How We Love

Sam and I are reading a new book titled How We Love with a few other married couples at our church. We’ll be meeting up with them about once a month to engage about life and marriage.  This book delves deeply into what the authors call “attachment theory”.  The authors have identified five different attachment styles, each stemming from one’s childhood.  The way we were shown (or not shown) love have a direct impact on how we relate to our spouses and others.  Not exactly a new theory, but the book presents some interesting thoughts.

Sam and I have very different attachment styles, and there’s even a whole chapter on us called “The Avoider Marries the Pleaser”.

I have strong Avoider tendencies, but The Pleaser fits Sam like a glove!  Do any of those two sound like you?  If not, perhaps these other 3 will strike a chord – The Vacillator, The Controller, or The Victim.

People can also be one style with friends and a different one with their spouse.

In the chapter written for us (not really, haha) – “The Avoider Marries the Pleaser” – it explains why we were drawn to each other in the first place.

Initially, avoiders see pleasers as sweet, caring, and attentive.  The pleasers’ considerate, thoughtful acts make avoiders feel noticed and special.  This feels great because they didn’t get a lot of personal attention growing up.  Also, since avoiders are used to taking care of themselves, the pleasers’ acts of kindness are pleasant and enjoyable.

Pleasers like the consistency, strength, confidence, and even temperament of avoiders.  Furthermore, avoiders are easy to please because they don’t expect much out of a relationship.  So pleasers feel successful…

Already pretty interesting!  I’m looking forward to digging deeper into this book with other couples.  It’ll be good for us to see how others fight and how they work through their issues as well as for us to have a place to share too.  It’s even more crucial now that we have a baby on the way.

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One thought on “How We Love

  1. Oh yeah, this is one other huge thing we have in common! My husband and I are reading this book too, going through it with a group of 4 couples from our church! We’ve only read up to Chapter 2 so far, we’re trying to meet once a month but that’s not always easy when coordinating 8 people’s schedules. But very cool. 🙂 I like it so far but am still learning about attachment theory. My mom’s a therapist (MFT) and I do know that your upbringing affects you. I guess what I’m figuring out is that with attachment theory, it helps you understand where your patterns come from, but then… its point isn’t to give you an excuse to just stay that way, right? I think/hope we’ll learn more that it encourages you to change your unhealthy patterns by creating a safe and healthy environment in your new family with your spouse. But I certainly understand that knowing where your spouse’s patterns come from helps you be more patient and not take things personally….

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