Fear of commitment

Fear of commitment is a well-known phrase we hear being banded about and may even describe you, if that’s something you struggle with and as we unconsciously fail to commit, life passes us by.

Someone who has trouble committing has a fear of losing something to gain something new. When we commit to someone, we leave one life behind to start another and that’s what people may struggle with. The reality for anyone who has difficulty with commitment is making a wrong decision, but no matter what decision we make, there is always another life we could have lived.

The problem doesn’t end there. When we deal with commitment issues, we will have to deal with commitment issues on a bigger scale, because those commitment issues will also go on to impact us in other areas of our life too. The irony is that when we’re unable to commit, we fear what we may need the most, which is the intimacy and security that comes with a loving committed relationship.

The majority of us may want to have a secure and loving relationship, we’re just too afraid to commit to making it happen. The fear we feel comes from something that happens in our formative years, from something we’ve seen, or from an insecurity that has embedded itself in the commitment issues we struggle with. That’s the bad part. The good part is it’s something we can sort out.

So, what should we do?

Always engage yourself in trying to understand and change what it is that’s stopping you from committing to someone or something. I believe that when we begin to work through the issues that have brought us to this place, we will begin to see and recognise why we have commitment issues. If you see that the symptom is the commitment issue and the cause is something you’ve seen that has an effect on the way you deal with your relationship, then you’re half way there.

It may simply stem from our parents and their parents before them. It’s often the disharmony between people that we’re affected by that brings us to this place. On some level, we must deal with the disharmony and do the opposite.


30 Jan, 2014

6 thoughts on “Fear of commitment

  1. I will commit to something and then I have second thoughts. Then I will try to come up with excuses to get out of the commitment.

    I had no problems committing to my current husband and would do it all over again. HE asked me to marry him after dating for a week! I was really surprised but I felt very comfortable with him and I had known him briefly before we started dating. I have no regrets.

    I think we commit too fast sometimes without thinking things through. Maybe someone caught us at a vulnerable moment and we just automatically said yes. I have a problem with time. I like my personal time and would rather be at home doing things that I need to do; so when I commit I don’t think about the toll something will take on my time.

    I try to get out of it soon after I commit usually unsuccessfully though, because then I feel guilty about not doing it or disappointing someone.

    1. Thanks Lisa. From what you say it sounds as though you struggle with confidence, something we’ve probably all had to deal with at some point in our lives.

      As a child I would do the same. I would say yes so as not to let someone down, then have second thoughts also. The more confident I became the more I made the decision that was right for me. If what I was committing too felt right, if it didn’t I said no.

      It’s easy to see why you would feel guilty committing to something then saying no. I believe the less confident we are the more we will run away from commitment, whatever that commitment is.

  2. I also have second thoughts after saying yes to a commitment, but then again I am always unsure if the choice I make on anything is the right choice. Most times I do not think things through and other times it seems like I over-think things. If someone asks me for help, I just say yes.

    I don’t think about my being sick most days and how it would affect my life. I don’t like to let people down and was taught from an early age to be responsible and help others.

    Funny thing is that after I do it I feel better knowing that I help a friend out. Maybe that is why I do it!

    1. Thanks Maria. I know you’re not alone, I also used to over-think things when I was little.

      We’re taught by our parents to help others from a very early age, but I’m not sure how much of our own thoughts come into the equation when it comes to helping someone, we just do it, but I do believe that confidence plays a big part in how hesitant we are on those decisions to the point of self-questioning and over-thinking those decisions through.

      You’re right, it’s hard not to feel bad when we let people down, but others must understand why. We cannot always say yes just because we’ll feel bad.

      Without confidence we will always live with doubt and fear on any decisions or commitments we have to make. At the end of the day it’s confidence that takes away the fear and self-doubt; all the things we run away from.

  3. Good day Ilana, hope you’ve been well. This post hit home because I have fear of commitment issues.

    No matter how hard I’ve tried since my early teenage years, my relationships with woman have turned out to be less than stellar. For one reason or another they always go sour. Right now I am taking a break from trying to find a mate.

    Hopefully though I will not be a bachelor for the rest of my life. Learning how to commit to me is a day to day battle which has not yet been won. – Joe –

    1. Thanks Joe. I’m sure you’re not alone. Any form of commitment can be difficult.

      Commitment comes in all shapes and sizes and isn’t easy. Committing to any one or anything can be difficult when we’ve either not been encouraged; depending on what we deal with; or because parents have never encouraged us to be independent so that can make decisions or commitments.

      Any big decisions I have to make which take me out of my comfort zone that I have never experienced before I still have difficulty with, so I do know how you feel.

      Having confidence helps of course.

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