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Quick Review: Attached: The New Science of Adult Attachment and How It Can Help You Find and Keep Love

This book quickly won me over by slamming just that typical approach that generates my highly negative attitude towards anything coming from mental health professionals, therapists or counselors in related fields, relationships obviously being one. The entire “Dependency Is Not a Bad Word” section struck me as excellent, explaining the “dependency paradox” and flatly stating that dependency on your partner is a fact and this push towards independence, telling people that they’re responsible for their own happiness and seeing codependence so negatively, is wrong and harmful. In addition, while somewhat less directly, seeking passion and “highs” in relationships is also argued against, as are various other detrimental relationship or dating strategies that are so often recommended, these being replaced with mostly great advice and strategies for steady, secure relationships where each takes responsibility for the other. And, crucially, it’s also stated that fundamental personality traits simply are and in most cases can’t be changed.
Still, while far more restrained and justified than what usually happens, the various arguments and methods for people to change certain behaviors that are presented did seem to somewhat contradict that stance and occasionally bothered me. But I disliked the “abundance philosophy” even more, the mostly great advice for maintaining and even fixing relationships seeming diminished by the focus on dating, searching for a suitable partner by trying many, being willing to give up on relationships and move on. Also, if attachment styles would be such a determining factor of relationship success and the majority would truly be secure, far more people would quite easily have long, steady, fulfilling relationships. In fact, while they do work for most, three categories are too few to fit everyone, and only allowing for one combination doesn’t help much. That combination may be the one that this highly damaging typical approach that is, refreshingly, so firmly rejected in this book is likely to generate, but the other two strike me as far more likely, many people being partially secure. And I’d be one, as even according to the tests in the book I’m an almost even secure-anxious mix.

Rating: 4/5

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