Feeling Unloved: Coping with Abandonment Issues

Coping with Fear of Abandonment and Daddy IssuesOne of the worst feelings that I have ever experienced is that of feeling unloved. It is a feeling that is difficult to describe and even more difficult to vanquish. No matter how much love the unloved may have it doesn’t connect in that moment. In that moment, it is all wallowing, questioning, and sobbing.

As a child I felt unloved because my father abandoned me and my family. He was and still is an inconsistent father. Now, I can cope with the reality of half of my DNA, but there are still moments when I feel like that child. Lonely moments where I feel disregarded and in dire need of reassurance, particularly from my romantic partner.

This is expected. When the first man you ever loved leaves you the love of the ones who follow will always be questioned. And soon the pattern continues and one becomes an abandoholic – a person who is attracted to unavailable partners. I was attracted to men who reminded me of my father. Now, I am an abandoholic who is trying to break the cycle with my new partner.

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Still, I slip up. I feel unloved and the following feelings consume my heart and soul:

  • Isolation
  • Devastation when a relationship ends, no matter how deep or how long the relationship
  • Feelings of desertion if people don’t meet expectations
  • Immense disappointment
  • Fear he will leave when things aren’t perfect
  • Fear of rejection
  • Insecurity and self-doubt
  • A strong desire to abandon him/her to protect myself
  • Feeling unworthy, not important, and unloved

If you’ve experienced most of these emotions, you fear abandonment. Abandoholics can also fear being entrapped, the other extreme of wanting to be committed in order to feel loved. Those who fear to this extreme will run away from relationships all together, becoming involved with partners who lack understanding and respect. It all comes down to maintaining control and keeping our vulnerabilities intact.

Eventually, the flood gates open.  Fear builds when it is not confronted. Instead of feeling carefree when an already doomed relationship fails, the abandoholic feels rejected. The rejection seeps into our core as the pattern continues. Insecurity festers, waiting for the right moment to strike with an impulsive reaction, an emotional outburst, and ultimately, a deep seated feeling of unworthiness.

Today, I felt unloved. At the very moment I tapped away at the keys, I was frightened that my boyfriend didn’t love me.  The harder I pounded on the keys the harder my heart pumped. I could not escape the feeling and so I decided to write.

It is a shame that after 22 years I am still coping with abandonment. It is a shame that I feel unloved as I have so much abundance and love in my life. But when one suffers from abandonment issues it is easy to revert to an insecure girl/boy who hid herself/himself from the world. It is easy to see an unreturned call as a disappearing act. What is not easy is waiting for this feeling to pass. It is so hard to ignore; so difficult to turn off.  So I sat there. I sat there and bled onto the page, knowing I will return to center just as I know the fear will return.

It always has.

  • Sarabear

    Thank you so much for sharing these thoughts! I operate pretty much the same way. My dad wasn’t around at all when I was younger, he and my mom split up and he never was there for me, so I never knee him. I had a step dad who was loving, but also let me down in ways. My mom was so awesome I never realized anything was missing, until navigating romantic relationships now as an adult. I’m 32 and am so sensitive to any fear of abandonment by men and I hate it! Logically, I go into relationships in a good place, but at the first sense of any rejection or abandonment, I am like devastated at the core. I respond emotionally and don’t know how to logically move past this. Ugh. Any practical suggestions that help you in the moment?? All goodness to you in your journey as well!

  • Butch

    I was abused in every way possible from age 2 until adulthood. I had older sisters that one sexually abused me, while the other repeatedly attempted to kill me with the largest butcher knife from the kitchen. My eldest brother took it upon himself to punch me in the side of my face, knocking me out, when I refused to apologize to a girl in my school class who had accused me of something I did not do! I was 7 years old, he was 27, when he hit me so hard, I saw stars, and then everything went black! My parents tried to give me away to another brother – who only wanted to use me as a “slave” on his farm, when I was 13. Another brother delighted in telling me how stupid I was, calling me things such as “idiot” “pig” , and everything else designed to make me feel like shit!

    I was never, ever, told, or shown, any family love! I never saw any love displayed in our family! I found
    I could function only by staying incredibly busy all the time. Now that I am old, all the old terrible memories have come flooding back. Am afraid they will cause me to take my life to avoid the horrible pain. I need some kind of help to show me how to deal with all this I repressed while living my life.

    In my lifelong study and investigation about my situation, I did find several discouraging pieces of information: 1. If children do not receive love and attention by age 3, then a “window” closes, and the life lessons and abilities to be learned, are forever denied to that unfortunate child. 2. A childhood of abuse leads to the brains re-wiring important connections, so the child is then really odd, or an outsider, etc. Therefore all the crap sent the child’s way for being different, is now caused by the child, and then the adult, actually being different!

    I have endured a lifetime of this stuff. IS THERE ANY POSSIBLE WAY TO CHANGE AFTER ALL THIS TIME?

    Thanks

  • Laura

    Can you recommend a book to help get through these feelings? The above replies sound like me.

  • http://lovesujeiry.com Sujeiry Gonzalez

    Hello Jules! Thanks for the comment.

    Yes, being self-aware is key. Without awareness we don’t know the root of our insecurities and emotions. Best tactic to help us open up is to ask WHY. It is a powerful question. So, when you feel negative feelings, ask why? Keep digging. That will help you tap into your instincts and in turn your awareness.

  • Jules

    I know that feeling all too well. You seem to have a good awareness of the complications the fear of abandonment has been causing… I need to become more self-aware. Thanks for bringing light some of the things that I’d been struggling to put into words… Much love.

  • stillbroken

    At 55 I can tell you it still affects me…after years of therapy and loads of success. A child’s sense of self is not fully developed and the damage to a strong, loving sense of self goes very deep.

  • wandrlust7

    Thanks for sharing…i feel exactly the same way

  • Shea728

    Omg…Im 29 & I felt like you were writing about me.
    I couldnt have said it any better myself.
    Good.job

  • http://twitter.com/LaliQuin AutismWonderland

    This was absolutely beautiful. Raw and poignant. And I understand. I’ve been there. It is a cycle. That’s the thing men don’t get when they leave. They don’t understand the damage they create. And it takes so much to move on. You are on my way my friend.

  • Sujeiry Gonzalez

    It really is difficult to deal with. Even when I feel confident and sure of myself, I panic without male reassurance. Just one misstep from my man and I go into a tailspin. What we have to remember is that the feelings of abandonment will always be there. At times dormant but still present. All we can do is change the way we react to these feelings.

    Hope it all works out for you!

  • Jacqueline

    At 26 I’m now realizing my abandonment issues. It’s hard to cope with this disorder and realizing I have this immense fear of my new bf leaving me.

  • Sujeiry Gonzalez

    Does that mean you no like me funny hahaha?! You know you do, Booboo!

    But yes, sometimes even I have to get deep. I have feelings too! Glad you liked it and I will definitely share more of my vulnerabilities on the site from now on :)

  • Jenny

    ah! sujeiry, so raw and so uncut! this is the best way to do it!