It may sound like a silly question, but a lot of broken-hearted folks worldwide are now afraid of love. They are too scared to fall in love again for fear of reliving the unbearable pain they went through.
How does one deal with someone who is afraid of love? If you are attracted to such a person, will they return your affection, or are you looking into an unrequited loverelationship?
Courting a person who is afraid of love
If you are the martyr type who is in love with someone like that, don’t fret. It’s not the end of the world. There is still a way to turn things around in your favor. It will just take time, a lot of time.
A person who is afraid of love does not fear love itself but the pain that follows if it fails.
They are no longer willing to leave themselves vulnerable and open their heart and soul to a person and then be cast aside.
In other words, it isn’t love itself that they fear, but failed relationships. So the trick here is not to press the issue and make that person fall in love again without realizing it.
Breaking down walls
People who have “afraid of love” phobia have a defense mechanism that prevents them from being close to anyone. They will push away people who get too close and are guarded against anyone they deem too friendly.
If you want to have a relationship with such a person, you will have to break through their defense. It is not an easy task, and it will test your patience to the limit.
So before you begin and waste your time, decide to either go through with it till the end or quit while you haven’t lost anything yet. If you do end up trying, you will have to give it your all, and it may take years to achieve a breakthrough.
If you are still willing to take on the challenge of courting someone who is afraid of love, here are some tips that would help increase your chances from zero to maybe.
Take it slow
Aggressive, passive-aggressive, or passive methods will not work. If you go to them, they will reject you. If you wait for them to come to you, then you will wait forever.
Understand that you only have one weapon, the heart. There is a hole in their heart that needs to be filled. It is human nature.
It is a conscious effort by their brain that will prevent you from getting close to it. So you have to slowly fill that hole with thoughts of you without alerting their brain.
Do not even dare or hint that you want to be in a relationship with them. It is the one and only white lie you are allowed to say. Other than that, you have to be honest.
People who are afraid of love were most likely betrayed by their ex. One of the ways that betrayal manifested is through lies. It follows that they will detest lies and liars.
So, be an honest friend.
Do not be too available
Do not take every opportunity that presents itself. It will trigger the defense mechanism if you are always available for them.
Unless they specifically call for you, do not create too many “coincidences” to talk or meet in person, learn about their interests through social media or through their friends.
Do not be a stalker. If they catch you once, it’s over.
Once you find out what they like, match it with things that you like.
For example, if both of you love Korean food, go eat in a Korean restaurant with your other friends, wait for them to react to it before you suggest (don’t invite) to come together with your other friends if they are interested. The more people present, the less guarded they will be.
Do not force yourself to like things to get their attention. It will also raise alarms if you are “too perfect.”
Limit your time alone together
At least at the start, if you can go out with your friends that will be better. The more people present, the less likely their brain will process it as a legitimate date.
Do not focus solely on them and enjoy the company of others.
The more they see you are comfortable with “their crowd,” the more their defenses will consider you as a “safe” person.
Do not talk about their past or future
Reminding that person of the reasons why they are afraid of love in the first place is taboo. The last thing you want to do is to ruin all your efforts by reminding them why they do not want to be in a relationship with you (or anyone else).
Talking about the future will have the same effect. It will remind them how they once had a future with their ex and how everything broke apart like a house of cards.
Stick to the present and have fun. If they enjoy your company, they will turn around and miss you for it.
Everything will take time. The moment they are in love with you, they will deny it. They will do all they can to remove you from their lives.
If you notice that they are pushing you away, then stay away. Do not be angry or even ask the reason why. It is a good sign that they realized their defenses are broken, and they are trying to rebuild them.
Give it a couple of weeks before you create a fated encounter. From there, good luck.
If you feel disconnected or frustrated about the state of your marriage but want to avoid separation and/or divorce, the marriage.com course meant for married couples is an excellent resource to help you overcome the most challenging aspects of being married.
Rachael Pace is a noted relationship writer associated with Marriage.com. She provides inspiration, support, and empowerment in the form of motivational articles and essays. Rachael enjoys studying the evolution of loving partnerships and is passionate about writing on them. She believes that everyone should make room for love in their lives and encourages couples to work on overcoming their challenges together.