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How to Heal from a Breakup When You Have Anxious Attachment

by | Meeting People, Moving On

Jan 10, 2024

Breakups can be a tumultuous experience for anyone, but for those with anxious attachment styles, the pain can be amplified. Anxious attachment, characterized by a deep desire for intimacy and a fear of abandonment, can make moving on from a relationship particularly challenging. However, healing is possible with time, effort, and the right tools.

Understanding Anxious Attachment

Attachment theory, a framework for understanding how individuals form and maintain close relationships, posits that attachment styles develop in early childhood. Anxious attachment arises from inconsistent or unpredictable caregiving experiences, leading to a heightened need for reassurance and a constant worry about abandonment.

Breakups can trigger a cascade of intense emotions for those with anxious attachment styles. The fear of losing the relationship intensifies, leading to obsessive thoughts, questioning, and relentless pursuit of contact.

These behaviors, while driven by a desire to reconnect, often push the partner further away, perpetuating the cycle of anxiety and heartache.

Acknowledging and Processing Emotions

The first step towards healing is to acknowledge and accept the range of emotions you’re experiencing. Allow yourself to feel the sadness, anger, fear, and confusion that are natural responses to a breakup. Bottling up these emotions will only prolong the healing process.

No Contact: A Bridge to Healing

While it may be tempting to cling to any form of connection with your ex, maintaining no contact can be crucial for emotional recovery. This means avoiding phone calls, texts, social media interactions, and any other avenues that could prolong the pain. No contact allows you to focus on yourself, process your emotions, and build a sense of self-reliance.

Recognizing Your Triggers

Identifying the events, behaviors, or thoughts that trigger your anxiety is essential to managing it. Once you recognize your triggers, you can develop strategies to cope with them more healthily. This might involve mindfulness techniques, journaling, or spending time with supportive friends or family.

Self-Care as the Foundation

During this difficult time, self-care becomes paramount. Prioritize activities that bring you joy and relaxation, whether exercising, listening to music, spending time in nature, or pursuing hobbies. Nurturing your physical and mental well-being will give you the strength to navigate the healing process.

Seeking Professional Support

If you struggle to cope with the emotional turmoil of a breakup, consider seeking professional help. A therapist can provide you with personalized guidance, support, and techniques to manage your attachment style and move forward with greater resilience.

Breaking Free from the Anxious Pattern

Healing from a breakup with anxious attachment requires a conscious effort to break free from the pattern of anxious behaviors. Challenge your core beliefs about relationships and self-worth. Learn to manage your emotions healthily rather than letting them consume you.

Building a More Secure Attachment Style

Over time, with consistent effort and self-awareness, you can develop a more secure attachment style. This means learning to trust your own judgment, valuing your independence, and establishing healthy relationship boundaries.

Embrace the Journey of Healing

Healing from a breakup with anxious attachment takes time, patience, and self-compassion. Don’t be discouraged by setbacks; view them as opportunities to learn and grow. Remember, you are not alone. Many people have experienced the challenges of anxious attachment and have emerged stronger and more resilient.


Breakups can be painful experiences, but they can also be catalysts for personal growth. By understanding your attachment style, embracing the healing process, and seeking support when needed, you can emerge from this difficult time with a stronger sense of self and a newfound ability to build healthier, more fulfilling relationships.

By Emilie Schleif

Emilie Schleif is a Lifestyle Writer at Whatsdalatest, where she covers all things relationships and wellness—born and raised in La Canada Flintridge. She currently lives in Hamburg and loves running, hiking, and walking with her dog, Jasper.

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