Tools for Those with a Disorganised Attachment Style

This attachment style is a combination of the previous two (avoidant and ambivalent/anxious).

Disorganised children give inconsistent responses in the presence of their primary caregiver (often the mother). This is the result of inconsistent behaviour from the parent, sometimes the parent is a safe and supportive person and sometimes dangerous. There has often been abuse from the parent.

As adults, these people desire intimacy but feel frightened when things become too intense. Their memories of this closeness and dependence may be terrifying, making them dissociate and back off. Becoming close to anyone can cause intense feelings to emerge of self-hate, confusion and anxiety.

If you feel this is you, know that there is some deep healing work to do. It is NORMAL for you to want to be close to people, and also to be terrified when this starts to happen. Be gentle with yourself. A wonderful way to work through this kind of history and attachment style is with a trained professional who can help guide you to re-wire the patterning and widen your window of tolerance relationally.

As you embark on your healing journey part of it will involve re-integrating frozen parts of yourself, working with anger and grief from your childhood and gently re-connecting with your body in a new way.

Having compassion for your history and yourself is part of the process. Feel free to use the free meditation download called “Compassionate Observer” (link in bio) to start this process.


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*Attachment theory by John Bowlby, Mary Ainsworth & Main & Solomon

*Paetzold, Ramona & Rholes, William & Kohn, Jamie. (2015). Disorganized Attachment in Adulthood: Theory, Measurement, and Implications for Romantic Relationships. Review of General Psychology. 19. 10.1037/gpr0000042.