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Fear of rejection: this way it isolates us from other people

Fear of rejection: this way it isolates us from other people

November 27, 2021

When we think about that facet of our lives that has to do with personal relationships, it is very easy to imagine it by measuring the number of friends and loved ones each person has.

However, there is something that has as much or more importance than that "count" of the number of usual relationships we have: to what extent is it likely lose contact with those friends, lovers or people we would like to meet ?

The truth is that human beings are predisposed to give more importance to possible losses than to profits; This makes us pay close attention to the signs of possible rejection, either by people with whom we have a close relationship or with someone we would like to know more.

However, there are some people who they are especially sensitive to rejection , and therefore they fear and anticipate it frequently, experiencing important doses of psychological distress. The curious thing about this predisposition is that it increases the possibilities that rejection does occur, due to the mechanisms that we will see next.

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Why is sensitivity to rejection produced?

The idea of the people with the worst social skills It is rejected because of its clumsiness when it comes to communicating and strengthening ties with others. It is only partially true. It is true that not having a good toolbox to manage social life makes it easier to end up being more isolated, but this is not inevitable. In fact, many people with difficulties in their relationships are not at all agile when it comes to thinking about social interactions, but quite the opposite: they become obsessed with it due to fear of rejection.

People who are rejecting they remain in an almost constant state of alert , thinking all the time to like the other person and analyzing the behavior of others in search of signs of boredom, mockery or anger.

How have they reached that point? Many times it is not due to poor social skills, but rather the cause is a series of bad experiences in the past. For example, a very tough love break or a childhood marked by bullying or other forms of abuse are capable of taking us to a state of social hypervigilance.

So, the fear of rejection is a fruit of very worrying expectations about what others demand to establish a relationship with them, and this may be produced by past events that escaped self control and the resulting lack of self-esteem.

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Why the fear of being rejected isolates us more

The obsession with the possibility of being rejected makes us conceive of relationships as a machine, and not as a space for interaction between two human beings. The reason is that the pressure not to lose that person is so high that they only concentrate on measuring their movements so as not to "cross an imaginary line" that makes the alarms jump on the other or the other.

On the other hand, people who fear rejection the most are more likely to interpret any ambiguous action as a sign of rejection, which makes them adopt a defensive attitude.

In a research conducted on the subject, a questionnaire measuring this psychological characteristic was passed on to a group of single people and, months later, those who had started a relationship in that period of time were asked to imagine their partner performing a series of strange actions, such as spending less time with them, being distant, etc. The results showed that people who feared rejection more quickly moved to assume that their relationship was in danger , instead of considering other more reasonable hypotheses before.

It has been proven that this pattern of thinking makes people appear more hostile more quickly and without needing too many reasons, and they even become more reluctant to assume their mistakes, something paradoxical if one takes into account the fear one has to the possibility of isolation.

On the other hand, it has also been seen that this fear makes people get into a harmful dynamic in which the first victim is oneself. For example, an investigation showed that men who have been rejected crudely in a social circle are more willing to make sacrifices to be part of that group, confirming that dynamic of submission to the other that such a bad image causes (besides being harmful for whom he suffers in the first person).Men who had been rejected by a woman on a contact website were also more willing to spend more money on an appointment after going through that bad experience.

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Sometimes we forget that the basis of healthy relationships is simplicity and honesty. Assuming the role of victim condemned to rejection only precipitates the appearance of a stigma that leads others to distance themselves.

Pushing People Away, Yet Wanting Closeness | Abandonment & Being Hurt (November 2021).

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