bowly who developed this theory and explained to us that there are four typologies: secure, anxious-ambivalent, disorganized and avoidant.

These first experiences have a great impact on the life of the human being. There will be children who had caregivers who attended to every need and knew how to offer an enriching and safe affection. Others, on the other hand, had to deal with emotional coldness, abandonment or abuse.

Everything lived in those first years of life also determines the way in which affective relationships are built in adulthood.

Doctors Mario Mikulincer Phillip and R. Shaver explain in their book Attachment in Adulthood (2016) that about 35-40 percent of people say they feel insecure in their relationships. Only 60-65 percent report being able to enjoy safe, loving, and satisfying relationships.

It is evident that a happy childhood is the substrate to achieve a full life. Therefore, being able to identify attachment styles as soon as possible in those people that we are attracted to would guarantee, in a certain way, “getting it right” in our search for a partner. Let’s see how.

Although it is estimated that attachment styles are stable over time, there are people who do manage to overcome the gaps and affective suffering experienced with their parents, to build happy and satisfying relationships in adulthood.

Ask him how his last romantic relationship was

Bringing up past relationships is common on a first date. It is a good topic of conversation with which we can obtain relevant information about the person in front of us. Asking our date, flirt or that figure with whom we have matched in an application how their last relationship was is an effective strategy.

Thanks to it we can deduce the following:

Secure attachment. You will have no problem talking about this topic. People with a secure attachment generally have longer, more committed relationships. In addition, they do not usually speak negatively about their ex-partners.

Disorganized attachment. They will tell you that they prefer not to talk about that subject, it is a story from the past that they do not want to give importance to. They care about the here and now.

Anxious attachment. People with an anxious style will show some emotional restlessness. They will feel distressed or even carry some discomfort or anger with them when talking about their past relationships. Their relationships are always painful and even traumatic.

avoidant attachment. In this case, it is common for them to close in a band. They prefer you to talk to them.

Let’s ask how was your childhood

To identify attachment styles in our “possible” partners, it is interesting to look at the story of their childhood and the relationship with their reference figures. It is true that this topic already belongs to a more intimate and delicate field and we can find certain understandable barriers.

In these cases, it is important to act with caution and if we prefer, talk first about what our childhood was like, and then encourage the other.

Secure attachment. You will probably speak normally about your childhood, highlighting good experiences and bad experiences. He will be honest and, in general, will always show a good relationship with his parents.

Disorganized attachment. People defined by disorganized attachment will say they don’t remember their childhood well. They will make a description of key moments in which they were happy, but they never get to go deeper, to talk in detail about their parents.

Anxious attachment. In this case, it is common for men and women defined by an anxious attachment to talk in depth about their childhood. They will do it, but in a messy way, mixing the past with the present, lamenting aspects that they missed, complicated dynamics at the family level that continue to drag on.

avoidant attachment. People defined by an avoidant attachment can do two things: lie or dodge the question.

Identify attachment styles in the first weeks of relationship

It may be that during the first dates that person who attracts us tries to show the best of himself. This can cause parts of her personality and attitude to appear made up. However, as the days and weeks go by, we can already deduce attachment styles. These would be some clues:

Secure attachment. We are dealing with a person who can be trusted, someone who knows how to respond to our emotions and needs. Also, they are not dominated by fears or insecurity. Jealous behavior does not appear, they are independent, attentive, they know how to take care of us and themselves without leading to dependencies.

Disorganized attachment. They are unpredictable people. There are times that they reveal themselves as people in great need of affection, very affectionate, kind and complicit. However, after a few days doubts and mistrust arise. They need tokens of our commitment.

Anxious attachment. In this case we will be dealing with people dominated by many fears and oriented to building dependent relationships. They show fear of abandonment, fear that something will happen to their partner, that they will be betrayed, fear that what happened in previous relationships will repeat itself with the current partner. They are very insecure people.

avoidant attachment. Among all the attachment styles that we can find in a relationship, this is one of the most complex. They are people who do not let themselves be loved, they are elusive and distrustful. It is evident that they lack love, but they neither know how to offer it nor how to receive it.

In conclusion. While it is true that we will never be able to 100 percent identify the type of attachment in a couple in the early stages, there are always signs, attitudes, and behaviors that we can read between the lines.

Finally, one last comment. Let’s keep in mind that our attachment style can change depending on different variables or even the context. For example, a person may display a secure attachment style with her family and an ambivalent attachment style with her partner or friends. Hence, it is the global whole on which we recommend you draw conclusions.

Source: The Mind is Wonderful

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