… from an attachment theory perspective
As I dive deeper and deeper into the world of attachment theory, there's one piece that has been especially intriguing to me.
Excitement and Boredom in relationships. What drives excitement in insecure connection? And why does security appear "boring" to those working with insecure wounds?
Here's some of what I've discovered.
There is a need for variety and excitement in relationships and life to keep things feeling "alive". We need some level of mystery in our world to drive our brave efforts towards discovery and illumination.
This mystery and uncertainty is a hallmark of insecure attachment.
This excitement for the anxious attacher is fueled by the mystery(paired with conscious/sub-conscious/unconscious expectation) about when the one they've attached to will abandon them. This leaves them in a near constant state of anxiety, with varying levels of intensity. Their nervous system running on overdrive, and only relieved when they recieve reassurance. How exciting!
For the avoidant attacher this excitement is fueled by the mystery of emotional depth available in their partner. The opportunity to reconnect with their own needs and feelings through their partners emotional attunement, as well as the mystery(paired with conscious/sub-conscious/unconscious expectation) of when their partner will demand too much of them, and engulf them. This leaves them in a near constant state of alertness to the needs and feelings of others and ready to deactivate at the slightest sign of "neediness". Which is relieved when they can take space, which can often help them reconnect to the deeper desire to actually learn and understand their own feelings and needs. How exciting!
This kind of insecure excitement, while very stimulating and thrilling, usually leads to anguish for everyone involved. It is more closely related to the highs and lows of drug use, than it is to the fulfillment available in a solid, secure connection.
And because of this, secure individuals and connection often seem "boring" or even invisible to those working with insecurity.
For the anxious attacher, a secure partner can hear and feel their needs and feelings, and shows up in a consistent and dependable way, thus neutralizing the mystery of their availability. They make their feelings and needs clear and known, and dont leave much room for uncertainty. There's no(less) question of abandonment because this person consistently shows up with love and care, even if they are needing space.
For the avoidant attacher, a secure partner is plenty self reliant, and has many other resources to depend on, which gives them the ability to be understanding and offer the space the avoidant attacher needs. The sense of pressure is gone(lessened) and it's clear the secure partner can self soothe and self regulate when it's really necessary. It's clear this person will be fine when the avoidant needs space, and will still be their when they return for reconnection. Thus the fear of enmeshment is (mostly) nullified, and there is plenty leeway for them to face their fear of intimacy, and realize they can be close with another without losing themself.
With these deep seeded fears essentially neutralized, there is nothing(less) for the nervous system to be triggered by, and thus the connection seems "boring"
There is a great gift awaiting, if the insecure attacher can be patient with this sensation of boredom.
Because this sensation is not synonymous with a lack of excitement. It is simply the absence of high level triggers.
When a system is running smoothly, we dont notice it, unless we make a deliberate choice to give it our attention. It's usually the movement we notice, from functional to less functional, or less functional back up to functional.
And in the absence of these high level triggers we have a system running smoothly. Connection that is fulfilling and harmonious. A stable foundation to build upon.
This is where true excitement can emerge.
From this place of stability. From this place of security.
From here we can truly dream. We can truly imagine. We can truly create.
Not just the dreams of finally creating harmony, as is common when insecurity is running rampant. But we can truly dream of what's possible, when two(or more) souls have a foundation to build upon.
How much magik can you create together? How much variety can you create with intention? How many ways can you imagine to bring spice and flavor and wonder into the world?
The mystery that remains is just how fucking amazing can life be, when you have a safe and stable place to land, when the fireworks you create are done?
From here you have choice. Excitement is a roller coaster you DECIDE to step into, rather than one you find yourself thrown into.
You can choose to create excitement. And you have a place to rest and relax.
Knowing you can choose fireworks again. whenever you want.